COVID-19

IFA COVID-19 Guidelines and FAQs


COVID-19 Alerts and Updates

It is advised that farmers carry a form of ID with them at all times during the COVID-19 restrictions. A drivers licence and/or your IFA membership card will suffice.

If you have employees the advice is to provide them with a letter. We have developed a template which you can download from here. This template has two pages with the same wording, the first page can be edited directly, the second page can be printed off and filled in by hand.

Fáilte Ireland, in collaboration with industry groups, has created a series of guidelines for re-opening tailored to the various sectors of the Irish tourism industry. The guidelines are designed to support business owners and management in every step as they tackle the challenges specific to their industry. Full details of guidelines available here.

The Govt. has released its latest poster information sheet with full details on the reopenings and the latest public health advice. Full details of Phase 2 are available now at gov.ie/phase2

The poster information sheet is available to download from here.

The National Driver Licence Services (NDLS) has extended the validity of driving licences and learner permits. All Driving licences and Learner Permits expiring from 1 March to 30 June 2020 have been extended by four months. For more information please see the latest FAQ’s

The validity period of Driver theory test certificates, Certificates of competency, IBT and CPC certificates expiring between 1 March 2020 and 30 June 2020 have also been extended by four months. For more information please see the latestFAQ’s


Message from IFA President, Tim Cullinan

The challenges posed by Covid-19 require a collective effort.

From speaking to many members, I know there is a particular concern about keeping farms operational in the event of illness.

IFA has over 940 branches around the country and it’s important that farmers look out for other farmers in their parish. I would ask you to be conscious of older neighbours and those with underlying medical conditions.

If you need help, I want to assure you that you that as an IFA member you are not alone, even if you are observing social isolation protocols.

While IFA has suspended all meetings at branch, county and national level we remain operational and our staff are available to assist you. Contact details are available here.

IFA is a member of the Government stakeholder forum on COVID-19 and we will share relevant information on this page with members as we receive it.

The agricultural community will play its part, as it always has, with others to keep the supply chain operating and food on people’s tables. Working together, we will all come though this very challenging time.


IFA COVID-19 Supports

IFA Submission to Oireachtas Special Committee on COVID-19 Response

‘Re-opening the Economy – the State’s Response and Support for Businesses’

Have You a Plan B?

For any farmer who is unable to farm, it’s important that someone can step in to assist. We have put together a ‘Plan B’ document to help with this.

IFA COVID-19 Contacts

We are here for you. IFA remains operational and our staff are available to assist you.

IFA Submission on COVID-19 Supports

IFA has put a detailed set of proposals to the Government and the EU Commission in response to the COVID-19 pandemic.


Essential Services

IFA Employment Law Contact
For issues relating to:
  • COVID-19 employment law issues
  • Work permits
IFA Contact: Niamh Brennan
Phone: 01 4260347
Email: niamhbrennan@ifa.ie

Frequently asked questions regarding essential workers/services

On the 28th March 2020 the Government issued the latest guidelines for ‘Essential Services’.

Full guidelines available here.

Agriculture and fishing are deemed essential services and are exempt from the current directive to stay at home until April 12th.

This includes farmers, farm labourers, farm relief service workers and others involved directly or indirectly in crop and animal production and related activities (including veterinary services), and workers involved in fishing.

Read the full details here.

If you are a farmer or an agricultural worker you should carry one form of identification with you at all times such as a driver’s licence or your IFA membership card.

Read the full details here.

If you have farm workers/ employees the advice is to provide them with a letter. We have developed a template letter which you can download here.

This template has two pages with the same word formatting, the first page can be edited directly, the second page can be printed off and filled in by hand.

Lab testing for soil and animal health and welfare is deemed an essential service.

However some private labs, particularly those involved in COVID-19 testing may have capacity issues.
Labs are as a result prioritising testing services.

Before submitting samples, other than for BVD testing which is continuing as normal, farmers should contact their lab.


Health & Safety

IFA Health and Safety Contact
For issues relating to:
  • COVID-19 precautions
  • Farmer guidelines
IFA Contact: William Shortall
Phone: 01 4260370
Email: williamshortall@ifa.ie

Frequently asked questions regarding essential workers/services

It is very important that you look after yourself and those around by adhering to the HSE advise relating to COVID-19/ coronavirus.

