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SOCIAL WELFARE (CONSOLIDATION) ACT, 1981
Rules as to Calculation of Menus
[1952, Sch. 7; 1979, s. 13]
1. Subject to paragraphs (2) and (3), in calculating the means of a person, account shall be taken of the following—
(1) the yearly value of any property belonging to the person (not being property personally used or enjoyed by the person) which is invested or is otherwise put to profitable use by the person or which though capable of investment or profitable use is not so invested or put to profitable use by the person, the yearly value of the property being calculated as follows—
(a) the first £200 of the capital value of the property shall be excluded, and
(b) the yearly value of the next £375 of the capital value of the property shall be taken to be one-twentieth part of the capital value, and
(c) the yearly value of so much of the capital value of the property as exceeds £575 shall be taken to be one-tenth part of the capital value,
but no account shall be taken under any other provision of these Rules of any appropriation of the property for the purpose of current expenditure.
 MP, s. 16]
(2) In the application of paragraph (1) for the purposes of a widow's or orphan's (non-contributory) pension under Part III , the following subparagraphs shall be substituted for subparagraphs (a), (b) and (c) of that paragraph.
[1979, s. 14]
“(a) the first £200 of the capital value of the property shall be excluded, and
(b) in the case of a widow who has a qualified child or qualified children normally residing with her, an additional £100 of the capital value of the property shall be excluded in respect of each such qualified child in respect of whom an increase of pension is claimable, and
(c) the yearly value of any remainder of the capital value of the property shall be taken to be one-twentieth part of such remainder.”.
[1975, s. 5]
(3) Where, for the purposes of an old age pension, blind pension or a widow's (non-contributory) pension, the means are or include means assessed in accordance with paragraph (1) or paragraphs (1) and (2), as the case may be, and the means as so assessed are not less than £52, the means shall be taken to be increased by £52.
(4) All income in cash (including, in the case of widow's and orphan's (non-contributory) pensions under Part III the net cash value of any non-cash earnings derived from personal exertions) which the person may reasonably expect to receive during the year succeeding the date of calculation, but excluding—
(a) any sums arising from the investment or profitable use of property (not being property personally used or enjoyed by the person),
[1944 CA, s. 15; S.I. No 168 of 1977]
(c) any income arising from a bonus under a scheme administered by the Minister for Education for the making of special grants to parents or guardians resident in the Gaeltacht or Breac-Ghaeltacht (as defined in such scheme) of children attending primary schools,
[1965 MP, s. 15]
(d) (i) any income from a charitable organisation, being a body whose activities are carried on otherwise than for profit (but excluding any public or local authority) and one of whose functions is to assist persons in need by making grants of money to them, and
(ii) any income, other than income of the kind specified in clause (i), from voluntary or gratuitous payments in so far as it does not exceed £52.25 per year,
[1960 MP, s. 13; 1970 HA, s. 6]
(e) any income arising by way of payments under section 44 of the Health Act, 1947 , by a health board to or in respect of the person or the person's dependants, and any income arising by way of payments on foot of a maintenance allowance under section 69 of the Health Act, 1970 , to the person,
[S.I. No. 67 of 1966]
(f) subject to Rule 5, an amount of an allowance, dependant's allowance, disability pension or wound pension under the Army Pensions Acts, 1923 to 1980, (including, for the purposes of this subparagraph, a British war pension) or of a combination of such allowances and such pensions except so far as such amount exceeds £80 per year,
(g) in the case of a blind person, his earnings (including wages and profit from any form of self-employment) as a blind person except and in so far as the annual amount of such earnings is calculated to exceed an amount made up as follows—
[19977, s. 3; 1980, s. 5]
(i) if the person is a man—£312, plus £208 if he has a wife living with or wholly or mainly maintained by him or, being a single man or widower, is maintaining wholly or mainly a female person over the age of 16 years having the care of one or more than one qualified child who normally resides or reside with him, plus £104 for each qualified child normally residing with him,
(ii) if the person is a woman—£312, plus £104 for each qualified child normally residing with her, plus £208 if she is wholly or mainly maintaining her husband who is incapable of self-support by reason of some physical or mental infirmity,
(h) any income arising from a grant or allowance in pursuance of a scheme for promoting the welfare of the blind prepared under section 2 of the Blind Persons Act, 1920,
[1979, s. 16]
(i) in the case of a person who is not a blind person, and who has a qualified child or qualified children who normally resides or reside with him, all earnings derived by him from his personal exertions except and in so far as the annual amount of such earnings is calculated to exceed £104 for each such child.
