Know Your Rights: Partial Capacity Benefit 

Posted by


Know Your Rights has been compiled by Kerry Citizens Information Service which provides a free and confidential service to the public…

Question: I am getting Invalidity Pension and I’d like to go back to work. I can’t work full-time because of my disability and this will affect my earnings. Is there any support available? 

Answer: The Partial Capacity Benefit (PCB) scheme allows you to return to work or self-employment and continue to get a social welfare payment. There is no restriction on what you can earn or the number of hours you can work.

You must get written approval from the Department of Social Protection before you start work.  You should also get approval from your doctor.

Continued below…


To qualify for Partial Capacity Benefit:

• You must have been getting Illness Benefit (for at least 6 months) or Invalidity Pension.
• The restriction on your capacity for work must be assessed as moderate, severe, or profound by the Department of Social Protection. If it is assessed as mild, you do not qualify.

When you apply, the Department of Social Protection assesses your medical condition and its restriction on your capacity for work. You get a percentage of your personal rate of Illness Benefit or Invalidity Pension payment depending on your capacity for work.

If your capacity is assessed as:

• Profound –  you get 100% of the payment
• Severe – you get 75% of the payment
• Moderate – you get 50% of the payment

If you are coming from Invalidity Pension, your Partial Capacity Benefit will continue for a maximum of 3 years (156 weeks). However, you can apply for PCB again. You will be reassessed by the Department to determine if you qualify for the scheme.

If you are coming from Illness Benefit, your Partial Capacity Benefit payment will last as long as you have an underlying entitlement to Illness Benefit.

If you get Partial Capacity Benefit it may affect other secondary benefits you are getting from the Department of Social Protection.

You can find out more about Partial Capacity Benefit on

• During COVID-19, you can find comprehensive integrated information online at and you can get daily updates on what’s changed on Twitter at @citizensinfo. You can also get information and advice from:

Tralee on Tel: Call 0761 07 7860, Monday – Friday (10am-4pm)
The Citizens Information Phone Service: Call 0761 07 4000, Monday to Friday, 9am – 8pm

Our national call back service: Visit to request a phone call from an information officer

Comments are closed.