The cost and quality of childcare has become a major political issue. Photograph: Bryan O’Brien

Up to 25,000 additional low-income families may benefit from access to affordable childcare under plans being considered ahead of next week’s budget(...)

New facial recognition software has helped authorities detect dozens of attempts by fraudsters to claim welfare benefits using multiple identities over recent months. File photograph: Kacper Pempel/Reuters

New facial recognition software has helped authorities detect dozens of attempts by fraudsters to claim welfare benefits using multiple identities ove(...)

A spokesman for JJ Rhatigan said the firm disagreed with the finding and planned to appeal the decision on the workers’ status. Photograph: Getty Images

A State authority has determined that a number of construction workers on a Government-funded school building project were employees and not self-empl(...)

  A spokesman for Tánaiste and Minister for Social Protection Joan Burton said the free travel scheme would remain intact. Photograph: Gareth Chaney Collins

State transport providers have privately sought the introduction of rush-hour travel restrictions for holders of free travel passes as part of a revie(...)

Former PD minister Liz O’Donnell: involved in lobbying in recent years. Photograph: Dara Mac Dónaill

Lobbyists attempting to influence policies will need to record details of their contacts with public officials for a publicly accessible register fr(...)

The placement of children in withdrawal rooms is regarded by most special schools as a measure of last resort to protect the safety of pupils and staff. Photograph: The Irish Times

Special needs campaigners have called for the introduction of official rules governing the use of “seclusion rooms” in schools to manage the behaviour(...)

Dylan Kennedy (10) with his mother Debbie Kennedy at home in Dublin. Photograph: The Irish Times

Debbie Kennedy accepts her 10-year-old son can be difficult to handle on occasion. He’s autistic and has been diagnosed with attention deficit hyperac(...)

State officials have been using bank data to match people who are paying out significant sums in Dirt tax on their savings, while also claiming means-tested benefits. File photograph: Aidan Crawley

Hundreds of welfare recipients have been forced to repay millions of euro in means-tested benefits after it emerged they had large sums of undeclared(...)

Latest figures show that wider investigations into white-collar professions – such as doctors, dentists, accountants and lawyers – have yielded tens of millions of euro in tax and penalties for the exchequer. Photograph: Getty Images

The Revenue Commissioners has collected more than €30 million in unpaid tax and penalties as part of an ongoing inquiry into the financial affairs of (...)

Revenue is clamping down on undisclosed income from rental properties. Image: Getty

Tax officials are targeting millions of euro in rental income as part of a crackdown on the “shadow economy”. Audits and investigations into the rent(...)