When a worker is told to self-isolate by a doctor or has been diagnosed with COVID-19 (coronavirus), they can apply for a COVID-19 Enhanced Illness Benefit payment of €350 per week. Both employees and self-employed people qualify for the COVID-19 enhanced Illness Benefit.
If you are ill for another reason and can’t work, you should apply for normal Illness Benefit.
You can apply for enhanced Illness Benefit, if you are:
- Suspected of having COVID-19 and are told by a doctor or directed by the Health Service Executive (HSE) to self-isolate
- Diagnosed with COVID-19
To qualify for COVID-19 enhanced Illness Benefit, you must:
- Be aged between 18 and 66
- Have medical certification from a doctor or the HSE to support your application
- Be employed or self-employed and have worked in the 4 weeks before the date of your medical certification
- Have a current contract of employment, if you are an employee
You won’t get the payment without medical certification. You must be certified by your own doctor or have a text notification from the HSE telling you that you have been identified as having contact with someone who has COVID-19.
If you are self-isolating for other reasons (for example, because you feel that you are at risk), you do not qualify for the payment.
How long will I get the COVID-19 enhanced Illness Benefit?
Enhanced Illness Benefit can cover a COVID-19 diagnosis (or medically-required self-isolation) up to a certain number of weeks. If you need to self-isolate because you may have COVID-19, it is paid for a maximum of 2 weeks.
If you are diagnosed with COVID-19, it is paid for a maximum of 10 weeks. If your medical certificate is for fewer than 10 weeks, you will be paid for the duration of your medical certificate.
You should continue to talk with your doctor about your diagnosis and the length of time you are medically certified unfit to work because of COVID-19.
Rate of COVID-19 enhanced Illness Benefit
The personal rate of enhanced Illness Benefit is €350 per week.
If you are married, in a civil partnership or cohabiting, you may get an increase in your payment for your spouse or partner. You may also get an increase in your payment for dependent children.