When you find work

When you find part-time or incidental work, your unemployment benefit is adjusted to your earnings, and you will receive an adjusted unemployment benefit. Your other income also affects the amount of the unemployment benefit.

Adjusted unemployment benefit is payable if

  • you earn income from a temporary full-time job that lasts for a maximum of 2 weeks
  • you earn income from a part-time job, and your working hours based on which you are paid are no more than 80 percent of the full-time hours applicable in that sector
  • you continue working but your daily working hours are shortened due to temporary lay-off
  • you have income from self-employment as a secondary business
  • your full-time self-employment activity lasts for a maximum of two weeks
  • you start a business while unemployed. In that case you will be paid an adjusted unemployment benefit for the first four months of running the business.

Report employment

Report the number of hours and the number of days that you have worked to Kela in your unemployment status report. As of 1 January 2019, Kela obtains salary information from the national incomes register. Kela uses this data when processing claims and applications. You will be contacted if additional information is required.

Income from self-employment must always be reported to Kela

Benefits are adjusted to salaries

The rules concerning the payment of adjusted unemployment benefits have changed. Under the revised rules, the salary for work that was undertaken before 1 April 2019 will still be adjusted in accordance with the period that it was earned. In the case of work that is undertaken on and after 1 April 2019, an unemployment benefit is adjusted to the salary in the same benefit payment period in which the salary is paid.

For example, if someone works part time in May and is paid in mid-June, their unemployment benefit is adjusted to their salary they are paid for the month of June. This way benefit payments are no longer delayed by salaries that are paid in arrears.


The benefit is paid every four weeks. This is called the adjustment period. The unemployment benefit can also be paid per calendar month if you have a part-time job where the wage is paid once a month.

Exempt amount of earnings

When calculating the unemployment benefit, all earnings that exceed the exempt amount of EUR 300 are included. You can earn up to this amount per month before taxes without suffering a reduction in your unemployment benefit. The exempt amount is EUR 300 or EUR 279, respectively, depending on whether the adjustment period is one month or 4 weeks.

The basic rule is that each euro of earned income above the exempt amount decreases the unemployment benefit by 50 cents. Included in earned income are such payments as wages and other monetary compensations, taxable reimbursements of expenses, fringe benefits, etc.

Starting a business while unemployed

If you start a business while unemployed, you can still continue to receive unemployment benefit payments for another 4 months.

The unemployment benefit is affected by the income from self-employment, which means that the income from self-employment reduces the unemployment benefit. Report the income from self-employment in the unemployment status report.

Furloughed/laid off temporarily

If you are furloughed/laid off for one or more full days per week, the unemployment benefit is not adjusted. Instead the full unemployment benefit is paid for the time of furlough/lay-off.

Wage-subsidised work

If you have a wage-subsidised part-time job, you may be entitled to adjusted unemployment benefit.

Advance payment

Advance payment is possible if the payment of an unemployment benefit is delayed unreasonably because of a salary which is paid in arrears. Unreasonable delay means about two weeks. Advance payment is not available if the unemployment benefit can be paid to you at regular intervals.
For the advance payment you must submit the following information to Kela:

  • length of the employment
  • daily working hours
  • gross wage
  • employer's contact details

You can use form TT10 Palkkatodistus (pdf). The employer can use the form to report your wage for the payment of the adjusted unemployment benefit.