Back to School Clothing & Footwear Allowance

3rd July, 2012

Minister Burton sent me this useful information :

I promised to keep you informed about the arrangements for the 2012 Back to School Clothing & Footwear Allowance (BSCFA) Scheme.  The BSCFA entitlements of some 115,350 families in respect of 205,125 children have now been established with reference to their primary scheme entitlement, with no application form required.  Letters issued to the people concerned informing them of their entitlement and notifying them that payment will issue in week commencing 16 July.  These customers will be able to collect their BSCFA payment on the same day as their normal weekly payment.

 Customers who did not receive an automated payment are now required to complete an application form which will be processed from a centralised unit in the Department’s office in Letterkenny. The allowance is means tested so customers who are in receipt of benefit payments, on Community Employment or Back to Work schemes will be required to complete an application form. Some 16,000 additional applications have now been received for processing and an acknowledgement was issued by text to the 85% who requested one.  It is expected that the number of claims arriving daily will increase during July.  Claims which were received on Friday 22 June are being processed at present.

 Forms are available from Local Offices, via SMS (text “Form BTSCFA” followed by your name and address to 51909) and on www.welfare.ie.  A phone bank is operational to deal with queries on the scheme. The LOCALL number is 1890662244.

 I will continue to provide you with regular updates in relation to claim processing in order that you can provide an update to your constituents, but it would speed the process if you would refrain from making enquiries on individual cases.  Information in relation to the scheme is also regularly updated on the Departments website.