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The Employment Wage Subsidy Scheme (EWSS) will replace the Temporary Wage Subsidy Scheme (TWSS) from 1st September 2020.

The EWSS provides a flat-rate subsidy to qualifying employers based on the numbers of paid and eligible employees on the employer’s payroll. To qualify for the scheme, an employer must be able to demonstrate that:

  • their business will experience a 30% reduction in turnover or orders between 1 July and 31 December 2020


  • this disruption is caused by Covid-19.

The reduction in turnover or orders is relative to:

  • the same period in 2019 where the business was in existence prior to July 1st 2019
  • The date of commencement to 31 December 2019
  • Where a business commenced after 1 November 2019, the projected turnover or orders.

Additionally, the employer must have a tax clearance certificate to be eligible to join the EWSS and remain tax clear to continue receiving the EWSS benefits. This means employers must be compliant with all obligations under tax legislation in relation to the filing of returns and payment of taxes.

However, where an employer is availing of debt warehousing and/or agrees a phased payment for outstanding debt that does not qualify for warehousing, that employer will be regarded as being compliant and will therefore qualify for a tax clearance certificate.

The scheme will be administered by Revenue on a ‘self-assessment’ basis and employers are required to undertake a review on the last day of every month to ensure they continue to meet the above eligibility criteria. Employers who, following a monthly review, find they no longer qualify should deregister for EWSS with immediate effect i.e. from the first of the following month.

A 0.5% rate of employers PRSI will apply for employments that are eligible for the subsidy.

The level of subsidy the employer will receive per paid employee is as follows:

Employee Gross Weekly Wages Subsidy Payable
Less than €151.50 Nil
From €151.50 to €201.99 €151.50
From 203 to €1,462 €203
More than €1,462 Nil

Employers will be required to deduct and remit income tax, USC and employee PRSI on all payments made under the EWSS.

Claiming EWSS for new hires and seasonal workers

Eligible employers may backdate a claim to 1 July 2020 for EWSS payments in respect of new hires and seasonal workers, subject to limited exceptions. Payments in respect of July and August are expected to be made by Revenue in mid-September, with payments for subsequent periods being made monthly in arrears thereafter.

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