A Social Assistance may be awarded to a Head of Household who may:

• be incapable of working due to medical reasons; or
• cannot engage in employment due to having care and custody of children, and is legally or de facto separated; or
• be married, in a civil union; cohabiting or caring for the spouse who may be critically ill. In this case the application is subject to approval by a Medical Board, appointed in accordance to the Social Security Act (Cap. 318).

What you'll get

Social Assistance is paid every 4 weeks in advance.

If the Head of Household is living on his own, Social Assistance will be awarded in his own right. However, if the household is formed of other family members, the Head of Household will be awarded Social Assistance which will include entitlement for other eligible family members forming part of that household.

In the case where the Head of Household was in receipt of Unemployment Assistance and is now registering under Part 2 (after being struck off from registering under Part 1 of the Employment Register and has lodged an appeal with National Employment Authority), the spouse may be eligible to receive Social Assistance Board. The award of Social Assistance Board is subject to approval by a Board appointed in accordance to the Social Security Act (Cap. 318).

The Social Assistance rate may increase by the additional applicable rate for an additional household member. On the other hand, if a household member leaves, the rate may be deducted accordingly.

In case of an applicant living in a rented property, €1.16 per week is added to the Social Assistance applicable rate, being Rent Allowance.

Any change in circumstance, such as change of address; additional child; changes in household composition; medical board decision; death; court procedures, is to be reported immediately to the Department of Social Security.

Beneficiaries who are over 23 years of age and who enter University or MCAST will continue to receive the same assistance as long as the stipend and other ancillary benefits received do not exceed the difference between the Social Assistance and the National Minimum Wage. In case it exceeds, only the amount exceeding the National Minimum Wage will be deducted from the Social Assistance.

Please click here for a Schedule of Benefit Rates.


General eligibility criteria:

  • The applicant should be the Head of Household
  • The applicant is not in employment and cannot register for work under Part 1 of the Unemployment Register
  • The applicant must satisfy the Capital Means Test. Capital resources for a couple must not exceed €23,300 and €14,000 for a single person
  • For couples receiving Social Assistance and the spouse is entitled for the Severe Disability Assistance, the Social Assistance will be calculated on the entire family except the person who receives the Severe Disability Assistance. The amount received as Severe Disability Assistance will be ignored for the calculation of the weekly means test
  • Any income deriving from rents; bank interest from capital, stocks and shares; alimony/child maintenance and any other income derived; must not exceed the maximum Social Assistance rate as per household

How to apply

Fill in the online form and submit.