It can take up to 14 days for symptoms of coronavirus to appear. Look out for one, some or all of the main symptoms:

  • a cough – this can be any kind of cough, not just dry
  • shortness of breath
  • breathing difficulties
  • fever (high temperature – 38 degrees Celsius or above) or chills
  • other symptoms are fatigue, headaches, sore throat, aches and pains

 

  • People who are over 60 years of age and you are particularly vulnerable if you are over 75 years of age
  • Have a long-term medical condition – for example, heart disease, lung disease, diabetes, cancer or high blood pressure
  • Have a weak immune system (immunosuppressed)

 

  • Coronavirus is spread in a sneeze or cough droplets. To infect you, it has to get from an infected person’s nose or mouth into your eyes, nose or mouth. This can be direct or indirect (on hands, objects, surfaces etc.)
  • Physical distancing is important to help slow the spread of coronavirus. It does this by minimising contact between potentially infected individuals and healthy individuals.

  • Only essential visitors/delivery drivers/vets/contractors should be allowed onto your farm at this time.
  • If you have to interact with these visitors, practices social distancing, keep a space of 2 metres (6.5 feet) between you and the visitor/s.
  • Do not shake hands or make close contact, if possible
  • Check with your local processor/feed merchant to adhere to any specific protocols
  • Ensure that milk collection, delivery drivers have easy access to bulk tanks and feed bins

  • Complete IFA’s Covid-19 Plan B form
  • Self-isolation means staying indoors and completely avoiding contact with other people.
  • You need to do this if you have symptoms of coronavirus.

Can animals spread the COVID-19 virus to humans?

There is currently no evidence that animals can spread COVID-19 either to humans or to other animals.

The exact origin of the outbreak of COVID-19 virus in the city of Wuhan in China in December 2019 is still unknown. Although scientific analysis of the viral molecule indicates that initial transmission to humans may have come from a wild animal source such as bats, the exact pathway has not be identified and there is currently no evidence subsequent to that of any spread of the virus from animals to humans.

Can the virus that causes COVID-19 be transmitted to humans through food?

There is no evidence to suggest that COVID-19 can be spread through the consumption of food according to the European Food Safety Authority (EFSA).

There are no cases of COVID-19 to date that have shown that they were infected through the consumption of contaminated food. In previous human coronavirus epidemics, food was not found to be a source of infection. However, surface contamination of food with the virus through sneezing or coughing for example is possible. It is important to observe good hygienic precautions when preparing food.

What if my animal requires veterinary attention and there is no case of COVID-19 in my household?

Veterinary practices are essential services to safeguard animal health and welfare and they and their staff need to be protected from possible exposure to COVID-19. Arrangements for the care of your animal should be made in consultation with your veterinary practitioner.

No person should turn up at a veterinary practice unannounced – this is in line with government advice to protect human health. Telephone the veterinary practice to make the appropriate arrangements in advance. Observe both the HSE guidelines and biosecurity protocols which the veterinary practice may have put in place for the protection of human health.

The Department’s full FAQs regarding Covid-19 for animal owners is available here.

The European Commission Directorate-General for Health and Food Safety has published a ‘questions and answers’ document relating to COVID-19 and farmed and domestic animals.

The full document is available here.

During this period with many restrictions in place, securing your property and equipment does not have to be a complicated process. With younger family members out of college and school an ideal opportunity exists for some ‘’ security housekeeping’ to be done.

Simple steps can offer the best protection for your home and equipment.

Click here for some simple yes/no questions to start the process.

The Gardai have provided some home prevention advice in a handy booklet which you can download here.

Advice includes:

  • KEEP UNEXPECTED CALLERS OUT – Do not open the door. Use the door chain. Look for ID.
  • Use only the services of people you know and trust.
  • If you require assistance call your local garda station.
  • Keep a lookout for friends and neighbours while adhering to appropriate physical distancing.


