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Varadkar says lone parents can earn more under measure that kicks in today

Changes have been made to the One-Parent Family Payment and the Jobseeker’s Transitional Payment.

Leo Varadkar
Leo Varadkar
Image: Niall Carson PA Archive/PA Images

LEO VARADKAR HAS said that, from today, lone parents can earn more while retaining their full One-Parent Family Payment (OPFP) or Jobseeker’s Transitional Payment (JTP).

The income disregards for the OPFP and the JTP have been increased by €20, from €90 to €110 per week. The measure applies to existing and new lone parents.

Speaking today, the Social Protection Minister said: “This measure further builds on the Budget 2016 measure which increased the income disregard of the Jobseeker’s Transitional Payment from €60 a week to €90 a week.

“In doing so it ensures that Jobseeker’s Transitional Payment recipients who are working will gain more income at the end of each week.”

The JTP is available to lone parents whose youngest child is aged between seven and 13 years. These people are exempt from Jobseeker’s Allowance conditions that require them to be available for, and genuinely seeking, full-time work.

Varadkar added: “No lone parent with a child aged under 14 years is required to take up employment in order to receive income support from the Department of Social Protection.

They also have the option of availing of education and moving into employment, including into part-time employment, and continuing to receive a social welfare payment. The weekly income disregard for Jobseeker’s Transitional Payment means test is €110 with effect from today with the balance assessed at 50%.

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The Department of Social Protection said the increase to the OPFP disregard will benefit approximately 12,800 people, while the increase to the JTP disregard will benefit approximately 4,700 people.

Read: FactCheck: Did the last government cut payments to lone parents?

Read: Budget 2017: Here are the main points you need to know

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Órla Ryan

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