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The COVID-19 Pandemic Unemployment Payment is an emergency payment of €350 per week introduced by the Government for a 12 week period and intended to compensate those workers whose employers cannot retain them on their payroll. The payment will also be made to people who are self-employed but whose trade has temporarily ceased.

You are eligible to apply for the Covid-19 Pandemic Unemployment Payment if:

  • you were in employment or self-employment immediately before Friday 13 March, and
  • you have been temporarily laid-off from work or asked to stay at home from work, and
  • your employer is not in a position to retain you on their payroll, and
  • you are not in receipt of any employment income.

You are not eligible to apply for the Covid-19 Pandemic Unemployment Payment if:

  • you were not in employment immediately before Friday 13 March, or
  • you were not laid-off from work by your employer, or
  • you are continuing to receive income from your employment, or
  • you voluntarily left your employment.

Do not claim the Covid-19 Pandemic Unemployment Payment if your employer has not laid you off or if you were not previously in employment or if you are still in receipt of employment income, or if your employer takes you back onto their payroll.

If you think you inadvertently applied for the Covid-19 Pandemic Unemployment Payment, or if your employer has re-employed you under the new Temporary Wage Subsidy Scheme, you must close your Covid-19 Pandemic Unemployment Payment claim now. Claims can be closed via the Department’s online portal at under the Covid-19 payment section.

The Department of Social Protection will review all claims. It is engaging with Revenue Commissioners to identify those workers not eligible to avail of the Covid-19 Pandemic Unemployment Payment and will take steps to recover any incorrect payment. Any person who knowingly claims the payment in circumstances where they are not entitled to the payment will be prosecuted.

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