Delays expected in telephone assistance for students – Kela recommends using the online customer service
Kela will this week send out repayment proposal letters to students who have been overpaid financial aid. Students can avoid delays by signing in to Kela's online customer service to look up their repayment proposal or to request a review of their case.
Kela has sent out proposal letters concerning the recovery of overpaid financial aid to students whose income in 2016 exceeded the maximum limit allowed under the student financial aid scheme. Kela expects a spike in phone calls from students later in the week, with as many as five times as many calls as usual.
The peak period is expected to begin on Thursday afternoon and to continue to next week.
Kela reminds students that the letter is a proposal because Kela does not have detailed information about what part of each student’s income was earned during periods of active study. If a student exceeded the annual income limit because of income earned at some other time (for example after graduation), the amount recovered from the student may be reduced or there may be nothing to pay back at all.
Students can submit a request to Kela to review their case. The deadline for requesting a review is 22 March 2018. In the request, students should provide information about their studies and specify when the income was earned. This information is required from students who began their course of study, graduated or used up their maximum financial aid entitlement during 2016.
Students can compose the review request in their own words and submit it using the Viestit (Messages) function on Kela’s online customer service at www.kela.fi/asiointi (in Finnish) . Students should choose Opiskelijan tuet (Benefits for students) and Opintotuen tulovalvonta (Financial aid income check) as the subject of their message.
Students who choose not to submit a review request must pay back the amount being recovered by 16 April 2018. Via Kela’s online customer service, students can propose a repayment plan by selecting “Hakemukset ja ilmoitukset” (Applications and notifications) and then “Perinnän maksusuunnitelma” (Repayment plan for recovery of overpaid benefit). Students can also contact Kela’s Overpayment Recovery Centre at 020 634 4940 to discuss repayment arrangements.