The Back to Work Enterprise Allowance
The Back to Work Enterprise Allowance (BTWEA) scheme encourages people getting certain social welfare payments to become self-employed. People taking part in the Back to Work Enterprise Allowance scheme (pdf) can keep a percentage of their social welfare payment for up to 2 years.
From 1 May 2009, the qualifying period required for BTWEA is reduced from 2 years to 12 months provided you have an underlying entitlement to Jobseekers Allowance.
A new Back to Work Scheme called the Short-Term Enterprise Allowance started May 2009. There is no qualifying period for the Short-Term Enterprise Allowance. You can get immediate access to the allowance but you must meet the qualifying conditions.
Help starting a business
The Technical Assistance and Training (TAT) fund is designed to help people getting the Back to Work Enterprise Allowance with certain costs involved starting a business. You do not have an automatic entitlement to TAT; assistance from this fund must be approved by the Jobs Facilitator in your Social Welfare Local Office. Payments from the fund must be made directly to the provider of the service.