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Paternity Benefit

What is Paternity Benefit?

Paternity Benefit is a payment offered to employed and self-employed individuals who are on paternity leave and covered by social insurance (PRSI). It is available for any child born or adopted after 1 September 2016.

This benefit is also available to same-sex couples.

How to qualify for Paternity Benefit:

To qualify for Paternity Benefit, you must pay social insurance (PRSI) contributions at Class A, E, H, or S (self-employed). If you're a member of the Defence Forces and pay PRSI at Class H, you are insured for Paternity Benefit, but it is not payable while you're in service.

Rates of Payment:

The rate for Paternity Benefit is €274 per week, for two weeks.

Half-rate Paternity Benefit may be available to those already receiving certain social welfare payments.

It is paid directly into your current or deposit account at your bank or building society; it cannot be paid into a mortgage account.

Your employer might continue to pay your full salary while you're on paternity leave and might require your Paternity Benefit to be paid to them.

Payment increases:

If you have dependents, you might be eligible for a higher rate of Paternity Benefit. The rate of Paternity Benefit (excluding increases for dependents) is compared with the rate of Illness Benefit (including increases for dependents) that would be paid if you were absent from work due to illness. The higher of the two rates is paid.


Paternity Benefit is subject to income tax, but it is not subject to the Universal Social Charge (USC) or PRSI.

How to Apply:

To apply, you need to submit either an online application or a Paternity Benefit (PB1) form, along with a certificate PB2 or PB3 that confirms when your baby is due or was born.

Paternity leave can be taken at any time within the first 26 weeks following birth or adoption.

If you are an employee

your employer must certify your paternity leave. You need to ask your spouse’s or partner’s doctor for a certificate that confirms when your baby is due or was born and give this certificate and Paternity Benefit: Employer Certificate Application Form (PB2) to your employer. Your employer will then complete the form, and you include this form when you apply for Paternity Benefit.

If you are self-employed

your spouse’s or partner’s doctor must certify your paternity leave. You need to ask the doctor to complete Paternity Benefit: Medical Certificate Application Form (PB3), then include it when you apply for Paternity Benefit.

Employees should apply for Paternity Benefit at least four weeks before planning to go on paternity leave, and self-employed individuals should apply at least 12 weeks before planning to go on leave.

Note: Failure to apply for Paternity Benefit within 26 weeks of the birth of your baby may result in loss of benefit.

Paternity Benefit Section
Address: Widowed or Surviving Civil Partner Grant,
Department of Social Protection,
McCarter's Road,
Co Donegal,
F93 CH79

Website: www.gov.ie/patb
Email: paternityben@welfare.ie
Phone number: 01 4715898 or 0818 690690