What am I entitled to when I lose my job?

What is the next step?
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Losing a job is a very stressful and upsetting experience. If it’s just happened to you, you may be left wondering what you should do next and where you should go for information. You may have questions and worries about issues such as redundancy pay, your rights, social welfare benefits and job seeking.

Am I entitled to redundancy?

Not all employees are entitled to the statutory redundancy payment, even where a redundancy situation exists. To be eligible for a payment under the Redundancy Acts, the employee must satisfy the following requirements:

  • Be aged over 16 years of age
  • Be in employment that is insurable for all benefits under the social welfare system (PRSI Class “A”)
  • Have worked continuously for the employer for at least 104 weeks
  • Have been in continuous employment for more than two years if a part-time worker
  • The same rules apply to apprentices. Apprentices qualify for redundancy unless they are let go within one month of completing an apprenticeship

To read more on redundancy and how it’s calculated, click here.

Am I entitled to a social welfare payment?

The main social welfare payments for unemployed people are either Jobseeker’s Benefit (JB) or Jobseeker’s Allowance (JA). This section aims to make you familiar with rules you need to know in order to apply for and continue to receive these payments.

How to qualify for Jobseeker’s Allowance or Jobseeker’s Benefit

For all unemployment payments you must be:

  • Unemployed (fully unemployed or unemployed for at least four days out of seven consecutive days)
  • aged between 18 and 66
  • available for full-time work
  • capable of full-time work
  • genuinely seeking employment

For Jobseeker’s Allowance you must also satisfy a means test and satisfy the Habitual Residence Conditions (HRC).


Citizens Information provides further information on employment, social welfare and money and tax. Click here to find out more.

If it’s been a while since you were last a jobseeker, you can check out our advice on finding employment.

Need more information?

We are here to answer your questions and talk through your options. Our online chat service is for 16 to 25 year olds and is available Monday to Friday, 4pm to 8pm. Chat to us now about your situation.

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