Make Work Pay
If you are getting a disability payment, you may find that work pays better than Disability Allowance or Blind Pension payments. Changes introduced in 2017 under the ‘Make Work Pay’ initiative mean you can explore work options and keep key benefits if you take up a job.
You can keep your free travel pass for as long as you qualify for Disability Allowance or Blind Pension, and for up to five years after you take up work.
You can also earn up to a certain amount each week from a job and keep your full Disability Allowance or Blind Person’s Pension. If you earn more than this amount, Intreo will take it into account when assessing your payment.
If exploring your work options sounds like something that might interest you, please contact your local Intreo Centre to set up an appointment with a case officer.
The choice about working and training is up to you. Case officers are there to help you explore all the available options.
Seeing a case officer won’t change the amount of your current social welfare payment or lead to a review of your payment.
Partial Capacity Benefit
The Partial Capacity Benefit is paid if you cannot work to your full capacity but have received permission from your doctor to return to work.
The rate of payment is based upon a medical assessment of your incapacity to work. You can apply for Partial Capacity Benefit before you start to look for work.
Personal Reader Grant
If you are blind or visually impaired and you need help with job-related reading, you may be entitled to a grant so that you can hire a personal reader. This grant is only paid if you work in the private sector.
The government will pay an hourly fee, in line with the current minimum wage. It will be paid for up to 640 hours a year (this is about 18 weeks of full-time work).
The EmployAbility Service can help if you have a disability and want to take up paid employment or you need help to find a job.
The EmployAbility Service provides:
- a professional job matching service to help find the right job for you,
- ongoing support for you and your employer while you are working, and
- information and advice on additional employment supports that may help you.
Wage Subsidy Scheme (WSS)
The Wage Subsidy Scheme gives financial incentives to private sector employers to employ people with a disability. The work offered must be between 21 hours and 39 hours a week. Under this scheme, you will have the same employment conditions as other employees.
Job Interview Interpreter Grant
If you are deaf, hard of hearing or have a speech impairment and you are attending a job interview with a private sector employer, you can get funding to have one of the following attend the interview with you:
- a sign language interpreter,
- a lip speaker, or
- another interpreter.
You can apply for the Job Interview Interpreter Grant for each job interview you attend.
You can also get funding to hire an interpreter to help you when you start work (during your induction) with a private sector employer.
Employee Retention Grant
The Employee Retention Grant Scheme helps private sector employers to keep an employee who acquires an illness, condition or impairment (whether work-related or not) that affects their ability to carry out their job.
This scheme provides funding to:
- identify changes to the workplace, training or both to enable the employee to stay in their current position,
- retrain the employee so they can take up another position within the company.
The aim is to keep the employee, at any level or occupation, within the company.
Work Equipment Adaptation Grant
The Work Equipment Adaptation Grant provides funding towards the cost of workplace equipment for an employee with a disability or who develops a disability.
If you need a more accessible or adapted workplace to do your job, your employer may get a grant towards the costs.
The grant is available if you:
- have been offered a job,
- are promoted,
- are redeployed (moved to a new area of work), or
- become self-employed.
Examples of adaptations that qualify for the grant include:
- ramps or toilets,
- alarm systems with flashing lights, and
- voice synthesizers for computers or amplifiers for telephones.