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Support during illness

If you fall ill or have an accident, you have the right to stay home from work. If you are covered by Finnish national health insurance (sairausvakuutus), you have the right to apply for sickness allowance (sairauspäiväraha) from the Social Insurance Institution of Finland (Kela) after the qualifying period for benefit (omavastuuaika). The qualifying period for benefit usually starts on the day when you fall ill, and continues for the following 9 weekdays. If you have been employed at your current job for more than a month before you fell ill, your employer will pay you full salary for the qualifying period for benefit. Sickness allowance is paid for a maximum of 300 weekdays. You must apply for it within 2 months of falling ill.

You can apply for sickness allowance if:

  • you are covered by Finnish national health insurance (sairausvakuutus); read more on the Infopankki web page Finnish social security
  • you are between 16–67 years old
  • you are unable to work due to an illness
  • you have worked for 3 months before falling ill as an employee, entrepreneur or self-employed person or before falling ill, you have studied full-time, been an unemployed job seeker, i.e. a customer of the Employment and Economic Development Office (työ- ja elinkeinotoimisto), or taken sabbatical leave (sapattivapaa) or job alternation leave (vuorotteluvapaa) for 3 months

If you do not meet the three month condition, you cannot receive sickness allowance until you have been unable to work due to your illness for 55 days non-stop.

If you are being paid during the time of your illness, your employer will apply for the sickness allowance. In this case, the sickness allowance will be paid to your employer. If you are ill for a long time and your employer no longer pays you for the time that you are ill, you can apply for sickness allowance from Kela after your salary payments have ceased.

The amount of sickness allowance paid depends on your income. It is usually calculated from your taxation on the basis of your confirmed earned income. Copyright reimbursements and employment options, for example, are not counted when calculating the amount of sickness allowance.

If your income has grown, you can apply for sickness allowance on the basis of the earned income of the last 6 months. In this case you will need to append to your application a notification of the salary you have received. You can ask your employer to provide you with this notification.

When you apply for sickness allowance, please attach the following:

  • a doctor’s certificate of your incapacity for work
  • salary certificate for the last 6 months if your income has grown

You can find out more about sickness allowance on Kela’s website.

If your illness continues over a long period, find out whether rehabilitation might help you. You can find information about rehabilitation on the Infopankki web page Rehabilitation.

linkkiThe Social Insurance Institution of Finland, Kela:
Sickness allowanceFinnish | Swedish | English

linkkiThe Social Insurance Institution of Finland, Kela:
Applying for sickness allowanceFinnish | Swedish | English

linkkiKela :
Health and rehabilitationFinnish | Swedish | Russian | Estonian

Partial sickness allowance

Partial sickness allowance (osasairauspäiväraha) is intended for a 16–67 year-old employee or entrepreneur who works full-time and is covered by Finnish social security. The purpose of partial sickness allowance is that you can continue to work or return to work even though you have fallen ill. Discuss the possibility of applying for partial sickness allowance first with your occupational doctor and employer. Your occupational doctor will evaluate whether or not you will be able to work part-time during your illness.

When you are applying for partial sickness allowance, append to your application:

  • a doctor’s certificate of your incapacity for work
  • sickness allowance application
  • a copy of an agreement you have made with your employer, specifying that you will work part-time for a fixed term. The agreement must specify your working hours and salary.
  • a salary certificate for 6 months before falling ill, if your income has grown

Partial sickness allowance must be applied for within 2 months of starting part-time work.

You can find out more about partial sickness allowance on Kela’s website.

linkkiThe Social Insurance Institution of Finland, Kela:
Partial sickness allowanceFinnish | Swedish | English

linkkiThe Social Insurance Institution of Finland, Kela:
Applying for partial sickness allowanceFinnish | Swedish | English