Election 2016 – How Could it Affect your Finances ?

Election 2016 – we have put together a summary of the areas of the main party manifestos that could  have an effect on your income and outgoings if they are implemented.

Fine Gael

FG will  introduce a 5% tax on earnings over €100k (on the excess) .

FG will remove the  paye / earned income tax credit for earners over 100k (it will be reduced from €70k to €100k)

FG will increase the tax credit for self employed to match the PAYE level by

FG  will abolish  USC by 2021 and reduce the main 5.5% rate to 4.5% in 2017

FG  will cut the PRSI entry point to 13K

FG will raise the Capital Acquisitions Tax  threshold from 280k to 500k for group A  inheritances.

FG  will increase the Minimum wage  to €10.50 an hour during second term

FG  Will increase Jobseekers Benefit by €27 a week for the first 3 months and increase by €12 a week for next 3 months.

FG will restore dental treatment benefit

FG will introduce a new working family payment to ensure parents working over 15 hrs week get €11.75 per hour min.

FG will increase the carers allowance by € 4 a week each year to 2021

FG  will increase the Home carer tax credit to 1,650, while also increasing from €7,200 to €10,500 the income exemption

FG – State pension to be increased by at least €25 a week by 2021 – a €5  increase each year .

FG will raise the living alone allowance by €6 a week every year up to 2021

FG will keep water charges capped until 2021.  The charges and the cap may rise from 2018 but any rises to be in line with inflation.

FG will bring in free GP care for all under 18 by 2019
FG will introduce free dental care for under 6s
FG will reduce the drug payment scheme limit to €950 a year from €1728
FG  will cut the prescription charge cap from €25 to €17.50  a month

Fianna Fail

FF  will  abolish USC for earnings under €80,000 and charge 8% USC on income over that.  They will also remove paye / earned income tax credits for earners over 100k and reduce it for people  on 70k upwards.

FF will increase the self employed earned income tax credit from €550 to €1,650 .

FF will  reduce the rate of DIRT from 41% to 38%.
FF will retain the Mortgage Interest Relief scheme to 2020

FF   will introduce a new tax credit worth €2,000 for average income households to help them deal with childcare costs. Low income households will benefit by up to €5,000.

FF  Will introduce a new savings account for house purchases with a 25% top up. The Government will top up savings by 25% up to a maximum of €5,000. Savers can lodge €2,000 initially into their account and can exercise one additional €2,000 lodgement every year subject to the €5,000 top up cap.  Monthly savings are capped at €400,   Accounts can be opened for 5 years and must be opened for a minimum of 12 months. In order to draw down the top up a home must be purchased within 18 months of the cap being reached.

FF  will increase maternity benefit from 26 weeks to 30 weeks

FF  will double the Home Carer Tax Credit from €1,000 to €2,000

FF  will increase all working age welfare benefits by  €10 a week

FF  will increase the state pension by €30 a week from €233 to €263 (No timescale given)

FF  will increase Child Benefit by €10 per month

FF will increase the One Parent Family Payment scheme maximum child age threshold from seven years to twelve

FF   will abolish water charges and Irish Water

FF  Will introduce a tax on sugar in sweetened drinks. It would add an average six cent to a can .

FF   will abolish prescription charges on a phased basis and  reduce the Drug Payment scheme threshold by €44 from €144 to €100 a month



Sinn Fein

SF will abolish the Local Property Tax and Water Charges.

SF  will remove workers earning under €19,572 from the USC net.

SF will “move towards” the equalisation of the Self-Employed Tax Credit with the PAYE Tax Credit.

SF  will increase the National Minimum Wage to €9.65 an hour

SF will increase the rates of Capital Acquisition Tax and Capital Gains Tax for passive investments that don’t help the real economy and will examine the introduction of a Wealth Tax. (No figures given)

SF will charge an extra income tax of  7  per cent  on every euro earned on income over €100,000. This new band would be applied on an individual basis and not on the joint income of a couple.

SF will roll out free GP care at a rate of almost a quarter of a million more people each year and make prescription drugs free for everyone.

SF will abolish the €100 charge for the use of Emergency Departments and the €75 per day charge for inpatient care.

SF  will award an automatic medical card to every child with a serious illness or disability and   introduce a new secure medical card for adults with disabilities, based on medical need.

SF  will review all property-related tax reliefs that encourage speculation for profit.

SF will empower the Central Bank to set caps on mortgage interest rates chargeable by banks.

SF will extend maternity benefit by 6 weeks in year one, bringing it to 52 weeks over the lifetime of government, and increase the rate of maternity benefit to €260 per week.

SF will cap maximum fees for childcare costs at €180 per week in year one and move to €150 per week (€3.75 per hour) over the term of government.

SF  will reduce TDs’ salaries to €75,000 and Senators’ salaries to €60,000.
They will reduce the salary top-ups of An Taoiseach and Ministers by 50%.
and will reduce  pension payments to former Taoisigh, Ministers and top civil servants.
SF will cap the pay of special advisors to the Taoiseach and Ministers at €75,000.

Welfare :  SF will reinstate the full rate of Jobseekers’ Allowance for under 26s;  Increase Disability Allowance by €20; increase Fuel Allowance, Family Income Supplement and the Back to School Allowance; raise the cut-off age of the One- Parent Family Payment to 12 years old; restore the Bereavement Grant; and introduce a Telephone Allowance.

SF will  drop the contributions requirement for state pension eligibility from 520 to 260 contributions.

SF  will increase funding to the school meals programme by 40% and the School Books Grant by 30%.

SF will  increase the Back to School Clothing and Footwear Allowance by €50.

SF  will increase the Back to Education Allowance for under 26s to €188.
SF  will  abolish third level student fees over a term of government by incrementally reducing the student contribution while replacing the revenue lost to the third level institutions through the central exchequer.

SF  will introduce maintenance grants for postgraduate students and reverse the changes to the adjacent rate of grant.


Labour will abolish USC on earnings under €72,000 – but will alter tax credits to ensure that people   earning  €100,000- €120,000 will  receive some benefit, but those earning  over €120,000 will not see an increase in take-home pay.

Labour will abolish the USC surcharge of 3% on income over
€100,000 for the self-employed.

Labour will increase the self employed tax credit  from €550 to  €1,100
in 2017 and  to € 1,650 in 2018 .

Labour will increase the minimum wage 11.30 per hour

Labour will increase the state pension by €5 a week each year ,  bringing it to € 260 a week by  2021

Labour will cut the third level student  contribution by  € 500

Labour will increase funding to schools by €60 per child, in return for an end to voluntary contributions and other charges on parents

Labour will abolish all school transport charges by 2018.

Labour  will move immediately to cap the cost of childcare for all children
under 12 to €4.25 per hour for up to 40 hours of childcare a week. By
2021, they will reduce this cost to €2 per hour, or a maximum cost of
€80  per week. The State will fund the balance.

Labour will launch a new National Community Health Service providing
free GP care for all by 2021

Labour will reduce the maximum payment under the Drug payment scheme  to €100 for families and €75  for single people.

Labour will reduce the prescription charges capto €20 a month and cut the item charge to €1.50.

Labour will restore dental treatment benefit

Labour will increase child benefit to €155 a month by 2021

Labour will increase duty on tocbacco to bring in an extra €260 million a year by 2021

Labour will add a tax to sweetened drinks  – an average of 15c to a can.