Banking, Finance and Revenue

IFA Banking and Taxation Contact
For issues relating to:
  • COVID-19 credit issues
  • Bank problems
  • Legal issues
  • Revenue Commissioners
IFA Contact: Donal Sheehan
Phone: 01 4260341
Email: donalsheehan@ifa.ie

COVID-19 Credit Guarantee Scheme

For a detailed guide to the Covid-19 Credit Guarantee Scheme please see here.

1. MilkFlex Scheme:

  • Dairy farmers can avail of low-cost finance through the MilkFlex scheme
  • Loans are originated with Finance Ireland and backed by finance provided by Ireland Strategic Investment Fund (ISIF) and Rabobank
  • Is facilitated through participating Co-ops.
  • It provides milk suppliers with a funding product that helps protect cashflows from the impact of milk price volatility.
  • It features in-built ‘flex triggers’ that can adjust the repayment terms in response to movements in milk price and disease outbreak.
  • Repayments will also be adjusted to allow for seasonality.
  • Investment in: on-farm productive assets to support an existing or growing dairy farm enterprise (including dairy livestock, milking platform infrastructure and land improvement); on-farm energy efficiency and renewable energy; environmental investments and agricultural technologies that deliver on-farm efficiencies.
  • For more info: https://www.financeireland.ie/wp-content/uploads/2018/06/MilkFlex-update-2018-v07-online.pdf

2. SME Finance and Leasing

  • SCBI has allocated €17m to SME Finance and Leasing
  • This has introduced much needed competition into the asset finance market
  • Funds can be used to finance 2nd hand machinery and equipment.
  • Average loans of €15,000 up to the value of €70,000.
  • For more info: https://smeleasing.ie/

3.  Microfinance Ireland COVID 19 Business Loan

  • Budget €17m
  • Farmers and agricultural contractors are eligible to apply for Microfinance Ireland COVID 19 Business Loans
  • Eligibility criteria including:
    • those not in a position to lend from banks and other commercial lending providers
    • 15% of actual or projected turnover or profit is negatively impacted by COVID 19
  • The loans can be used for working capital and business changes arising out COVID 19
  • Loan values ranging from €5,000 to €50,000
  • Loan term typically 3 years but can extend to 5
  • Repayment breaks – 0% interest and zero repayments for the first 6 months
  • Repayment structure – fixed repayments
  • No penalty applies for early repayments
  • interest rate – APR is 5.5%. However, if you apply through Microfinance Ireland application partners a lower rate of 4.5% APR applies.
  • Microfinance Ireland partners include Local Development Companies – also known as Local Area Partnerships or LEADER Partnerships
  • For more info: https://microfinanceireland.ie/loan-packages/covid19/

 

  • The main banks, on request, are providing increased working capital and overdrafts in addition to payment flexibility on loan facilities including: repayment breaks on interest and or capital for an initial period of up to 3 months.
  • Breaks are also available on hire purchase and lease repayments.
  • Farmers who are not in a position to secure or were refused loan facilities from their bank are entitled to apply to Microfinance Ireland for a loan.

NB. Do not simply stop direct debits for loan repayments or exceed your overdraft limit without talking to the bank first as this could affect your credit history. In worst case scenario your loan can be classified as non-performing.

Banks

It is very important to contact your bank as soon as possible if you are being impacted or think your income is going to be impacted by COVID-19.  They will be able to support and talk to you about how to mitigate your situation.  The below applies to the 3 main banks – AIB, Bank of Ireland and Ulster Bank:

The three main banks have differing supports, but currently they are offering a 3 month payment break, which must be applied for.

Emergency working capital is being made available by the banks, they are trying to process applications as quickly as possible.  Applying online is the fastest method.

If you do not have an overdraft facility, but need one, or if you think you will need an extension to your existing one, you must ring your bank. Currently it is better to look for a loan as the rates are high on overdrafts.

Contact your bank, the offers range from applying for complete breaks for a period of time or an interest only arrangement. Conditions will apply.

This is an unprecedented situation, it is important to keep in touch with your bank. As the impact of Covid-19 develops, Government and banking supports are likely to change.

Business Continuity Voucher

The new Business Continuity Voucher, available through Local Enterprise Offices, is designed for businesses across every sector that employ up to 50 people. The voucher is worth up to €2,500 in third party consultancy costs and can be used by companies and sole traders to develop short-term and long-term strategies to respond to the COVID-19 pandemic.

