Frequently asked questions about the activation model

What is the so-called activation model?

If you meet the criteria for activity, you can receive unemployment benefit at the full amount. The activity is monitored in periods of 65 days of payment. The criteria for activity are met if you, over the course of a single payment period, have been in salaried employment for at least 18 hours or have earned an income of at least EUR 241 from self-employment, or if you have participated in five days of employment-promoting services or some other employment-promoting activity arranged by the TE Services.

In the case of salaried employment, the working hours needed to meet the work requirement and thus the criteria for activity can be accrued for example during one week, four weeks or during the whole 65-day payment period.

If you do not meet the criteria for activity, the benefit amount of EUR 32.40 per day will be reduced by 4.65% for the next 65-day payment period. This corresponds to approximately one-day’s unemployment benefit during the period of payment, for example 4 weeks. The unemployment benefit is again paid at its former amount from the beginning of the following reference period, if the criteria for activity are met. The deduction is made from the full amount of the unemployment benefit, which also includes any child increase and supplementary amount granted, but not compensation that you may receive for expenses.

Even if you do not work during the next 65-day payment period, the benefit will not on the basis of the activation model be reduced by more than an amount corresponding to one day’s unemployment benefit.

If you are an informal caregiver or a family caregiver, if you have an application for disability pension pending, if you are receiving a benefit on the basis of incapacity for work or if you are temporarily laid off for a short period, you are not required to show activity in the manner referred to above. If any of these circumstances apply to you, you must report them on the employment status report. If you are receiving a benefit on the basis of incapacity for work or disability, Kela already has the relevant information and you do not need to report this.

Activity is monitored starting from 1 January 2018. The activation model was adopted as part of the amendments made to the Unemployment Security Act in December 2017.

Does the activation model apply to me?

The requirement for activity applies to all unemployed job seekers who are receiving unemployment benefits.

Informal caregivers and family caregivers as well as unemployed persons who receive a benefit on the basis of incapacity for work or disability are not included in the activation model. Activity is also not required when you have an application for disability pension pending or when you have been temporarily laid off for a short period. In these situations, your unemployment benefit is not reduced.

If you are an informal caregiver or a family caregiver, if you have an application for disability pension pending or if you are temporarily laid off for a short period, you must report this to Kela on your employment status report. If you are receiving a benefit on the basis of incapacity for work or disability, Kela already has the relevant information and you do not need to report this separately.

What should I do to prevent my unemployment benefit from being reduced?

The criteria for activity are met if you, in a payment period of 65 days, have been in salaried employment for at least 18 hours, have earned an income of at least EUR 241 from self-employment or you have participated in 5 days of employment-promoting services or some other employment-promoting activity.

Report that you have had salaried employment or engaged in self-employment on your employment status report. Kela checks whether the criteria for activity are met and pays the benefit accordingly. The easiest way to fill in your employment status report is to do it through Kela’s online customer service.

How do I report that I am working or participating in employment-promoting services?

Report that you are working on your employment status report. Kela checks whether the criteria for activity are met and pays the benefit accordingly. The easiest way to fill in your employment status report is to do it through Kela’s online customer service.

Information on your participation in employment-promoting services is forwarded to Kela by the TE Office. But in order to receive a supplementary amount and compensation for expenses related to your days of participation you must, however, state your days of participation in the services on your employment status report.

If, in order to improve your recruitment prospects, you participate in other services or activities arranged by the employment authorities, you must state this in your employment status report, because Kela does not receive any information on these services from the TE Office.

If you are an informal caregiver or a family caregiver, if you have an application for disability pension pending or if you are temporarily laid off for a short period, you must report this to Kela on your employment status report. If you are receiving a benefit on the basis of incapacity for work or disability, Kela already has the relevant information and you do not need to report this separately.

Who monitors my activity?

Kela checks whether the criteria for activity are met and pays the benefit accordingly. Report that you are working on your employment status report. The easiest way to fill in your employment status report is to do it through Kela’s online customer service.

What will happen if I cannot meet the criteria for activity?

If you do not meet the criteria for activity, the benefit amount of EUR 32.40 is reduced by 4.65% for the next 65-day period of payment. This means that you will lose the equivalent of approximately one day’s unemployment benefit in a payment period of, for example, 4 weeks. The unemployment benefit is again paid at its former amount from the beginning of the following reference period if the criteria for activity are met.

You may also be entitled to other benefits from Kela, for example general housing allowance or basic social assistance.

For information on job opportunities and employment-promoting services, please contact the TE Services: www.te-palvelut.fi

I am a teacher. How can I meet the criteria for activity?

In fields with non-standard working time arrangements (teachers, persons working at home, professional athletes, artists or creative workers), the work requirement and thus the criteria for activity can be met by working less than 18 hours (teachers). Whether the work requirement and the criteria for activity are met can also be determined on the basis of income.

Example: A recipient of unemployment benefit is working as an hourly-paid teacher in a field where there are no full-time teachers. The work requirement is therefore a minimum of 8 hours per calendar week. The person in question works as a teacher 4 days, 2 hours at a time, during a 65-day benefit payment period, and this meets the criteria for activity.

Do I meet the criteria for activity if I engage in independent gainful activity? Must I have a Business ID?

Persons who are engaged in gainful activity without a contract of employment or civil service status are regarded as being self-employed. This applies also to those who hire out their services through an intermediate billing service company. Self-employed persons meet the criteria for activity if they earn at least 241.04 euros during the 65-day payment period. A Business ID is not required.

I participated in employment-promoting training. Does it meet the activity requirement?

You have shown sufficient activity if you participate for 5 days in employment-promoting services arranged by the TE Office or within the scope of a regional employment trial, other comparable activity or for instance activity to improve recruitment prospects arranged at a workplace. You must also be entitled to an unemployment benefit during the whole period. If you are absent from the employment-promoting service without permission, you are not considered to have met the activity requirement.

Employment-promoting services include job search coaching, career counselling, labour market training, self-motivated study financed through an unemployment benefit, training try-out, job try-out, self-motivated study by an immigrant and rehabilitative work activity. These services are defined in the legislation.

Other employment-promoting services or activities arranged by the employment authorities include for instance expert evaluations (not evaluation of work capacity), career counselling as well as job coaching and job search coaching.

Activities to improve recruitment prospects arranged at a workplace include for instance recruitment trial arranged in cooperation with the employer. The recruitment trial must last 5 days.

The TE Offices can buy courses also from other service providers.

However, the activity requirement is not met through for instance interviews arranged by the TE Services, participation in drawing up or review of an employment plan or other counselling. The activity requirement is also not met through participation in for instance projects financed by the European Social Fund, projects arranged by educational institutions, independent employment services and projects arranged by the municipalities, courses arranged by the labour market organisations, or training arranged by the employer on the basis of the competitiveness pact.

 

Last modified 05/02/2018
Updated 05/01/2018