Child maintenance allowance

In a separation or divorce, Kela can pay child maintenance allowance if the parent liable for maintenance does not pay it or if the amount of child support is lower than the amount of child maintenance allowance. Child maintenance allowance is also payable when there is no parent with maintenance liabilities. This is the case if, for example, if you have adopted a child as a single parent or if the child was born out of wedlock and the paternity has not been confirmed.

In a separation or divorce, eligibility for child maintenance allowance requires that the parents have signed a child support agreement or that they have a court decision regarding child support.

Child maintenance allowance is paid to a parent or to another person in whose care the child is. The allowance can also be granted and paid to the child itself, if he/she has reached the age of 15.

You can get child maintenance allowance from Kela if

  • the parent liable for child support has not paid the confirmed child support*
  • the amount of confirmed child support is lower than the child maintenance allowance due to the financial situation of the parent liable for maintenance
  • no child support has been confirmed to be paid due to the financial situation of the parent liable for maintenance
  • you have adopted the child as a single parent
  • the paternity of a child born out of wedlock has not been confirmed
  • paternity has been confirmed, but it was not possible to confirm child support at the same time.

* If a parent liable for maintenance has not paid child support, Kela will recover it from the parent in arrears.

You cannot get child maintenance allowance from Kela if

  • you do not have a child support agreement confirmed by the municipal social welfare office or a court decision. An agreement or a court decision is not needed if the child was born out of wedlock and the paternity has not been confirmed, or if you have adopted the child as a single parent
  • the child is living with the parent liable for maintenance
  • the child has an income of his/her own enabling the child to support him/herself, that is, the child has an earned income of at least €768.00 per month during a period of 6 months or, if the child lives on his/her own, an income of at least €1,097.14 per month
  • the person liable for maintenance has died.

Child support for conscripts' children

If a conscript is unable to pay child support while performing military service, Kela will pay an amount equalling the child support amount to the parent in whose care the child is in the form of conscript's allowance.

Conscript's allowance can be claimed by the child's legal guardian. The conscript himself may also claim the amount of child support paid as conscript's allowance if he is the child's legal guardian. If the child is not already receiving child support, a copy of the child support agreement or the court decision must be enclosed with the claim. If the conscript has an earned income during the period of service, an account of the earnings must also be enclosed with the claim. More information on conscript's allowance.

Last modified 29/12/2016
Updated 01/01/2017