The Small Firms Association (SFA) proudly represent a diverse membership of businesses with less than 50 employees; spanning every sector of our economy. Our members are found in every town and every city in Ireland. Our mission is to deliver business focused advice and insights to member companies, influence government policy to the benefit of small business and connect our members in a thriving community.

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COVID-19 / Information, guidance and support

Latest information and business updates, guidance and support 


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Wage Subsidy Scheme / Questions & Answers

Yes, refunds of PAYE/USC arising from the application of rate bands and tax credits can be repaid by the employer and Revenue will also refund this amount to the employer. Employers are not required to give additional payments on top of the subsidy. As such, the employer has the discretion on how much to give as top up amount. Please note though that reducing the top up because of the potential refund effectively translates into an arbitrary pay cut only directed towards those specific employees with unused rate bands and credits.



Yes. While there is no reason that a business cannot do this, it may however raise questions as to whether the business was eligible for the scheme in the first instance.


In order to be eligible, the employees must be on the payroll as at 29 February and included in a payroll submission to Revenue between 1 February 2020 and 15 March 2020. Unfortunately therefore, they would not be considered eligible employees.


The amounts paid to employees and notified to Revenue will be transferred into the employer’s refund bank account by Revenue. This reimbursement will, in general, be made within two working days after receipt of the payroll submission.

In your case, the refund should be credited within 2 working days from the date of PSR submission. As payroll submissions can be made on or before pay date, you can manage the lead time by submitting the payroll reports 2 days before pay date. (Note: Submissions made more than 4 days in advance of the pay date will not be processed for refund until 4 days before the pay date.). Feedback to date indicates that the refunds are being made on schedule.


The scheme includes eligible employees on full time, part-time and short-time work arrangements or employees who are temporarily laid off (i.e., no work assigned at all). There are no requirements on the work, if any, the employer assigns to employees.


Explore / SME business support programme

MentorsWork is a structured 12-week business-support programme designed to provide business leaders with the skills and supports to help their business thrive, by addressing the specific needs of their business. MentorsWork is brought to you by SFA in partnership with Skillnet Ireland, Ibec, SBCI and Microfinance Ireland.

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Get in touch

Small Firms Association, led by Sven Spollen-Behrens, represents and supports a broad and diverse mix of members from Irish small and medium-sized enterprises (SME) sector. The team keeps members informed on policy through in-house briefings, provides industry updates, research and regularly runs member networking forums and industry led training for the sector. 

For any queries, please contact on 01 605 1500.

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