How to claim maternity allowance

  1. Claim maternity allowance online. To log in to Kela's online customer service, use your online banking user ID and password or a mobile certificate. The application for maternity allowance can be found under Hakemukset ja ilmoitukset (Applications and notifications) > Vanhempainpäiväraha (Allowances for parents).
  2. When claiming via the online customer service, state the child's expected due date. The system will show you the maternity allowance period, beginning 30 working days before the expected due date, which is the latest point at which the maternity leave must begin. If you wish to claim the maternity allowance to be paid to you earlier than normally, write the desired start date of your maternity leave, which can be 31-50 working days before the expected due date.
  3. Scan or take a photo of supporting documents and send them over the Internet. Enclose with the claim:
    • A certificate showing that the pregnancy has lasted 154 days and that you have undergone a medical examination before the end of the 4th month of pregnancy. This pregnancy certificate can be obtained from your doctor or from the maternity and child welfare clinic.
    • If you have already submitted the certificate when claiming maternity grant, it is not necessary to submit it again.

      Claiming online is quick and easy

      You can easily file the claim and supporting documentation via the online customer service system. Documents photographed with a phone are accepted if the photographs are clear.

      Send a claim
  4. The amount of the maternity allowance is based on your income. Please note the following:
    • When you claim a maternity allowance that starts on 1 January 2020 or later, the maternity allowance is determined on the basis of an annual income. Kela usually receives information on wages and salaries from the national incomes register, so this information need not be reported to Kela separately.  Read more on the annual income. If you have received a special maternity grant for the same pregnancy, the maternity allowance is calculated on the basis of the same income.

    • If you are paid a salary during the maternity leave, declare that on the claim. The maternity allowance is paid to your employer for the period during which you are paid a salary. In this case the employer has to file a claim of their own.

    • If the expected due date of your child comes before the second-youngest child is 3 years old, and you claim the immediately preceding allowance based on the second-youngest child, you need not state that in the claim. This information will be available to Kela automatically when dealing with your claim.

    • If your right to the maternity allowance has started before 31 December 2019, please read the instructions on the How the amount of parental allowances is determined until 31 December 2019 page.

  5. You can claim the maternity grant, parental allowance and child benefit at the same time.
  6. The online customer service shows whether your claim has been decided on, the benefit amount and the payment dates. You can also see any possible reminders concerning, for instance, documents missing from your claim.

Alternatively you can fill in and print out the application form for Parental benefits for mothers (SV 9e) and send it with necessary attachments to Kela.

When to claim

You can file a claim as soon as you have received a certificate of pregnancy from your doctor or from a maternity and child welfare clinic. Claim no later than 2 months before the expected due date.

Remember to inform your employer of your maternity leave and about how long you will be on leave no later than 2 months before your maternity leave begins. Ask your employer how to provide this information.

Receiving a decision on your claim

If the period for the maternity allowance starts on 1 January 2020 or later, you will at the earliest receive the decision during the month that precedes the month when the maternity allowance is first paid, i.e. when the information on the annual income is available.

If you are paid a salary during the maternity leave, Kela cannot give a decision on your claim until your employer has filed a claim for the maternity allowance for the period when you are being paid a salary. It is possible that your employer cannot provide this information in advance until it has paid you a salary during your maternity leave. This means that you may already be on maternity leave before you receive a decision from Kela about the maternity allowance. Your employer can claim the maternity allowance by reporting your salary during your maternity leave via the online service for employers or on the Y 17e form. The employer can also apply for benefits via the national incomes register, if the company’s salary system has a readiness for this. The employer also needs to have given consent for receiving an electronic decision.

Report changes in your circumstances

Remember to report all changes in your circumstances to Kela (including starting work or study) so that benefits can be paid to correctly.

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