SOCIAL WELFARE ACT 2012

JurisdictionIreland
CitationIR No. 43/2012


SOCIAL WELFARE ACT 2012

2012 Number 43

AN ACT TO AMEND AND EXTEND THE SOCIAL WELFARE ACTS AND TO AMEND THE REDUNDANCY PAYMENTS ACT 1967.

[21st December 2012]

BE IT ENACTED BY THE OIREACHTAS AS FOLLOWS:

1 Preliminary and General

PART 1

Preliminary and General

S-1 Short title, construction, collective citation and commencement.

1 Short title, construction, collective citation and commencement.

(1) This Act may be cited as the Social Welfare Act 2012.

(2) The Social Welfare Acts and this Act, other than Part 3 , shall be read together as one.

(3) The Redundancy Payments Acts 1967 to 2011 and Part 3 shall be read together as one and may be cited together as the Redundancy Payments Acts 1967 to 2012.

(4) Sections 13 , 15 , 16 and 17 shall come into operation on such day or days as the Minister for Social Protection may appoint by order or orders either generally or with reference to any particular purpose or provision, and different days may be so appointed for different purposes or different provisions.

S-2 Definitions.

2 Definitions.

2.- In this Act-

"Act of 2006" means the Social Welfare Law Reform and Pensions Act 2006 ;

"Act of 2010" means the Social Welfare Act 2010 ;

"Act of 2011" means the Social Welfare Act 2011 ;

"Act of 2012" means the Social Welfare and Pensions Act 2012 ;

"Principal Act" means the Social Welfare Consolidation Act 2005 .

2 Amendment of Social Welfare Acts

PART 2

Amendment of Social Welfare Acts

S-3 Calculation of yearly average and alternative yearly average for pension purposes.

3 Calculation of yearly average and alternative yearly average for pension purposes.

(1) Section 108(2) of the Principal Act is amended-

(a) in the definition of "yearly average" by substituting"attaining pensionable age and where, in the case of a claim made on or after 13 July 1992, the average so calculated is a fraction of a whole number consisting of one-half or more it shall be rounded up to the nearest whole number and where it is a fraction of less than one-half it shall be rounded down to the nearest whole number;" for "attaining pensionable age;", and

(b) in the definition of "alternative yearly average" by substituting "attaining pensionable age and where, in the case of a claim made on or after 13 July 1992, the average so calculated is a fraction of a whole number consisting of one-half or more it shall be rounded up to the nearest whole number and where it is a fraction of less than one-half it shall be rounded down to the nearest whole number." for "attaining pensionable age.".

(2) Section 114(3) of the Principal Act is amended-

(a) in the definition of "yearly average" by substituting"attaining the age of 65 years and where, in the case of a claim made on or after 13 July 1992, the average so calculated is a fraction of a whole number consisting of one-half or more it shall be rounded up to the nearest whole number and where it is a fraction of less than one-half it shall be rounded down to the nearest whole number;" for "attaining the age of 65 years;", and

(b) in the definition of "alternative yearly average" by substituting "attaining the age of 65 years and where, in the case of a claim made on or after 13 July 1992, the average so calculated is a fraction of a whole number consisting of one-half or more it shall be rounded up to the nearest whole number and where it is a fraction of less than one-half it shall be rounded down to the nearest whole number." for "attaining the age of 65 years.".

(3) Section 123 of the Principal Act is amended in the definition of "yearly average" (amended by section 17 of the Social Welfare and Pensions Act 2010 ) by substituting "section 125(1)(b) and where the average so calculated is a fraction of a whole number consisting of one-half or more it shall be rounded up to the nearest whole number and where it is a fraction of less than one-half it shall be rounded down to the nearest whole number." for "section 125(1)(b).".

(4) Section 134(3) of the Principal Act is amended in the definition of "yearly average" by substituting "section 135(1)(b)(ii) and where the average so calculated is a fraction of a whole number consisting of one-half or more it shall be rounded up to the nearest whole number and where it is a fraction of less than one-half it shall be rounded down to the nearest whole number." for "section 135(1)(b)(ii).".

(5) Section 178A (amended by section 5 of the Act of 2012) of the Principal Act is amended by inserting the following subsection after subsection (3):

"(3A) In this section 'yearly average' means the average per contribution year of contribution weeks in respect of which the husband or claimant has qualifying contributions, voluntary contributions or credited contributions in the appropriate period specified in subsection (2)(b) and where the average so calculated is a fraction of a whole number consisting of one-half or more it shall be rounded up to the nearest whole number and where it is a fraction of less than one-half it shall be rounded down to the nearest whole number.".

