How to appeal against a decision

If you think that the decision you received from Kela on your application is wrong, you can appeal to have it changed.


If you want to appeal against a decision concerning social assistance, follow these instructions.

What we ask you to do

  1. The appeal can be made by letter. If you wish, you can use the form for appeals when writing your appeal.
  2. If you do not wish to use the form, be sure to tell the following
    • your name, personal identity code, telephone number and address for sending mail and decisions about the rectification request
    • the decision you are appealing
    • how you want the decision to be changed
    • why you want the decision to be changed.
  3. You can also appeal online (available in Finnish and Swedish only). To log in to Kela's online customer service, use your online banking codes or a mobile certificate.
  4. If you are appealing on behalf of another person, you need a power of attorney. Read more about acting on behalf of another person.
  5. If you are appealing a decision made before 1 January, 2020, remember to sign the appeal.

Where should the appeal be handed in?

Depending on the subject of the appeal, an appeal filed online is directed either to Kela or the workplace sickness fund. If you appeal by letter and the decision was issued by Kela, the appeal should be sent to Kela . If the decision was issued by some other organization (for example a workplace sickness fund), you should appeal to the issuer of the decision.

You have 37 days from the date of mailing of the decision to turn in your appeal. The date of mailing is shown on the decision. Kela presumes that you have been notified of the decision on the seventh day after the mailing date on the decision.

If you receive a decision that contains an error

The decision will be re-examined by Kela and, if found to be wrong, amended. The amended decision will be mailed to you.

Kela is authorised to correct typographical or calculation errors without your consent, but Kela will contact you before any correction is made. The error can be corrected either in your favour or to your disadvantage. Factual errors in the decision may be corrected to your disadvantage only with your consent. If you do not give your consent, Kela may ask the relevant Appeal Board to nullify the decision.

Appealing to the Appeal Board

If Kela considers that it cannot amend the decision in the way you want, it will forward your appeal to the relevant Appeal Board. You have a further right of appeal to the Insurance Court, which is the highest court of appeal. Both will issue you with a written decision on your appeal.

Appeals to the Appeal Board or the Insurance Court are processed free of charge.

The first appellate body for the following benefits is the Social Security Appeal Board:

  • Adoption grant
  • Basic unemployment allowance
  • Care allowance for pensioners
  • Child benefit
  • Child care allowances
  • Child maintenance allowance
  • Conscript's allowance
  • Coverage under the Finnish social security system
  • Disability benefits and interpreting services for the disabled
  • General housing allowance
  • Guarantee pension
  • Housing allowance for pensioners
  • Job alternation compensation
  • Labour market subsidy
  • Maternity grant
  • Maternity, paternity and parental allowances
  • National pension
  • Occupational health care
  • Pension assistance
  • Rehabilitation allowance
  • Rehabilitation decision
  • Reimbursement of medical expenses
  • Sickness allowance
  • Special care allowance
  • Survivors' pension
  • Temporary compensation due to an epidemic outbreak
  • Training allowance
  • Training subsidy

The first appellate body for the following benefits is the Student Financial Aid Review Board:

  • Interest allowance
  • Financial aid for students
  • School transport subsidy

The highest appellate body for all benefits is the Insurance Court.

The Unemployment Appeal Board merged with the Social Security Appeal Board on 1 January 2018.  The merger will have no effect on pending appeal cases or the delivery or processing of documents.

Contact information of the appeal bodies

Social Security Appeal Board
Pasilan virastokeskus, Ratapihantie 7, 00520 Helsinki
PO Box 39, 00521 Helsinki
Customer service number: 0295 163 800 (weekdays from 9 am to 3 pm)
Tel. 0295 163 801

Student Financial Aid Review Board
Toinen linja 17, 4th floor
PO Box 386, 00531 Helsinki
Tel. 0295 333 000, (09) 160 01

Insurance Court
Ratapihantie 9
PO Box 1005, 00521 Helsinki
Tel. 029 564 3200