Jobseeker’s Benefit query – Irish Daily Star – Money Doctor column Thursday 17th August 2023

Q – A friend of mine says that he can get unemployment jobseeker’s benefit even if he is fired from his current job ? Is this true ? Also if you quit your job – not be fired – are you entitled to any unemployment benefits ? Love the column Tom – Galway

A – The answer to both questions Tom could be basically NO for potentially at least 9 weeks. If you are sacked from your employment for misconduct, unless you are contesting that sacking, no benefit may arise for the first 9 weeks. Equally if you leave your job, this is voluntary and therefore no benefit applies either for those first 9 weeks. If you have ‘good cause’ to leave voluntarily, e.g. any changes in working conditions such as a reduction in pay, harassment or abuse from your employer, you may get your payment. The Deciding Officer in your Social Welfare Local Office will decide if you had good cause to leave voluntarily. Only in the case where you are laid off, or your company goes bankrupt are you entitled to immediate unemployment benefit – currently € 220 per week ( once you were earning over € 300 per week ) for Jobseekers’ Benefit while those without the prerequisite PRSI contributions, can avail of Jobseekers’ Allowance  ( where you MUST pass a means test ) You have to be working with your company for at least 2 full years before your employer MUST pay a redundancy payment.

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