S-4 State pension (contributory) - amendments.

4 State pension (contributory) - amendments.

(1) Section 109 (amended by section 4 of the Act of 2006) of the Principal Act is amended-

(a) by substituting the following subsection for subsection (8):

"(8) Subject to subsections (8A) and (9), regulations may provide for entitling to State pension (contributory) a claimant who would be entitled to that pension but for the fact that he or she has a yearly average of less than 48.",

(b) by inserting the following subsection after subsection (8):

"(8A) Where a claimant referred to in subsection (8) has-

(a) attained pensionable age before 1 January 2013, and

(b) a yearly average of less than 20,

he or she is required to have qualifying contributions in respect of not less than 260 contribution weeks since his or her entry into insurance.",

and

(c) by substituting the following subsection for subsection (14):

"(14) Subject to subsection (15), regulations may provide for entitling to State pension (contributory) aperson who would be entitled to that pension but for the fact that the contribution condition in subsection (1)(c) is not satisfied, where that person-

(a) has attained pensionable age before 1 January 2013, and

(b) having earlier ceased to be an employed contributor became, as a consequence and at the time of the coming into operation of section 12 of the Social Welfare Act 1973 , an employed contributor in respect of whom contributions reckonable for the purposes of the contribution conditions for entitlement to State pension (contributory) were payable.".

(2) This section comes into operation on 1 January 2013.

S-5 Respite care grant - amendment.

5 Respite care grant - amendment.

(1) Section 225 (amended by section 9 of the Social Welfare and Pensions Act 2008 ) of the Principal Act is amended in subsection (1) by substituting "€1,375" for "€1,700".

(2) This section comes into operation on 1 June 2013.

S-6 Employment contributions - amendment.

6 Employment contributions - amendment.

(1) Section 13(2) of the Principal Act is amended in paragraph (b) by deleting "in excess of €127".

(2) This section comes into operation on 1 January 2013.

S-7 Schedule 3 - amendment.

7 Schedule 3 - amendment.

(1) Rule 1 of Part 2 of Schedule 3 to the Principal Act is amended by substituting the following paragraph for paragraph (9) (amended by section 10 of the Act of 2011):

"(9) in the case of-

(a) a fisherman, the gross income derived from any form of self-employment, or

(b) a farmer entitled to or in receipt of farm assist, the gross yearly income which the farmer or his or her spouse, civil partner or cohabitant may reasonably be expected to receive from farming or any other form of self-employment,

less any expenses necessarily incurred in carrying on any form of self-employment;".

(2) This section comes into operation on 3 April 2013.

S-8 Child benefit - amendments.

8 Child benefit - amendments.

(1) Section 221 of the Principal Act is amended by substituting the following subsection for subsection (1) (amended by section 8 of the Act of 2011):

"(1) Subject to this Act, a qualified person shall be paid a monthly benefit-

(a) of the amount set out in column (2) of Part 4 of Schedule 4 for a qualified child referred to in column (1) of that Part of that Schedule opposite that amount for any entitlement to child benefit that occurs during the period beginning on 1 January 2013 and expiring on 31 December 2013, and

(b) of €130 for each qualified child in respect of any entitlement to child benefit that occurs on or after1 January 2014.".

(2) Schedule 4 to the Principal Act is amended by substituting the following Part for Part 4 (amended by section 8 of the Act of 2011):

"PART 4

AMOUNTS OF CHILD BENEFIT DURING THEPERIOD BEGINNING ON 1 JANUARY 2013AND EXPIRING ON 31 DECEMBER 2013

Qualified child in respect of whom child benefit is payable

Monthly rate of child benefit payable per qualified child during the period beginning on 1 January 2013 and expiring on 31 December 2013

1. Each of the first 3 qualified children

2. Each qualified child in excess of 3 qualified children

130.00

140.00".

(3) This section comes into operation on 1 January 2013.

S-9 State pension (transition) - amendments.

9 State pension (transition) - amendments.

(1) Section 115 of the Principal Act is amended-

(a) by substituting the following subsection for subsection (6) (amended by section 4 of the Act of 2006):

"(6) Regulations under subsection (5) shall provide that State pension (transition) payable by virtue of those regulations shall, subject to subsection (6A), be payable at a rate less than that specified in Schedule 2, and the rate specified by the regulations may vary by reference to the yearly average so calculated, but any increase of that pension payable under section 117(2) shall be the same as if the claimant had a yearly average of not less than 48.",

and

(b) by inserting the following subsection after...

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