More details available here.

Bank of Ireland:

BUISINESS customers who are concerned about the impact of COVID-19 on their business are encouraged to make contact with their Business Relationship Manager or ring 0818 200 348. If a repayment break required and no assigned Business Relationship Manager, fill out the form here.

Bank of Ireland Finance payment breaks please contact 1850 812 080 and choose option 3

PERSONAL – Personal loan payment breaks or flexible arrangements call 1850 222 200 or 01 488 2019 (lines open 9am to 5pm Monday to Friday).


AIB

AIB have provided us with a list of its agri team contacts which is available here.

BUSINESS For payment break – dedicated business COVID-19 support line 0818 300113; open Mon – Fri 9am- 5pm or by filling out this request form

Specific Farmer Credit line (always available, not just for Covid-19) 1890 47 88 33 Mon – Fri 8am – 9pm, Say 9am – 6pm

PERSONAL Tel. 1890 724 724  Mon – Fri 8am – 9pm, Sat 9am – 6pm


ULSTER

BUSINESS Team of Relationship Managers to offer help and support to form plans to mitigate the impact of Covid-19.  Tel: 1850 211 690

PERSONAL Payment holidays on loan deferral for up to 3 months (tel. 1850 201 210)

Fraudsters are exploiting the spread of COVID-19 coronavirus to facilitate various types of fraud and cybercrime. To protect yourself from these threats please continue to be vigilant with phishing emails received or emails with attachments that may contain malware


Inspections & Testing

IFA Farm Schemes Contact
For issues relating to:
  • COVID-19 farm inspections (Denis Griffin)
  • COVID-19: TB testing (Tomas Bourke)
IFA Contact:

Denis Griffin

Tomas Bourke

Phone: Denis Griffin: 01 4260346

Tomas Bourke: 01 4260364

Email:

Denis Griffin:

denisgriffin@ifa.ie

Tomas Bourke: tomasbourke@ifa.ie

The Department of Agriculture has stated that it has generally paused routine on-farm visits for two weeks. However, some essential inspections may be necessary on a risk basis and some inspection related work will be carried out over the phone. The situation will be kept under review. For example, it may become necessary to resume more routine inspections where the conduct of inspections is necessary to avoid delays in payments.

Full details available here.

IFA has secured an extension from 42 to 120 days of age for calves exempt from testing. These calves can be traded internally up to this age without a test requirement.

Farmers who have to delay tests for COVID will also be given a period of 28 days after the test due date where they can trade before the status of the herd is suspended.

The new protocol published by the DAFM is available here.

Lab testing for soil and animal health and welfare is deemed an essential service.

However some private labs, particularly those involved in COVID-19 testing may have capacity issues. Labs are as a result prioritising testing services.

Before submitting samples, other than for BVD testing which is continuing as normal, farmers should contact their lab.


Employers

IFA Employment Law Contact
For issues relating to:
  • COVID-19 employment law issues
  • Work permits
IFA Contact:

Niamh Brennan

Phone:

01 4260347

Email:

niamhbrennan@ifa.ie

This period of uncertainty is a challenging time for employers in the agricultural sector especially. Below are a number of FAQ’s, guides and updates which may assist you during this time.

You are permitted to ask the staff member to return home.

 

It is advised to follow all HSE guidelines and display the information poster clearly around the workplace. You can get a copy of the COVID-19 information poster here.

If a worker/employee is diagnosed with COVID-19 or advised to self-isolate, they can apply for income support such as Illness Benefit, or COVID-19 Pandemic Unemployment Payment. More information on these payments in our dedicated COVID-19 social welfare section.

The rules for Illness Benefit and Supplementary Welfare Allowance have been changed to help prevent the transmission of coronavirus. The changes mean that if an employee is diagnosed with COVID-19 or are suspected of having COVID-19 and are medically required to self-isolate, they can get income support. Employees laid off can also apply for the COVID-19 Pandemic Unemployment Payment.

The rules for Illness Benefit and Supplementary Welfare Allowance have been changed to help prevent the transmission of coronavirus. The changes mean that if an employee is diagnosed with COVID-19 or are suspected of having COVID-19 and are medically required to self-isolate, they can get income support.

