Information about the Temporary Wage Subsidy Scheme (TWSS)

Overview

Note

The TWSS ended on 31 August 2020 and was replaced by the Employment Wage Subsidy Scheme. The information on this page is for reference purposes.

Revenue operated the TWSS from 26 March 2020 to 31 August 2020. The TWSS replaced the Employer COVID-19 Refund Scheme. It enabled employers that were affected by the pandemic to:

  • give significant supports directly to their employees 
  • keep their employees on the payroll throughout the pandemic. This meant employers could retain links with employees for when business picked up after the crisis.

Employers who were able to do so, could make an additional payment, with each wage subsidy, to employees.

Revenue reimbursed the employer for the wage subsidy they paid to employees after receipt of the payroll submission.

Compliance programme

Revenue is conducting compliance checks on all employers who avail of the TWSS. Revenue will contact all employers to confirm that:

  • they met the qualifying criteria
  • their employees received the correct amount of subsidy
  • they correctly recorded the subsidy amount in employee payslips.

Letters will issue to employers and their agents, where relevant, mainly through their ROS Inbox. The programme is expected to last for several months.

The compliance programme will also:

  • address any identified issues about the operation of Real Time PAYE by employers over 2019 and 2020
  • provide an opportunity for employers to address any other outstanding tax issues. This will be of importance to employers who may intend to avail of the debt warehousing as up-to-date compliance is a pre-requisite. 

Employers who stopped taking part in the TWSS

After taking part in the TWSS an employer might have reviewed their position and the economic impact of the pandemic. If after this review they considered that they did not meet the qualifying criteria they should have immediately ceased claiming the subsidy.

Employers who stopped participating in the TWSS are included in the:

Claw-back of subsidy

Revenue will require evidence of the assumptions supporting the original self-assessment of eligibility. If the basis of the assumption was

  • reasonable, Revenue will not seek to claw-back the subsidy refunded for the original period
  • not reasonable, the subsidy is repayable.

Next: Qualifying criteria for employers and employees