Social welfare payments and COVID-19

COVID-19 Pandemic Unemployment Payment

The COVID-19 Pandemic Unemployment Payment (PUP) was a social welfare payment for employees and self-employed people who lost all their employment due to the COVID-19 public health emergency.

The Scheme is closed.

COVID-19 enhanced Illness Benefit

If you are ill with COVID-19, you can get a special form of enhanced Illness Benefit for COVID-19 absences. You may also get it if you are told by a doctor or the HSE to self-isolate or to restrict your movements due to being a probable source of infection.

You must be in employment or self-employment to qualify.

If you do not qualify for Illness Benefit for COVID-19 absences, you may be able to receive Supplementary Welfare Allowance instead.

Enhanced Illness Benefit for COVID-19 absences is paid from the first day of sickness. If you cannot attend work due to illness that is not COVID-19, you can apply for standard Illness Benefit.

If your income is a mix of social welfare and pay from employment, you can continue to get your usual social welfare payment if you become sick or have to self-isolate. If your income is less than the rate of enhanced Illness Benefit you would get, you can apply to have your income topped up to this rate. This top up will not affect the other payments.

If you work in the civil and public sector, you do not need to apply for Illness Benefit for COVID-19 absences as separate leave arrangements are in place.

Page edited: 25 May 2022