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Concern over future payment of Winter Fuel Payment for Irish residents following Brexit – John Brady TD

21 February, 2019 - by John Brady TD

Sinn Féin spokesperson for Employment Affairs & Social Protection John Brady TD has warned that the future payment of the Winter Fuel Payment currently paid to Irish residents who worked in England is not guaranteed post-Brexit.

The Committee on Employment Affairs & Social Protection were today discussing the Convention on social security signed between Ireland and the UK with Minister Doherty.

Teachta Brady said:

“Last year, 31,565 people living in Ireland received the Winter Fuel Payment from England. The number of recipients has been rising annually with just 6,810 people receiving the payment back in 2011.

“It struck me that no-where in the 44 page Social Security Convention mentioned the Winter Fuel Payment however; it did include an article regarding the prevention of overlapping entitlement to benefits.

“Since a 2012 European Court of Justice ruling, those in receipt of the Winter Fuel Payment in Ireland have also been able to avail of the Fuel Allowance payment here.

"However, under the Convention it is stated that 'shall not confer nor maintain the right to two or more benefits of the same type' meaning that a person will not be able to receive both, as they now can.

“This is extremely concerning for the 31,565 people receiving the Winter Fuel Payment especially for those who do not qualify for the Fuel Allowance here and therefore, solely depend on it to assist with their fuel costs.

“I will be following up with Minister Doherty on this issue again once the legislation is published tomorrow.”

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