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Professional Artists on Jobseeker’s Allowance

From: Department of Employment Affairs and Social Protection

What the Scheme for Professional Artists on Jobseeker’s Allowance is

If you are a self-employed professional artist getting Jobseeker's Allowance, you can apply for this scheme. If you qualify, you do not have to take part in the department’s activation programme for one year.

This allows you to focus on your artistic work for one year.

The rates of payment are the same as for Jobseeker's Allowance.

How to qualify

To qualify for the scheme, you must be aged over 18 and under 66.

You must also:

  • be unemployed
  • be capable of work
  • be available for and genuinely seeking full-time work
  • satisfy the means test
  • meet the habitual residence condition
  • be a member of one of the listed certifying professional organisations and provide a certificate or declaration from a professional body as to your status as a professional artist
  • be registered as self-employed with Revenue

At least 50% of your income must be derived from your work as a professional artist in the previous year.

Examples include:

  • sales of artworks, books or artistic editions
  • royalties
  • bursaries and grants arising from status as an artist
  • book readings
  • appearance or lecture fees
  • artists' fees on commissioned works, exhibitions, consultancy, selection or artistic advisory panels, education and outreach programmes,design consultants.
  • art awards and prizes
  • artistic residencies, technical and installation support

When you are being assessed for the scheme, you will be means tested as a self-employed person.

A means test is an assessment of all of your household income, savings, shares, investments or property that you own apart from your own home. Your means test will also include any income that your spouse, civil partner or cohabiting partner has.

The department adds your income from all sources (including your income from work) and, from this, calculates the means you have each week.

Your means is used to work out what payment you may receive.

Certain expenses related to your profession are allowable.

Rates of payment

The rates of payment are the same as for Jobseeker's Allowance.

Apply

You can apply to your local Intreo Centre or Social Welfare Branch Office.

You will need to provide:

  • a certificate or declaration from a professional body as to your status as a professional artist from one of the listed certifying professional organisations
  • documents from Revenue showing that at least 50% of your income in the previous year came from your work as a professional artist.
  • identification – your public service card, passport or driving licence
  • proof of your address – a utility bill or letter from a government department
  • evidence of your income, including bank statements

You can collect your weekly Jobseeker’s Allowance payment from your nearest Post Office. You must bring valid photo ID with you to collect your payment.

Any one of the following is considered to be valid photo ID:

  • Public Services Card
  • driving licence
  • passport
  • GNIB card
  • National Identity Card (for EU/EEA nationals)

If you are already getting Jobseeker’s Allowance and you think you might qualify for the scheme, you can contact your your local Intreo Centre or Social Welfare Branch Office

Operational Guidelines

Operational Guidelines: Jobseeker's Allowance