Williams Syndrome Association Ireland

State Aid Details

There are a number of allowances for which parents/carers of WS individuals may be eligible:

Domiciliary Care Allowance

Domiciliary Care Allowance is paid by the Department of Social Protection in respect of disabled children under 16 years who require care and attention which is considerably in excess of that normally required by a child of the same age. Eligibility is determined primarily by reference to the degree of care and attention required by the child rather than to the type of handicap involved. The parents‘ means are not taken into account when assessing eligibility. However, the child’s means are assessable. 

Carer’s Benefit

Carer’s Benefit is a payment made by the Department of Social Protection to PRSI-insured persons who leave the workforce to care for a person in need of full-time care and attention. Where a Domiciliary Care Allowance is being paid in respect of a child, no further medical certification is required. The payment is made for 65 weeks and can be claimed in separate periods subject to a minimum of 6 weeks for any given period.   

Carer’s Allowance

Carer’s Allowance is a means-tested payment made by the Department of Social Protection to carers on low incomes who live with and look after certain people in need of full-time care and attention. If the person being cared for is under 16, a Domiciliary Care Allowance must be payable in respect of this person. 

The recipient of the allowance is entitled to a Free Travel Pass in his/her own right, Free Telephone Rental Allowance, and may also qualify for Free Electricity / Natural Gas / Bottled Gas Refill Allowance, Free Television Licence and Medical Card.


Respite Care Grant

A Respite Care Grant is payable on the first Thursday in June to carers to cover the cost of respite care. The payment can be used as the carer sees fit.  Those in receipt of a Domiciliary Care Allowance, a Carer’s Benefit or a Carer’s Allowance automatically receive this payment.  Those not in receipt of the above are still eligible to apply.   If the relevant allowance is not awarded till after June you should still be entitled to the Respite Care Grant for that year – enquire at your local Social Welfare Office.


Incapacitated Child Tax Credit

Incapacitated Child Tax Credit can be claimed by a parent/guardian for a child who is permanently incapacitated, either physically or mentally, from maintaining himself or herself. Further information is available on the Revenue’s website at Revenue or your tax office.  


Home Carers Tax Credit

Home Carer’s Tax Credit is available to one-income families where one spouse stays at home to care for dependent children, the aged or incapacitated persons.    

Incapacitated Person – Credit for Employing a Carer

This tax credit may be claimed if you employ a person to care for an incapacitated relative. It must be claimed annually.  The credit is based on the cost of employing the carer.


Disability Allowance

An individual with WS who is over 16 may be eligible for Disability Allowance – A weekly allowance paid by the Department of Social Protection to people with a disability who are aged between 16 and 66. The allowance is subject to both a medical suitability and a means test. Persons for whom Domiciliary Care Allowance is being claimed will automatically be invited to claim Disability Allowance before reaching age 16. 

Recipients of the Disability Allowance automatically receive aFreeTravelPass(and may qualify for a Companion Pass) and may also qualify for a Medical Card from the Health Service Executive. 


Further Information

The Citizen Information Board, which is the national agency responsible for supporting the provision of information, advice and advocacy to the members of the public on social services, has issued a very informative booklet called ENTITLEMENTS FOR PEOPLE WITH DISABILITIES.  It can be obtained free of charge from any of the Citizens Advice and Information Centres around the country, by simply phoning them directly on 1890 777 121 to have your copy posted to you or by emailing info@ciboard.ie. It can also be read online via the “Publications” section of the website - at this link.