What is Injury Benefit?
Injury Benefit is one of the benefits you can get under the Occupational Injuries Benefit Scheme. It is a weekly payment. You can get it if you are unfit for work due to:
- An accident at work
- An accident while travelling directly to or from work (on an unbroken journey)
- An occupational disease. This is a disease you get from the work that you do. The Department Social Protection (DSP) has a list of Prescribed Occupational Diseases.
To get Injury Benefit, you must be unfit for work for more than 3 days as a result of the accident or disease. The 3 days do not include Sundays and paid holiday leave.
If you are unfit for work for 3 days or less, you can get a declaration that you had an occupational accident. It is important to get this declaration in case your injury or disease causes illness or disability at a later date. It safeguards your future rights to benefits under the Occupational Injuries Benefit Scheme.
Injury Benefit is taxable but you are unlikely to pay tax if it is your only income.
Statutory Sick Pay and Injury Benefit
From 1 Jan 2024, Statutory Sick Pay (SSP) increased from 3 to 5 days a year. You cannot get Injury Benefit on the days that you get SSP.
If you are unfit for work for 3 days or less, you can still register an Injury Benefit claim to create a record of the occupational accident (see ‘Number of days ill or incapacitated’ below).
If your injury or illness lasts more than 5 days, your Injury Benefit starts from day 6.
If you use your 5 days of SSP in 2024 and you become ill again in the same year, you'll get Injury Benefit from day 4 of your illness (after the normal 3 waiting days).
See examples of how SSP affects Injury Benefit on gov.ie.
How to qualify for Injury Benefit
Social insurance (PRSI) contributions
To get Injury Benefit, you must be in employment insurable at PRSI Class A, D, J or M. At class M, only employees aged under 16 are covered.
You do not need a certain number of PRSI contributions to qualify for Injury Benefit.
You will qualify if you are unfit for work because of an occupational disease or an accident at work or an accident while travelling to or from work.
Civil servants who started work before April 1995 and are insured at Class B do not qualify for Injury Benefit. But you can get a declaration that an occupational accident occurred and you may qualify for other benefits under the Occupational Injuries Benefits Scheme.
Number of days ill or incapacitated
Your illness or incapacity must last for more than 3 days (not counting Sundays and paid holiday leave).
If you are unfit for work for 3 days or less
If you are unfit for work for 3 days or less, and you would otherwise qualify for Injury Benefit, you can still register a claim for Injury Benefit (see ‘How to apply for Injury Benefit’ below).
This creates a record of the workplace-related injury, which you can use to benefit under the Occupational Injuries Benefit Scheme, if illness or disablement develops at a later date.
Work and training
While you are on Injury Benefit, to help you to rehabilitate or recover you can do:
- Light work that you are not paid for (and that is not normally paid, such as voluntary work)
- Work that is part of your treatment while you are in hospital (or a similar place) where you earn under €50 a week
- Work for a charity where you earn under €50 a week
Partial Capacity Benefit
If you want to go back to work and you have transferred from Injury Benefit to Illness Benefit, you can apply for Partial Capacity Benefit.
How long is Injury Benefit paid?
Injury Benefit is not paid for the first 3 days of your illness or incapacity (when you are unfit to work).
You can get Injury Benefit for up to 26 weeks (6 months).
If you lose physical or mental ability as a result of the accident or disease, you may also get Disablement Benefit. If you are getting Disablement Benefit and do not qualify for Illness Benefit or another social welfare payment, you may be able to get Incapacity Supplement.
If you are getting a Working Family Payment (WFP) and cannot work because of an occupational illness or disease, you can continue to get WFP with your Injury Benefit for up to 36 days (6 weeks).
If you are getting Back to Work Family Dividend (BTWFD), you can continue to get BTWFD with your Injury Benefit for 36 days (6 weeks).
Rate of Injury Benefit
Weekly Injury Benefit rate in 2024
Maximum personal rate
Increase for an adult dependant
Increase for a child dependant
Child aged under 12
€46 (full rate), €23 (half rate)
Child aged 12 and over
€54 (full rate), €27 (half rate)
How to apply for Injury Benefit
You should apply for Injury Benefit within 6 weeks of becoming unfit for work. If you apply after 6 weeks, you may not get the payment.
To apply, you need to get:
- An Injury Benefit claim form (IB1) from your doctor
- A medical certificate (Certificate of Incapacity for Work) from your doctor
If your doctor submits your medical certificate online, you will get a receipt for your records. If your doctor cannot complete the medical certificate online, they will give you a paper copy.
A medical certificate must be sent every week for as long as you are unfit to work.
You can send your completed form (and medical certificate if not submitted online) by Freepost to the Injury Benefit Section – see ‘Where to apply’ below.
Closing your claim
Your doctor should mark your last medical certificate as ‘final’ before you go back to work. If they don’t, you should tell the Injury Benefit section by email at ClosemyIBclaim@welfare.ie, or by phone (see ‘Where to apply’ below).
Where to apply for Injury Benefit
For more information, contact your social welfare local office or the Occupational Injuries Benefit Section: