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Eurofound's EU PolicyWatch collates information on the responses of government and social partners to the COVID-19 crisis, the war in Ukraine, rising inflation, as well as gathering examples of company practices aimed at mitigating the social and economic impacts.

Factsheet for measure IE-2020-42/1427 Updated – measures in Ireland

New scheme for business severely impacted by COVID-19 Level 5 restrictions

Country Ireland , applies nationwide
Time period Temporary, 13 October 2020 – 31 December 2021
Context COVID-19
Type Other initiatives or policies
Category Supporting businesses to stay afloat
– Direct subsidies (full or partial) or damage compensation
Author Roisin Farelly (IRN Publishing) and Eurofound
Measure added 12 November 2020 (updated 03 February 2022)

Background information

The COVID Restrictions Support Scheme (CRSS) was introduced on 6 November 2020 to support businesses significantly impacted by COVID-19 restrictions. The scheme was introduced under the Finance Bill 2020 and will operate from 13 October 2020 to 31 March 2021. The scheme was introduced at a time when the country moved to Level 5 – the most restrictive level - of the Government’s Plan for Living with COVID-19. The scheme will generally operate when Level 3 or higher is in place and will cease when restrictions are lifted.

Content of measure

The COVID Restrictions Support Scheme (CRSS) is a targeted support for businesses significantly impacted by restrictions introduced by the government under public health regulations to combat the effects of the COVID-19 pandemic. It is for businesses forced to close or trade at significantly reduced levels as a result of restrictions imposed on them in response to COVID-19. A weekly payment of up to €5,000 is available to eligible businesses.

To qualify under the scheme, a business must be able to demonstrate that, because of the COVID-19 restrictions, the turnover of the business in the period for which the restrictions are in operation, and for which a claim is made, will be no more than 25% of an amount equal to the average weekly turnover of the business in 2019 (or average weekly turnover in 2020 in the case of a new business) multiplied by the number of weeks in the period for which a claim is made. Qualifying businesses can apply to the Revenue Commissioners for the payment.


The following updates to this measure have been made after it came into effect.

20 December 2021

Following the introduction of certain restrictions on 20 December 2021, including the closure of indoor venues at 8 p.m., the CRSS was changed to allow impacted companies to qualify.

Businesses in the hospitality sector as well as indoor venues such as cinemas and were allowed to qualify on the basis of being “significantly restricted from operating”. Previously a business was required to close or significantly restrict access by customers to its premises to qualify for the scheme.

Businesses are eligible to claim payment under the scheme if:

*The weekly turnover is 40% or less than the average weekly turnover in a reference period (generally in 2019). * It has tax clearance for the claim period and intends to resume trading after the restrictions are lifted.

01 June 2021

Under the Economic Recovery Plan the CRSS was extended until the end of 2021.

As firms re-open and exit the scheme, there will be an enhanced restart payment of three weeks at double rate of payment to support businesses in meeting the costs of re-opening as they exit the scheme.

The maximum restart payment will be increased to €10,000 per week with a maximum of €30,000.

Use of measure

In November, the Revenue said that over 3,853 businesses had already signed up for CRSS.

Figures published by Revenue in January 2021, show that €146m in supports was given to 16,600 businesses under the scheme in 2020.

Figures published by Revenue in February 2021, show that, as at 18 February 2021: 20,200 businesses have registered 23,300 premises for CRSS. 81,100 claims for CRSS payments of €307.9 million in respect of 21,800 premises have been made.

Target groups

Workers Businesses Citizens
Does not apply to workers Applies to all businesses Does not apply to citizens

Actors and funding

Actors Funding
National government
Local funds

Social partners

Social partners' role in designing the measure and form of involvement:

Trade unions Employers' organisations
Role No involvement No involvement
Form Not applicable Not applicable

Social partners' role in the implementation, monitoring and assessment phase:

  • No involvement
  • Main level of involvement: N/A


No involvement.

Views and reactions

Employer group Ibec has said the COVID Restrictions Support Scheme is an important first step in getting the experience economy back on its own feet and will undoubtedly provide a lifeline to many businesses in the sector struggling to stay afloat.


  • 03 November 2020: Revenue urges businesses to register for CRSS (
  • 06 November 2020: Government launches the Covid Restrictions Support Scheme (CRSS) to support businesses significantly impacted by COVID-19 restrictions (
  • 06 November 2020: Over 3,853 businesses already signed up for CRSS (
  • 12 November 2020: Covid Restrictions Support Scheme (CRSS) (
  • 06 January 2021: Adapting to COVID-19 in 2020 (
  • 18 February 2021: COVID-19 Support Schemes (
  • 01 June 2021: Economic Recovery Plan (
  • 21 December 2021: Revenue update on claiming support under CRSS and EWSS and availing of the Debt Warehousing Scheme (
  • 12 January 2022: Guidelines on the operation of the Covid Restrictions Support Scheme 12 January 2022 (


Eurofound (2020), New scheme for business severely impacted by COVID-19 Level 5 restrictions, measure IE-2020-42/1427 (measures in Ireland), EU PolicyWatch, Dublin,


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Disclaimer: This information has not been subject to the full Eurofound evaluation, editorial and publication process.