This is called a temporary lay-off.  During this period your employee can apply for a new COVID-19 Pandemic Unemployment Payment. This new payment is for employees and self-employed people who have lost employment due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

Workers/employees can apply for short-term work support. It is a form of Jobseekers Allowance if a worker has been temporarily placed on a shorter working week. The payment is made in respect of the worker’s salary for the days they are no longer working.

Employees DO NOT NEED to go to the Intreo Centre to apply, you can apply either by post or online. The form is a simple one-page form, detailed instructions on how complete form are available on www.welfare.ie.  You do not need a Public Services Card (PSC) to apply for the payment.

  • As part of the COVID-19 measures, Revenue will operate a Temporary Wage Subsidy Scheme. The scheme, enables employees, whose employers are affected by the pandemic, to receive significant supports directly from their employer.
  • The scheme will run for 12 weeks from 26 March 2020.
  • Employers are encouraged to facilitate employees by operating the scheme, by retaining employees on their books and by making best efforts to maintain a significant, or 100% income, for the period of the scheme.
  • For more details on the Wage Subsidy Scheme see here.

Yes, the then Minister for Justice Charlie Flanagan announced that non-EEA nationals with immigration permission due to expire in the near future will be granted an automatic renewal for their visas for two months.

Yes, workers are obliged to self-isolate for 14 days before commencing work.

As a response to the COVID-19 public health threat, the Department of Business, Enterprise and Innovation has implemented a contingency plan to ensure that the Employment Permit system will continue to operate in all scenarios.

With effect from Monday 30th March, the Department has implemented remote working arrangements for staff and has adjusted operations to provide for the acceptance of electronic/scanned documents for Reviews, Stamp 4 letters of support and Trusted Partner applications and will issue the outcomes of these via e-mail rather than through the post.  The Department has also agreed with Immigration Service Delivery, Department of Justice and Equality, as a temporary measure, soft copy arrangements for issuing employment permits.

Full details of these changes, and all other changes along with other important information for users of the employment permit system are available here.


Social Welfare

IFA Social Welfare Contact
For issues relating to:
  • Covid-19 Farmer social welfare entitlements
  • Fair deal
IFA Contact:

Geraldine O’Sullivan

Phone:

01 4260381

Email:

geraldineosullivan@ifa.ie

COVID-19 Pandemic Unemployment Payment

The COVID-19 Pandemic Unemployment Payment is a new social welfare payment available to self-employed and employees who have lost their job due to the COVID-19 (Coronavirus) pandemic. The payment will be paid until such a time as this emergency passes.

If you are a farmer who has lost your off-farm job (either self-employed or employed work) or your partner/spouse has lost their job during the COVID-19 (coronavirus) pandemic then you may qualify for the payment.

From 16 October 2020 until 31 January 2021 the COVID-19 Pandemic Unemployment Payment will be paid at 4 rates.

  • if you earned €400 or more – you will receive €350
  • if you earned between €300 and €399.99 per week – the rate of the COVID-19 Pandemic Unemployment Payment is €300 per week
  • if you earned between €200 and €299.99 per week – the rate of the COVID-19 Pandemic Unemployment Payment will be €250 per week
  • if you earned less than €200 per week – you will receive €203 per week, which is the same as the primary rate of Jobseeker’s Benefit

It is an incentive available to self-employed people who are in receipt of the COVID-19 Pandemic Unemployment Payment for at least 16 weeks and are resuming part time self-employment for up to 24 hours per week.

How to qualify?

To qualify for this payment you must:

  • be self-employed
  • be tax and PRSI compliant
  • be aged over 18 and under 66 years
  • be resident in Ireland
  • have been receiving the COVID-19 Pandemic Unemployment Payment for at least 16 weeks
  • return to self-employment for up to a maximum 24 hours per week (there is no limit on the amount you can earn)
  • submit a monthly statement of hours worked each week
  • be genuinely seeking to increase your level of work

What is the payment rate?

It is €128.60 per week.

If you are farmer who has incurred a substantial loss of income as a result of restrictions, and as a result of this collapse in income would be available to take up other full-time employment if it was available, can qualify for the COVID-19 Pandemic Unemployment Payment.

