Case Study 2

A married woman living in Lisnaskea who had been working in Ballyconnell, Co. Cavan since March 05 had an accident at work and wanted to know what sickness payments she might be entitled to.

She also wanted to know whether she would be entitled to Income Support or help with her rates whilst off sick.  Her husband was in receipt of long term Incapacity Benefit.  She had instructed a solicitor in relation to a personal injury claim and wanted to know if her sickness benefits would be recoverable from any damages she might receive.

There is no scheme of Statutory Sick Pay in the South but she will be entitled to Injury Benefit from DSFA at weekly rate of €185.80 per week for up to 26 weeks.  If she is still unfit to work after that period she may be entitled to Disability Benefit from DSFA.

She may be entitled to a small amount of Income Support as a couple pending a decision on client’s Injury Benefit claim.  However she would eventually have to repay the Income Support as her Injury Benefit combined with her husband’s Incapacity Benefit would exceed their Income Support applicable amount or level.

Completed Housing Benefit for rates calculation, advised that there will be no entitlement to Housing Benefit when her Injury Benefit and husband’s Incapacity Benefit are in payment.

In relation to her personal injury claim, Injury Benefit is recoverable from Special Damages i.e. from any loss of earnings contained in her damages claim.  When the civil court is assessing damages it must take into account any Injury Benefit and Disablement Benefit (client may qualify for this Social Welfare payment from DSFA as a lump sum) paid.  Other social welfare payments are disregarded.

August 2008