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Earnings-related allowance

Conditions for claiming allowance

You can claim earnings-related allowance from an unemployment fund if:
you are unemployed in part or in full or laid off;

you seek full-time employment and have registered as an unemployed job seeker with the Employment and Economic Development Office;

you are a member of an unemployment fund;

you have met the employment condition during your period of membership; and

you are aged between 17 and 64 (or if you have been temporarily laid off, between 17 and 67).

Registering with the employment and economic development office

In order to claim earnings-related allowance, you must register as a job seeker with a TE Office as soon as you become unemployed. It is not possible to register retroactively.

The TE Office provides the unemployment fund with a binding opinion on whether you meet the labour market policy criteria for claiming earnings-related allowance, as laid down in legislation. Such criteria include, for example, your availability for work. The unemployment fund can pay earnings-related allowance only if the TE Office considers you eligible. For example, if you are a full-time student or a self-employed person, you are not entitled to claim earnings-related allowance. For more information about the labour market policy criteria and registration as a job seeker, contact any TE Office.

After you have registered, it is important to follow the instructions and deadlines issued by the TE Office in order to maintain your active job seeking.
For further information on registering as an unemployed job seeker, visit the employment administration website. You can register as an unemployed job seeker online.

Basic unemployment allowance and labour market subsidy

If you cannot claim earnings-related allowance because you do not meet the conditions regarding fund membership or previous employment, you can claim basic unemployment allowance or the labour market subsidy from Kela.

Conditions regarding membership and employment

If you are an employee, you must have been employed for 26 calendar weeks to meet the condition regarding previous employment. That means that you must have been employed for about six months in order to meet the condition regarding previous employment. Each week you have worked for at least 18 hours and have been paid in accordance with your sector’s collective agreement meets the condition regarding previous employment. If your sector does not have a collective agreement, your pay for full-time work must have been at least 1189 euros per month (2018).

Your employment need not be continuous, but the condition regarding previous employment must be met during the review period, which covers 28 months immediately before your registration as an unemployed job seeker.

You can only claim earnings-related allowance if you meet the condition regarding previous employment while you are a member of an unemployment fund, meaning that you must have been a member for a minimum of 26 weeks to qualify for the allowance.

If you are 60 years old and take part in an employment promotion measure on the basis of employment obligation, the employment promotion measure can be included in the condition regarding previous employment. For more information on the employment obligation, contact any TE Office. You can also call the national helpline.