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# Medical Card: Examples of capital assessment

### Aged over 70

Example 1
Dermot is 72. He has a social welfare pension and a small private pension, total €400 a week. He also has €70,000 in savings, and gets €3,500 a year income from the interest.

The HSE will calculate his income from this, either by taking the actual interest earned or using their notional rate, for example, 3%.

In Dermot's case, he is earning 5% actual interest, so he can opt for the notional rate of 3% instead.

The first €36,000 of capital is ignored, so €34,000 (€70,000-36,000) is actually taken into account.

€34,000 at 3% is €1,020 per annum, or €19.62 a week, when you divide the yearly amount by 52.

Therefore his weekly income assessable for the medical card is €400 from his pensions, plus €19.62 from his savings, totalling €419.62. He continues to qualify for the over 70’s medical card.

Example 2
Michael will be 70 in March 2014. He has pension income of €700 a week. His wife Helen is aged 63, and is still employed at a gross wage of €400 a week. They also have savings and investments of €150,000 which give an annual income of €6,750.

In Michael and Helen's case, they are earning 4.5% actual interest, so he can opt for the notional rate of 3% instead.

The first €72,000 of capital is ignored, so €78,000 (€150,000-72,000) is actually taken into account.

€78,000 at 3% is €2,340 per annum, or €45 a week, when you divide the yearly amount by 52.

Therefore their weekly income assessable for the medical card is €700 from Michael’s pensions, plus €400 from Helen’s job, plus €45 from their savings, totalling €1,145. Michael will qualify for the over 70’s medical card, which will include Helen.

Example 3

Pauline has a net weekly income of €800, so she does not qualify for the over 70s medical card. However, she is resident in a nursing home, and pays €600 a week. She can apply for a general medical card, as she is below the income limit for a person aged 66-69 when her medical expenses are taken into account.

Page updated: 10 April 2013

### Related Documents

• Medical cards
The medical card scheme entitles certain people to free public health services. This document explains the medical card and how to apply for it.
• Universal Social Charge (USC)
The Universal Social Charge is a tax payable on gross income that came into effect on 1 January 2011.
• Capital and social welfare payments
Capital for Irish social welfare purposes includes property, savings and investments. Find out how to assess income from capital for social welfare payments.