Social security

Living in Europe | Day care, schooling & family related issues | Finland

Finnish social security is divided into employment-based, earnings-related social security and residence-based social security. The social security system is administerd by Kela, the Social Insurance Institution of Finland.

Employees

You can be entitled to Kela benefits both on the basis of permanent residence in Finland and employment in Finland. Your social security coverage is mainly affected by the country you come from and for how long you plan to work in Finland. If you come to Finland as an employee, Kela determines whether your residence in Finland can be considered permanent also on the basis of your employment. An open-ended contract of employment or a fixed-term contract of employment of at least 2 years can be taken into account as an indication of a permanent move to Finland.

In case your eligibility for residence-based social security benefits will be created on the basis of employment, the eligibility will terminate when the employment ends.

You can become entitled to social security coverage in Finland on the

basis of employment even if you are not permanently resident here.

However, for instance general housing allowance is not payable to

employees coming from a country outside the EU area who are not

considered to be permanently resident in the country.

 

For more precise information, please see: Kela.fi: Social security coverage for employees and self-employed persons

Researchers working on a grant

Researchers working on a grant are usually not covered by the Finnish social security system since their stay in Finland is considered temporary. However, if the research work continues for more than a year, you have financing for more than a year and all other circumstances also indicate permanent residence in Finland, you may, as a rule, be covered by the Finnish social security system on the basis of permanent residence.

The definition of permanent residency in Finland, however, varies depending on your country of origin. If you are moving to Finland from outside the EU or Nordic countries, the qualification for permanent residency and municipality is 2 years of residency in Finland. If your research grant is for two years or more, you will normally be covered by the Finnish social security system and will qualify for Kela (The Social Insurance Institution of Finland) benefits as soon as you move to Finland.

Researchers from the EU/EEA countries who carryout research work or pursue postgraduate studies in Finland financed through a Finnish grant which entails the obligation to take out an insurance under the Farmers' Pensions Act (MELA) for at least four months, you are covered by the Finnish social security system for the duration of your research work or postgraduate studies. Coverage under the Finnish social security system has to be applied for with Kela.

For more precise information, please see: Kela.fi: Social security coverage for employees and self-employed persons

Family members

Information on family members' eligibility for social security benefits in Finland can be found at Kela.fi: Social security coverage for family members

Social security matters are quite complex and many different factors have affect the decision concerning social security benefits. Therefore, it is advisable to contact the local KELA office.

Further information: