Adoption of the national incomes register simplifies the application process for housing allowances

Starting 1 April 2019, customers no longer have to enclose pay slips with the application for housing allowances. Kela obtains salary information from the national incomes register. However, recipients of housing allowance must notify Kela if their income changes.

Kela no longer requires customers to enclose proof of wage and salary income with an application for general housing allowance or conscript’s allowance. A remark stating that Kela retrieves wage and salary details from the national incomes register has been added to the application forms.  The change will be implemented at the same time both in the e-service and on the application forms.

Even after the adoption of the incomes register, recipients of housing allowance payments must notify Kela of any changes in their household income. Kela carries out a review of the housing allowance if household income increases by at least EUR 400 per month or decreases by at least EUR 200 per month compared to the previous housing allowance decision.

Kela paid general housing allowance to a total of 376,500 households in December 2018.

Fewer supporting documents needed to accompany applications

Kela is adopting the incomes register gradually, and will use it to review benefit applications. Since March 2019, proof of wage and salary income is no longer requested from persons applying for social assistance, unemployment benefits, child care allowance or housing allowance for pensioners, along with some other benefits.

The employer must report the data to the register within 5 calendar days of the payment of a wage or salary. Not all employers have reported the data. This may mean that at least initially Kela will have to request also pay details that should be available from the national incomes register.

The customer can also check if the employer has reported the pay details to the national incomes register (www.tulorekisteri.fi). A bank user ID and passwords are needed to log into the incomes register.

The benefit determination may also be affected by incomes that are not reported to the national incomes register. Such incomes include for instance income on investments (rental income, interest income, dividend income), entrepreneurial income and income from abroad. The customer must also henceforth provide documentation on such incomes.

Instructions for applying for benefits at www.kela.fi

More information on the national incomes register