Unemployment benefits for self-employed persons

You can get unemployment benefits if you set up in business while unemployed or if you are self-employed on a part-time basis.

You can also get unemployment benefits if you have ended the self-employment activity completely or if your business has been hard hit by the coronavirus epidemic.

If you start self-employment while unemployed

Kela can pay an unemployment benefit for 4 months if you set up in business while unemployed. The possible income from self-employment will be adjusted with the benefit.

Do as follows

  1. Register as an unemployed jobseeker with the TE Services (te-services.fi). The TE Services will issue a statement to Kela on your right to unemployment benefits.
  2. Apply for an unemployment benefit on the internet.
    • Kela will contact you if necessary to ask for information about the incomes and expenses of your business. After that, Kela uses the taxation data to adjust your income with the benefit.
  3. Report continued unemployment to Kela on an unemployment status report.
    • After 4 months, the TE Services will investigate whether you are self-employed on a full-time or a part-time basis. 
    • If you are self-employed on a part-time basis, you can henceforth get an unemployment benefit at the same time.
    • If you are self-employed on a full-time basis, the unemployment benefit can no longer be paid to you.

If you are self-employed on a part-time basis

Do as follows

  1. Register as an unemployed jobseeker with the TE Services (te-services.fi). The TE Services will issue a statement to Kela on your right to unemployment benefits.
  2. Apply for an unemployment benefit on the internet. If you are self-employed on a part-time basis, Kela can pay you an adjusted unemployment benefit.
  3. Report continued unemployment to Kela on an unemployment status report.