Concepts: Statistics on child maintenance allowance

Statistical units


Recipients include persons who during the reference period received regular payments of child maintenance allowance. Typically the recipient is a parent or other person in whose care the child is. The allowance can also be granted and paid to the child him/herself, if the child has reached the age of 15. The child can also be recorded as the recipient if he or she is in institutional or family care, and the allowance is paid to the municipality.


The total for children includes children for whom child maintenance allowance was paid in the reference period.

Person liable for maintenance

Persons liable for maintenance are parents with outstanding child support debt being collected by Kela.

Benefit expenditure

The benefit expenditure includes all payments of child maintenance allowance made in the reference period; i.e., in addition to regular payments also payments made in arrears and payments returned. The benefit expenditure corresponds to the amounts recorded in Kela’s accounts.

Child support payments collected

The amount of outstanding child support, including late-payment interest, is collected from the persons liable for maintenance.

Statistical classifications


Refers to the age of the recipient or the child at the end of the reference year. If the child maintenance allowance was paid to the municipality, refers to the age of the child.


For the recipient, the municipality in which he or she was resident at the end of the year. Children’s municipality of residence is determined according to their parent’s or provider municipality of residence. The classification by regions is based on the municipality of residence.

To facilitate regional comparisons, certain statistical data have been adjusted to regional population totals. The population data are based on Kela’s database of general data, and refer to the situation at the end of the year.

Compensable and non-compensable child maintenance allowance

Child maintenance allowance payments are compensable if awarded on account of the non-payment of child support. Compensable child maintenance allowance is collected by Kela from the person liable for maintenance. Non-compensable child maintenance allowance is paid for example if no one has been designated as liable for maintenance, if the child maintenance allowance is paid supplementally to child support, or if an agreement specifying no payments of child support has been made because of reduced ability to provide maintenance.