Pre-Retirement Allowance (PRETA)

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The Pre-Retirement Allowance (PRETA) is for people in Ireland aged 55 and over who have left the labour force. It is means-tested and you no longer have to sign-on as you do not need to be available for work.

Since 4 July 2007, no new applications for Pre-Retirement Allowance are accepted. However, if you were getting Pre-Retirement Allowance before 4 July 2007 you are not affected and can continue to get it.


In order to qualify, you must

(a) Be aged between 55 and 66

(b) Retire from the workforce

(c) Either

  • have been getting Jobseeker's Benefit or Jobseeker's Allowance for 15 months or,
  • no longer getting One-Parent Family Payment or Carer's Allowance or,
  • be a separated spouse who has not been working in the previous 15 months.

(e) Pass a means test

(The means test is similar to the means test for Jobseeker's Allowance).

Working while on Pre-Retirement Allowance

You cannot work and get PRETA.

However, there are exceptions, if you are getting PRETA for 12 months or longer you are eligible for either the Back to Work Allowance or Back to Work Enterprise Allowance scheme. Smallholders (farmers) may earn money from their holding and get PRETA, provided they pass the means test.

You do not have to sign on if you are getting PRETA.



PRETA maximum weekly rates for 2011
Personal rate €188
Qualified adult €124.80

Qualified child



How to apply

Since 4 July 2007, no new applications for Pre-Retirement Allowance are accepted. The Social Welfare Reform and Pensions Act 2006 abolishes the Pre-Retirement Allowance but existing recipients are not affected and may continue to get it.


Last modified:11/10/2010

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