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Home Earnings-related daily allowance working condition changes – accumulate the necessary working hours soon

Earnings-related daily allowance working condition changes – accumulate the necessary working hours soon


  • Income security
  • Law change
  • Membership
  • Unemployment

In September, there will be significant changes to the working condition for entitlement to earnings-related allowance. The length of the working condition will double and it will become euro-based. Although the law will not apply until the autumn, it may already have an impact.

“If you don’t have time to accumulate the full amount of the current working condition before the change in the law, you can’t plan on receiving unemployment benefit in the autumn if you become unemployed or are laid off,” says Petja Eklund, a specialist at the YTK Unemployment Fund.

The working condition is a prerequisite for being entitled to benefits during unemployment or a period of lay-off. The September change in the law is primarily reflected in the need to work longer to qualify for the daily allowance.

“Currently, 26 weeks of work, or about half a year, is sufficient to qualify for earnings-related daily allowance. After the change in the law, you have to work for at least 12 months. The longer 12-month working condition will apply if you earn enough after 2.9.2024 to meet the half or full month of the working condition,” says Eklund.

From September onwards, the months that count towards the working condition will be considered on the basis of salary. Calendar months during which you have received at least 930 € in wages are counted towards this criterion. In the future, it will also be possible to accrue working time in half-months, if you are paid between 465 € – 929 €.

“The changes to the working condition also have an impact on the membership condition of the unemployment fund. As of September, the earliest you can receive income support is after 12 months of membership. Therefore, it is not worth delaying joining the unemployment fund, but do it now.”

Vigilant in the accumulation of working condition

During the transition period, it is possible that the working condition will be accumulated as a combination of the old and the new model. If you have not had time to accumulate all your working time when the new law comes into force, the calendar weeks you have accumulated will be converted into months under the new law and will correspond to the new working condition.

“This is something to pay attention to now. If you have not fully accumulated the current working condition by the beginning of September, you will not be entitled to the same earnings-related allowance as under the old model,” says Eklund.

He encourages anyone who has recently joined the unemployment fund to assess their situation.

“It is good to understand that although the change in the law will only apply from next autumn, in practice it will already affect those who are only now starting to collect the working condition from zero. If you only start accumulating working time now, you will not have time to accumulate working condition under the current law before the new law applies. In practice, therefore, the length of working condition in these situations is already longer than it is today,” Eklund points out.

For the member, Eklund sees both positive and negative aspects of the change in the law.

“Very low incomes may not be enough to accumulate working condition after September, even if the hours worked would have been sufficient in the past. On the other hand, in the future you will be able to collect the working condition with unevenly distributed part-time work in situations where you cannot do so at present. Moreover, if the income is high, it will be possible to collect the working condition with fewer hours than before.”

As a general rule, the amount of the daily allowance or the way in which it is claimed will not be significantly affected by the change. The change will not affect daily allowances already in payment, but will apply to benefits payable in stages after 1.9.2024.

Remember these:

  • From 2.9.2024, the length of working condition required for entitlement to earnings-related daily allowance will be extended from 26 calendar weeks to 12 months. In addition, the working condition will change from hourly to salary-based.
  • If possible, make sure you accumulate your working time by 1.9.2024. Currently, you will meet the working condition if you work at least 18 hours a week for 26 calendar weeks. However, depending on when you become unemployed, you may be subject to a longer working condition from 2 September.
  • Always make sure that your pay is at least in line with the collective agreement or the Labour Contract Act.
  • The September change in the law will also affect the conditions of membership of the unemployment fund. From September, you must have been a member of the unemployment fund for at least 12 months before you are entitled to unemployment benefit. It is therefore advisable to become a member immediately.
  • Being a member of the unemployment fund will bring you important benefits. As a member, you will receive on average around 1 000 € more money each month compared to the basic daily allowance from Kela.

Read more:

Working condition

Euroisation of the working condition

Legislative changes in 2024