If you do not avail of the new PRSI treatment benefit scheme in 2017, you have lost out?
There has been a significant change to the rules of entitlement to the PRSI scheme – it has been changed from “once every 24 months” to “every second calendar year”. This made no difference in my mind, at all – but Sandra pointed out that if you were to claim in 2017, you would be re-entitled in 2019. If you do not use your entitlement until 2018, you will then need to wait until 2020. Sandra is quite correct that if you need something – glasses or contact lenses, you should arrange to get them before the end of the year, otherwise your 2017 entitlement is gone! It is all about this new rule arriving so late in a calendar year.
Remember that most self employed people are now also entitled to eye tests and help towards glasses or contact lenses, for the first time.
The difference between 24 months and every second calendar year will make little difference in the longer term, but in the short term, you could use your entitlement in December 2017 and January 2019 – that is a claim in the second calendar year. Wait till January (18), and you will need to wait until January 2020.
You can use your entitlement once every second calendar year, but not necessarily at the same time – you can use the glasses/contacts claim in 2017, and still have an eye test in 2018, if you wish, or need one, but you would have no help towards spectacles, or contact lenses at that visit, which is fair I reckon?
This post would probably be of most interest to people who have recently damaged their glasses, or need to reorder their contact lenses for the Holiday Season.
But! We need to know that you want to use it in 2017 – if you call in 2018 to say you should have/ wished you had used it – it will be too late – claims cannot be submitted before the authorisation date! If you do not use the facility in 2017, your next but one claim will be 2020 at the earliest..
Clients who have a Medical Card, but also PRSI entitlement – “Dual Qualification”, can chose to use either entitlement – we would recommend the PRSI route as it is faster – no need to wait 8 weeks for a HSE authorisation. But you are not entitled to use BOTH, apparently – I have asked the Department about the client who used their Medical Card last year, and now wants to use their PRSI, but as yet I have had no response. We are not, never were allowed to “dual claim”, so it is “either or” as we understand, unless or unless that is clarified.