Application process for benefits

The benefits provided by Kela are generally available on application only. The only exceptions are the reimbursements of medical, pharmaceutical and travel expenses, which are available as direct, on-the-spot reimbursements.

Applications for benefit can increasingly be made online besides being submitted on a paper form. To log into Kela's online customer service system, you need your online banking ID or electronic ID card. Online applications are automatically forwarded to the unit responsible for processing them. The online customer service is so far available only in Finnish and Swedish.

Paper application forms are available from Kela's local offices, or they can be printed off Kela's website. Remember to sign your application. You can mail it to Kela.

Applications for student financial aid should be submitted to Kela or, if you attend a university, the financial aid committee of your university. Applications for school transportation subsidy should be submitted to your school.

If you apply for social assistance, the part of your application relating to basic social assistance is reviewed by Kela. If you also wish to apply for supplementary or preventive social assistance for expenses that the basic social assistance does not cover, you can say so in the application. At your request, Kela can forward your application to the municipal authorities for further review.

Whether you are completing the application online or on paper, be sure to fill in all information required in the application or the supporting documents. Upon receiving your application, Kela will check that it contains all of the information needed for a decision.

You may be asked to provide additional information

Before making a decision on your application, Kela will make sure that it has access to all relevant information. You may be asked to provide additional information to supplement your application. You will be told a date by which you must provide the information. If you miss the deadline, Kela may decide your case based on the information otherwise available to it. Kela may also take steps to acquire information which it has a legal right to access.

Last modified 23/12/2016
Updated 01/01/2017