Application processing times | Our Services | KelaSkip to content

When can I expect a decision on my application?

The law requires that applications for basic social assistance must be reviewed in seven working days. Kela has set certain target times for processing applications for other benefits. Kela also monitors the processing times that are actually reached.

Please note that some applications will always be processed more quickly than the average, while others will take longer.

Check the status of your application

Please note that our e-service is only available in Finnish and Swedish.

Go to OmaKela

Check the status of your application in the OmaKela e-service

The time it takes to process your application depends on such factors as how carefully you have completed the application and whether you have provided Kela with all necessary documentation and information.

You can use the OmaKela e-service to check if your application has arrived at Kela and if it has been decided yet. If the application has not been decided, you will see an estimate showing how long it will take to process it.

In OmaKela, you can also view notifications reminding you to supply additional information or documents that are missing from your application. Such notifications will remain active until the claims processor has resumed processing your application, so you should not worry if you continue to see the notification even though you have provided the missing information and documentation.

Applications may take longer to process for example if

  • they are missing relevant information or supporting documents
  • the applicant has not supplied the missing information or documents despite requests to do so
  • Kela is waiting to receive information from a third party, such as an employer
  • the applicant has lived abroad, and Kela is waiting to receive information from a social security institution in another country
  • applications are backlogged
  • the application was returned to Kela as part of the appeal process.

Please note that if you want to provide additional information to an application you have submitted to Kela, you can do so in the OmaKela e-service or by calling Kela’s customer service.

Sometimes, Kela receives so many applications that they cannot be processed within the target time.

That may be specific to a particular time of the year, such as early autumn when schools start, or the turn of the year, when there are often changes in the eligibility conditions and benefit amounts. Index adjustments to benefits and changes in taxation may also cause more work and customer enquiries at the turn of the year.

In some cases, Kela has to wait for a decision from another government agency before finalising its own decision. Public holidays and staff leaves and absences are further factors that lengthen application processing times.

When processing benefit applications which involve more than one country, Kela often has to contact social security institutions in other countries for further information. That slows down the processing of the application. You can speed up the processing by providing all of the information required in the application and by submitting the supporting documents as soon as possible.

For example, reimbursements for medical treatment given abroad may take several months to process. Applications for a pension also take a long time to process. Applications for a national pension cannot be decided until Kela has received information about all of the periods of insurance completed abroad, qualifying periods completed under the Finnish earnings-related pension scheme, and any decisions on pension applications issued by Finnish authorised pension providers or by foreign institutions.