To qualify for the new payment, you must be:

  • an employee or self-employed
  • between 18 and 66 years old
  • your trading income has ceased due to the COVID-19 (Coronavirus) pandemic
  • your ceased trading as self-employed due to the pandemic
  • Full-time farmers who have ceased trading and whose trading income has collapsed to the extent that they would be available to take up other full time employment if it was available to them, can claim the COVID-19 Pandemic Unemployment Payment
  • Part-time farmers who have lost off-farm employment as a result of the pandemic and who would be in a position to take up other full-time employment if it was available are entitled to the payment of €350 per week.
  • A farmer and/or spouse in receipt of Carers Allowance and Carers Benefit, including those who are working fewer than 18 hours per week, who have ‘ceased trading’ or lost their employment can claim the payment of €350 per week.
  • A farmer in receipt of Disability Allowance that has ‘ceased trading’ or lost employment is entitled to the payment. The payment will be adjusted to take account of the Disability Allowance payment.
  • Students are also eligible to apply for payment if they have lost employment due to the coronavirus restrictions.

A farmer in receipt of Farm Assist payments is NOT entitled to COVID-19 Pandemic Unemployment Payment. However, if their income has deteriorated as a result of restrictions or poorer market returns, they can look for a reassessment.

A farmer in receipt of Rural Social Scheme is NOT entitled to COVID-19 Pandemic Unemployment Payment, but the existing payment is maintained.

Yes, if they are fully unemployed due to being unable to trade and whose trading income has collapsed to the extent that they would be available to take up other full time employment if it was available to them, then they would be entitled to claim the Pandemic unemployment payment.

They will receive a flat rate payment of €350 per week. This is equal to the standard jobseeker rate for a two adult household. This payment can increase if they have a number of child dependants.

For example if they have a qualifying adult and at least one qualifying child or they are not claiming for a qualified adult but they have at least 4 qualifying children. To claim the higher payment they should complete the Jobseeker’s Benefit for the Self Employed claim form on www.mywelfare.ie. It may take some time to process this additional payment but they will in the meantime receive a minimum of €350 and any additional payment will be backdated when it is paid.

Yes, part-time farmers who have lost off-farm employment and who have suffered a substantial loss of income and who would be available to take up alternative full-time employment can also qualify.

Yes, they can apply for the pandemic unemployment payment. The Disability Allowance payment will be adjusted to take account of the difference between the COVID-19 payment and their normal employment income. This may take some time and any overpayments or arrears will be adjusted in future payments and arrears will be paid as soon as possible.

Yes, recipients of Carers Allowance and Carers Benefit, including those who are working less than 18 hours per week, who have lost their employment including people engaged in farming due to effects of the pandemic and are not being paid by their employer can claim The COVID-19 Pandemic Unemployment Payment.

You DO NOT NEED to go to the Intreo Centre to apply, you can apply either by post or online. The form is a simple one-page form, detailed instructions on how complete form are available from here.  You do not need a Public Services Card (PSC) to apply for the payment.

Applying by post

Options to get the COVID-19 Pandemic Unemployment Payment application form:

  • Download it here.
  • Get the form posted to you by emailing your request with your name and address to forms@welfare.ie.
  • Call into your local Intreo Centre or post office.
  • Phone Department of Employment Affairs and Social Protection on 1890 800 024 to request a form, due to the volume of calls there may be a significant wait time to talk to someone.

Post form to: Department of Employment Affairs and Social Protection, FREEPOST, PO Box 12896, Dublin 1.

Applying online

You can apply online for the COVID-19 Pandemic Unemployment Payment at www.mywelfare.ie. To apply online you will need:

  • A basic MyGovId account (all you need to get a MyGovId account is an e-mail address and password)
  • Your personal details
  • Your bank details.

COVID-19 Illness Benefit 

Farmers are eligible for income support under Illness Benefit if they are diagnosed with COVID-19 or are suspected of having COVID-19 and are medically required to self-isolate. This payment is also available to family members of those that are required to medically self-isolate.

