To receive earnings-related daily allowance, you must meet the working condition
The minimum requirement is 26 working weeks
You can apply for earnings-related daily allowance from the unemployment fund in the event of unemployment or lay-off if you have met the working condition while a member of the unemployment fund and paid the membership fees for the working period.
The working condition means that before the start of your unemployment you have been in paid employment at least 26 weeks with at least 18 weekly working hours each calendar week. Working weeks can be accumulated in periods of different lengths as long as they have been accumulated in the 28 months prior to unemployment.
The review period of 28 months can be extended to up to seven years if, for example, you have studied full-time, been on parental leave or received sickness/rehabilitation allowance.
Work performed while receiving partial sickness allowance does not count towards the working condition. Periods for which you have been paid reduced sick pay based on a collective agreement also do not count towards the working condition. However, these periods extend the 28-month review period for the working condition.
Work for which you have been paid in accordance with a collective agreement counts towards the working condition. If you work in a sector that does not have a collective agreement, the minimum pay for full-time employment must be at least EUR 1,283 (in 2022) per month for your working weeks to count towards the working condition. Paid annual leave also counts towards the working condition if the holiday pay is paid on the basis of no less than 18 weekly working hours. Periods for which your employer has paid you normal (not reduced) sick pay also count towards the working condition. A notice period based on law or collective agreement also counts towards the working condition, even if you have no obligation to work if employee pension and other employer’s contributions are paid from the earnings.
If you are at least 60 years of age, full calendar weeks during which you have participated in employment promoting services, that have been organised based on an obligation set for the TE Office, may also count towards the working condition. The Employment and Economic Office (TE Office) is obliged to arrange an opportunity for jobseekers no less than 60 years of age to participate in work supported by pay subsidy or employment promoting services if the jobseeker has reached the maximum allowance payment period.
Right to earnings-related daily allowance may be lost
You may lose your right to earnings-related daily allowance if you have been outside the labour market for more than six months without an acceptable reason, as referred to in the Unemployment Security Act. The loss of working condition means that you cannot receive earnings-related daily allowance before you have reaccumulated the full 26 weeks towards the working condition. Acceptable reasons for being outside the labour market include periods of sick leave or rehabilitation allowance; maternity, paternity or parental leave; care of a child under 3 years of age; full-time studies or grant periods; job alternation leave and employment promoting services, among other reasons.
Please note that your employer paying you severance pay is not an acceptable reason for being outside the labour market even if you do not receive daily allowance for the period of your severance pay. In order to retain your right to earnings-related daily allowance after receiving severance pay, you must be registered as an unemployed jobseeker at the TE Office during the severance deferral period. Therefore, it is advisable to register with the TE Office as soon as your employment ends.
Please note that partial early old-age pension is not an acceptable reason for being outside the labour market and you must work at least 18 hours per week during the pension period to retain your right to earnings-related daily allowance in case of any lay-off or unemployment.
As a general rule, working weeks of at least 18 hours count towards the working condition, but in some sectors the accumulation of the working condition differs from this rule (teachers, homeworkers, etc.). Further information on the accumulation of the working condition in such situations is available from the unemployment fund.
Working in a family business
You can also accumulate days towards your working condition while working in a family business, because starting from 1 July 2019 working in a family business has been considered paid employment. However, you must not have ownership or controlling interest in the family company. The working condition is 52 weeks, and the working weeks must be accumulated within a period of 28 months.
The TE Office may grant an employer pay subsidy for employing an employee. Pay-subsidised work counts towards the working condition at a rate of 75 percent. In practice, this means that in order to accumulate the 26-week working condition in pay-subsidised employment you must have at least 35 working weeks. The work must also meet the requirements of the working condition with regard to pay and working hours. If pay-subsidised work is organised on the basis of the employment obligation, working time counts towards the working condition in full. Further information on pay-subsidised work and the employment obligation is available from the TE Office.