Wage Subsidy Scheme

The Wage Subsidy Scheme 

This  scheme (WSS) provides financial incentives to private sector employers to employ people with a disability who work 21 hours per week or more, up to a maximum of 39 hours per week.

The financial supports for employers available through this scheme are structured under three separate strands and employers could benefit under one strand or under two or three strands simultaneously, as the case may be.


Strand I 

This subsidy is a general subsidy for any perceived productivity shortfall in excess of 20% for a person with a disability, in comparison to a colleague without a disability.  

  • An employee must work for a minimum of 21 hours per week up to a maximum of 39 hours per week.  
  • The rate of subsidy is €5.30 per hour and the amount of the subsidy is based on the number of hours worked.
  • The maximum annual subsidy payable is €10,748 per year based on a 39 hour week.  

 
Strand II 

This subsidy is payable when an employer employs three or more people with a disability who are supported by a WSS Strand I payment.  Strand II is intended to cover the additional supervisory, management and other work based costs relating to these employees.  

  • This top-up payment is a percentage of the Strand I subsidy and is based on the overall number of employees with a disability employed under Strand I.  
  • It ranges from an additional 10% of wage subsidy for 3 to 6 employees with a disability to a maximum of 50% of wage subsidy for 23+ employees with a disability.

 
Strand III 

This subsidy enables employers who employ 30 or more workers with a disability on the Wage Subsidy Scheme to be eligible for a grant of up to €30,000 per year towards the expense of employing an Employment Assistance Officer to support these employees.
 

How do I apply? 

In order to apply for Strand I subsidy, an employer should complete the following forms and forward them, along with all of the supporting documentation, to their local DEASP Intreo Centre or to a DEASP Case Officer, for consideration:

The supporting documents include: 

  • Company's Tax Clearance Certificate,
  • Employee’s contract of employment,
  • Job description and person specification (if available).


If it is approved, you will receive a letter from your DEASP Case Officer. If not, they will request a visit with you and your employee. Making contact with the relevant office in advance should facilitate the smooth running of this process. 

Contact details for the Wage Subsidy Scheme can be accessed here.