Citizen’s Corner – Budget benefits

a person stacking coins on top of a table
Photo by Towfiqu barbhuiya on Unsplash

Budget 2024 included a range of tax cuts and cost-of-living/social protection measures. But how will these measures impact the pocket of the average person? Here are some of the main points you might want to watch our for.

Pensioners will receive a €12 increase in the maximum rate of state pensions from January 2024, as well as €300 cost-of-living lump sum payment in November if they receive the Fuel Allowance. They’ll also get another €200 lump sum payment if they get the Living Alone Increase, along with the ‘Christmas bonus’ in early December and a January cost-of-living bonus.

Families and children will also benefit from a double Child Benefit payment in December, meaning that families will get €280 for each child under 16 and €315 for each child over 16. Furthermore, families who receive the Working Family Payment will get a €400 cost-of-living lump sum this month, while parents who pay their student children’s accommodation in ‘Rent a Room’ or ‘digs’ will be able to claim the Rent Tax Credit. The Qualified Child Increase will also rise to €46 per week for under 12s and €54 per week for over 12s from January.

Those who get the Carer’s Support Grant will receive a special once-off payment of €400 this month, while people with disabilities will get a once-off payment of €400 if they get Disability Allowance, Blind Pension, Invalidity Pension, or Domiciliary Care Allowance.

Jobseekers will see an increase of €12 in the maximum personal weekly rate from January, while this month lone parents will get a €100 cost-of-living lump sum payment for each qualified child.

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Workers will also see some changes in their income tax and USC rates from January. The point at which workers pay the top rate of tax will rise to €42,000, which means that more people will pay less tax on their earnings. The Universal Social Charge will also be cut from 4.5 per cent to 4 per cent for incomes between €21,000 and €70,000.

The national minimum wage will also increase to €12.70p/h, however workers will also face a 0.1 per cent increase in PRSI contribution rates from October next year, reducing their net pay by a small amount.

On the housing front, renters will benefit from an increase in the Rent Tax Credit from €500 a year to €750 a year.

Finally, all domestic electricity customers will receive three electricity credits of €150 for each from this December through to March 2024.

Limerick Citizens Information Centre answer your questions in the Limerick Post. If you have a question relating to social welfare issues, tenant or consumer rights, immigration, money, tax, housing, or employment, email, call 0818 075 780, or drop in to Riverstone House, Henry Street, V93 T28.