To qualify for the payment, you must be:

  • self-isolating on the instruction of a doctor or diagnosed with COVID-19 (Coronavirus)
  • be absent from work and confined to your home or a medical facility

The personal payment rate is €350 per week for up to 2 weeks if you are medically required to self-isolate, and for a maximum of 10 weeks if a person has been diagnosed with COVID-19. If a person has been certified for less than 10 weeks, they will be paid for the duration of their certificate.

The changes mean that a farmer no longer has to wait 6 days to qualify for the payment, they are covered from the first week of a COVID-19 diagnosis (or medically-required self-isolation) and any subsequent weeks.

Step 1

Your doctor must complete a medical certificate on your behalf and send it directly to the Department.

Step 2

You need to complete an Illness Benefit (Form IB 1) application form. There are three ways that you can make an application:

  • Call 1890 800 024 or 01 2481398 between 9.00am and 5.00pm Monday to Friday to get an application form by post.
  • Organise for someone to pick up a form at your doctor’s surgery or at your local Intreo Centre.
  • Get the form posted to you by emailing your request with your name and address to forms@welfare.ie.

It is important to complete part 5 of the Illness Benefit form as this contains how you would like to be paid. You are not required to fill in part 7 of the form. Send your application form: Department of Employment Affairs and Social Protection, FREEPOST, PO Box 1650, Dublin 1.

When the medical certificate and the application form are received your payment will be processed.

There is no online application facility available currently.


IFA COVID-19 Contact Details

AreaContactDetails
Rural Development

Covid-19 farm inspections/ BPS applications, farmers’ rights / GLAS / TAMS / Farm Assist / RSS / CAP / agricultural education
Denis Griffindenisgriffin@ifa.ie

01 4260346
Farm Safety 

COVID-19: Plan B/ on-farmer guidelines
William Shortallwilliamshortall@ifa.ie

01 4260370
Beef and Sheep

COVID-19: prices / market issues / EU – national supports / meat processor issues / marts – farm-to-farm movements / farm schemes / BEEP / BDGP / sheep welfare / BEAM
Tomas Bourketomasbourke@ifa.ie

01 4260364
Dairy

COVID-19: processor issues / markets / prices
Aine O’Connellaineoconnell@ifa.ie

01 4260335
Banking and Taxation

COVID-19: banking / Revenue issuesRevenue
Donal Sheehandonalsheehan@ifa.ie

01 4260341
Environment

COVID-19: local authority issues / environmental regulations / nitrates / sustainability / Smart Farming / climate / input prices (fertiliser, feed, oil & diesel)regulations / nitrates / sustainability / Smart Farming / climate / input prices / (fertiliser, feed, oil and diesel)
Geraldine O’Sullivangeraldineosullivan@ifa.ie

01 4260381
Animal Health

COVID-19: TB testing / BVD / animal welfare / veterinary medicines / veterinary services
Tomas Bourketomasbourke@ifa.ie

01 4260364
Aquaculture

COVID-19: impact on marine sector
Teresa Morrisseyteresamorrissey@ifa.ie

01 4260338
Farm Family

COVID-19: Social Assistance payments / mental health / Fair Deal

Forestry 

Forestry licences / schemes / timber markets / prices
Geraldine O’Sullivangeraldineosullivan@ifa.ie

01 4260381
Grain, Potatoes and Horticulture 

Market prices
Pat Farrellpatfarrell@ifa.ie

01 4260389
Organics and Employment Law

COVID-19: employment law issues / work permits
Niamh Brennanniamhbrennan@ifa.ie

01 4260347
Oireachtas

COVID-19: Government restrictions / Brexit
Elaine Farrellelainefarrell@ifa.ie

01 4260339
Rural Crime

COVID-19: farm security advice
Barry Careybarrycarey@theftstop.ie

087 1006515
Pigs and Poultry

PPRS crisis / market prices / processor issues / avian influenza / labour issues
Robert Malonerobertmalone@ifa.ie

01 4260388
IFA President’s Office
IFA President, Tim Cullinan

Director General, Damian McDonald

Director of Organisation, James Kelly
Phone01 4260329
Association Secretary, Bryan Barry Phone01 4260334

Our Regional Offices can be contacted here.


Public Information Downloads

National Framework Risk Level 5