What is the Working Family Payment?
Getting to grips with this support for families on low incomes
Written by spunout
Fact checked by experts and reviewed by young people.
Working Family Payment (WFP), previously known as the Family Income Supplement (FIS), is a weekly social welfare payment for parents who have jobs but don’t earn a lot of money.
Read more about social welfare supports for parents.
What is the Working Family Payment?
Working Family Payment is a weekly tax-free social welfare payment that is available to employees with children. It offers extra financial support to people on low pay. WFP is for employees only. You cannot qualify if you are self-employed.
Am I eligible for Working Family Payment?
There are a few conditions you have to meet in order to be eligible:
- You need to have at least one child under 18 who lives with you or is financially supported by you
- The average amount of money your household makes every week must fall below a certain amount, with the amount depending on how many children you have
- You must be working at least 19 hours every week and if you are married, in a civil partnership, or living with a partner, their working hours can count towards this too
- Your job needs to be likely to last at least three more months
What are the income limits for Working Family Payment?
To qualify for WFP, your average weekly family income must be below a certain amount for your family size. How this amount is determined depends on the number of children you have.
- If you have one child, you need to earn less than €541 every week
- If you have two children, you need to earn less than €642 every week
- If you have three children, you need to earn less than €743 every week
- If you have four children, you need to earn less than €834 every week
- If you have five children, you need to earn less than €960 every week
- If you have six children, you need to earn less than €1,076 every week
- If you have seven children, you need to earn less than €1,212 every week
- If you have eight children, you need to earn less than €1,308 every week
Remember, if you are married, in a civil partnership, or living with your partner, their income will be counted too.
Can I receive WFP if I am already getting another social welfare payment?
It depends on what other supports you are receiving. You may still be entitled to this payment if you are also claiming:
However, you cannot claim if you are:
- Claiming Jobseeker’s Allowance or Jobseeker’s Benefit, as you must already have a job to claim Working Family Payment.
- Participating in a Community Employment Scheme, Gateway, Rural Social Scheme, the Tús scheme or JobBridge.
How long can I receive Working Family Payment for?
WFP is generally paid for 52 weeks (one year). If your pay or hours at work are reduced during this time, your payment will stay the same. However, at the end of the 52 weeks, you will have the chance to re-apply for WFP, and your new circumstances will be taken into account then.
How much money will I receive?
The amount of WFP you can get is 60% of the difference between the income limit for a family of your size and your actual income.
Example – A family with one child
- The income limit for a family with one child is €531
- If you have one child and make €300 every week, you would calculate your WFP by taking €300 away from €531, and calculating 60% of this
- This would be 60% of €231, which is €138.60. This means if you earned €300 every week, and had one child, you would get €138.60 every week
Example – A family with two children
- Ciara has two kids. She works part-time and earns on average €150 a week. She lives with her boyfriend and he earns €100 every week. That means all together, her household earns €250 every week
- The income limit for a family with two children is €632, so she will be able to qualify for WFP
- To find out how much she will be entitled to, Ciara needs to take away €250 (her household’s actual income) from €632 (the income limit for a family of her size), and calculate 60% of this
- €250 from €632 is €382, and 60% of this is €229.20
- This means she will get €229.20 every week
How do I apply for Working Family Payment?
Applications are only accepted by post. To apply for Working Family Payment, you need to fill out this form and send it to the below address:
Working Family Payment (WFP) Section,
Department of Employment Affairs and Social Protection,
Social Welfare Services Office,
If you need assistance with filling out the form, you can contact your local Intreo office.
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.