[1962 MP, s. 14]
(j) in the case of a person who is not a blind person, any moneys, except so far as they exceed £52 per year, received by the person in respect of employment of the kind referred to in paragraph 7 of Part I of the First Schedule under a scheme that is, in the opinion of the Minister, charitable in character and purpose,
[1965 MP, s. 15]
[1967 MP, s. 12]
(l) any moneys received under a statutory scheme administered by the Minister for Labour in respect of redundancy or by way of financial assistance to unemployed persons changing residence,
and such income shall, in the absence of other means for ascertaining it, be taken to be that actually received during the year immediately preceding the date of calculation.
[1970, s. 36; 1979, s. 18]
(5) The yearly value of any advantage accruing to the person from the use or enjoyment of property (other than a domestic dwelling or a farm building owned and occupied, furniture and personal effects) which is personally used or enjoyed by the person, but for the purposes of this Rule, a cottage provided under the Labourers' Acts, 1883 to 1965, and vested in the person or the spouse of that person pursuant to those Acts or pursuant to the Housing Acts, 1966 to 1979, shall not be treated as property which is personally used or enjoyed by that person or the spouse of that person so long as payment of the purchase annuity has not been completed.
2. (1) Subject to paragraph (2), if it appears that any person has, whether before or after the commencement of this Act, directly or indirectly deprived himself of any income or property in order to qualify himself for the receipt of the pension in question, or for the receipt thereof at a higher rate than that to which he would otherwise be entitled, that income or the yearly value of that property shall for the purposes of these Rules be taken to be part of the means of that person.
(2) (a) Subject to subparagraph (b), paragraph (1) shall not apply to any assignment—-
(i) which is an assignment to a child or children of the assignor, and
(ii) which is an assignment of property consisting of a farm of land (together with or without the stock and chattels thereon) the rateable value of which (including the buildings thereon) does not exceed £30 and of which the assignor is the owner and the occupier or the occupier only.
(b) Subparagraph (a) shall not apply to an assignment by a person who, at any time within the three years ending when the relevant claim for a pension or application for an increase of a pension is made, was, as respects any agricultural lands exceeding £30 in rateable value or aggregate rateable value, the owner and occupier thereof, the occupier only thereof or the owner and occupier of part thereof and the occupier only of the remainder.
(c) In this paragraph “assignment” includes any form of conveyance, transfer or other transaction by which a person parts with the ownership or possession of property.
(a) the means of the person shall be taken to be one-half of the total means of the married couple;
(b) the person shall be deemed to be entitled to one-half of all property to which the person or the other member of the married couple is entitled or to which the person and the other member of the married couple are jointly entitled;
(c) for the purposes of this Rule, the means of each member of the married couple shall first be determined in accordance with these Rules (each being regarded as an applicant for a pension or a pension at a higher rate) and the total means shall be the sum of the means of each member so determined;
(d) where one member of the married couple dies, nothing which was reckoned for the purposes of pension, or would (if such deceased member had been entitled to receive any pension) have been so reckoned, as means of the deceased member shall be so reckoned as means of the surviving member for the purpose of reducing the pension of the surviving member if any payment in respect of that pension was made before the death of the deceased member or becomes payable in respect of a period previous or part of which was previous to that death.
(2) Where a husband is separated from his wife, any sum paid by him to her under a separation order shall be deducted in calculating his means.
4. Notwithstanding these Rules, where—
[1979, s. 17]
(b) a pension (in this Rule referred to as “the other pension”), not being a pension mentioned in paragraph (a), is in course of payment to or in respect of the person or the spouse of the person or both of them, and
(c) an increase of the other pension occurs on or after 6th April, 1979,
in calculating the means of the person or of the spouse or of both of them for the purposes of Chapter 3 or 4 (as the case may require) of Part III , any portion of the increase of the other pension which, if it were reckoned as means, would result in a reduction in the amount of the pension or combined pensions (as the case may be) which would be greater than the amount of the increase, shall not be reckoned as means.
[1968 MP, s. 13]
5. Notwithstanding this Schedule, the amount of any allowance, special allowance, dependant's allowance, disability pension or wound pension under the Army Pensions Acts, 1923 to 1980, or pension under the Military Service (Pensions) Acts, 1924 to 1964, arising out of service in the period commencing on 23rd April, 1916, and ending on 30th September, 1923, or pension under the Connaught Rangers (Pensions) Acts, 1936 to 1964, shall be disregarded in the calculation of means for the purposes of Chapters 3 and 4 of Part III .