What is the Back to School Clothing and Footwear Allowance (BSCFA)?

What is the Back to School Clothing and Footwear Allowance (BSCFA)?

The Back to School Clothing and Footwear Allowance (BSCFA) is a payment which helps with the cost of uniforms and footwear for school going children.

Applications for the scheme opens in June 2023 and the closing date for applications is end September 2023.

This allowance is automatically paid to many families. In this instance you don’t need to apply for it. The Department of Social Protection will let you know if you will be receiving the payment via your MyWelfare Account, or alternatively by post by end June 2023.

How do I know If I qualify for the BSCFA?

If you have a child that qualifies and you are

  • Receiving a qualifying social welfare payment or participating in an approved training support scheme.
  • Your household is within the Back to School Clothing and Footwear Allowance  income limit. Details of limits are set out below.
  • You and each child you are putting in a claim for is resident in Ireland.

If you are in receipt of a social welfare payment, you must be getting an Increase for a qualified child with your payment. There are however some exceptions to this, for example:

  • You are in receipt of a qualifying social welfare payment, but you are not getting an increase for your child because the rules of your payment do not provide for a child payment. Maternity Benefit and Adoptive Benefit would be examples of this. However you can still receive payment under the BSCFA if you meet the other BSCFA rules.
  • You are in receipt of a qualifying social welfare payment, but you do not get an increase for your child because your spouse or partner’s income is over the threshold for your payment. You can still claim however if your overall household income is within the BSCFA income limits. See limits below.

How does my child qualify?

To qualify for this allowance your child must be

  • Aged between 4-17 on 30 September -in the year that you are applying for BSCFA
  • Aged between 18-22 and returning to full-time second level education (in a recognised school or college) in the autumn of the year you are applying for BSCFA

Your child must be a resident in the State in order to qualify.

Income limits

Your overall household income must be less than the amounts set out in the ‘Weekly income limits’ table below. All your dependent children are counted when the income limit is being applied (this includes children who do not qualify for BSCFA because they are aged under 4).

Your total household income includes your main social welfare or HSE payment and any other income you may have including pre tax wages. However, it excludes PRSI and a standard travel allowance of up to €20 per week), maintenance, savings and investments.

Savings and investments (including property, but not your home) are assessed as follows:

How Savings And Investments Are Assessed
CapitalWeekly means assessed
First €5,000not taken into account
Next €10,000€1 per €1,000
Next €25,000€2 per €1,000
Balance€4 per €1,000

Any income you receive from Child Benefit, Rent Supplement or another SWA income supplementWorking Family Payment, guardian payments, Blind Welfare AllowanceRehabilitation Training Allowance, rehabilitative employment (up to €165 per week), Domiciliary Care Allowance , Mobility Allowance and the Housing Assistance Payment (HAP) is not taken into account.

Weekly income limits for 2023
Number of childrenIncome limit
1 child€642
2 children€692
3 children€742
4 children€792*


*This income limit is increased by €50 for each additional dependent child.

What Is The Rate For Back To School Clothing And Footwear Allowance?

In 2023, the amount for each eligible child aged between 4-11 on 30 September 2023 is €260.

In 2023, the amount for each eligible child aged 12-22 on 30 September is €385. Children aged between 18 and 22 years must be returning to full-time second-level education in a recognised school or college in the Autumn of 2023.

How Can I Apply For The Back To School Clothing And Footwear Allowance

This scheme will open in June 2023. The closing date for applications will be 30 September 2023.

You cannot apply for the BSCFA until the scheme opens in June.

Apply here

https://www.gov.ie/en/service/41eb8b-back-to-school-clothing-and-footwear-allowance/

Email  BSCFA@welfare.ie

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