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One-Parent Family Payment in Ireland

One-Parent Family Payment (OPFP) is a payment for men and women who are bringing up a child without the support of a partner.

To qualify for a One-Parent Family Payment you must:

  • Be the parent, step-parent, adoptive parent or legal guardian of a qualified child.
  • Be the main carer of at least one qualified child and that child must live with you. One-Parent Family Payment is not payable if the parents have joint equal custody of a child or children.
  • Have earnings of €425 or less per week
  • Satisfy a means test
  • Be habitually resident
  • Not be living with a spouse, civil partner or cohabiting
  • Have at least one relevant child below the relevant age limit. From 2 July 2015 the age limit is 7 years of age.

Please visit for a full list of rules and regulations

Cross border issues

Live South Work North

Q) A person resident in Ireland plans to take up part time work in Northern Ireland. Can they continue to claim One-Parent Family payment from the Department of Social Protection?

A) Yes, however, it is a little bit complicated:

  1. Before accepting the job in Northern Ireland, the person should contact their Social Welfare Officer to explain the situation and confirm their situation
  2. Then the person takes the job, they apply for UK Tax Credits due to low income  and also apply for UK Child Benefit
  3. When the UK Tax Credits are awarded the person should contact their Social Welfare Office.  The amount of OPFP to be paid, will usually be the difference between the UK Tax Credits and the rate of OPFP.   Please note that it can take many months before the Tax Credits award is confirmed, be sure to ask your Social Welfare Officer about other possible payments while waiting on this information to be returned from England.
  4. Once the amount of OPFP is confirmed, it is referred to as a Supplement and is paid quarterly (every three months)

Live North Work South

Usually it is necessary to be Habitually Resident in the South, however, there are exceptions for cross border workers:

Q) Can a person resident in the North but working in the South claim One-Parent Family payment from the Department of Social Protection?

A) Yes – please see explanation from the Department of Social Protection below:

See also:

Page last checked: March 2016

This webpage is for general information purposes only and while we endeavour to keep it up-to-date, errors may occur.  It is very important that you check with the relevant body to ensure the information is current and is applicable to your situation: – North /  South

If you would like to suggest amendments or highlight new information that could be useful to others please don’t hesitate to get in touch.