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Amendments to the Unemployment Security Act presented to Parliament

On 2 April 2020, amendments to the Unemployment Security Act were presented to Parliament, along with a solution for the organisation of unemployment security for entrepreneurs.

Concessions to the Unemployment Security Act

The Government has proposed temporary amendments to the Unemployment Security Act (HE 38/2020).

  • According to the proposal, it would be possible to pay an earnings-related daily allowance for the waiting period at the beginning of the unemployment or lay-off period.
  • The proposal would also reduce the employee's working condition from 26 calendar weeks to 13 calendar weeks.
  • In addition, the earnings-related allowance payable on the basis of a lay-off would not use up the maximum payment period of the daily allowance.
  • At the same time, the definition of lay-off in the law would also be redefined to match the established application practice.

The changes would also apply to basic unemployment allowance and labour market subsidy where applicable.

The laws are intended to enter into force as soon as possible and will remain in force until 6 July 2020. The amendments would apply from 16 March 2020.

Organisation of unemployment security for entrepreneurs

Updated: Law accepted 6.4.2020.

The Government has proposed temporary amendments to the Unemployment Security Act (HE35/2020) to help secure the livelihoods of entrepreneurs during the exceptional circumstances arising from the COVID 19 pandemic.

It would be possible to pay labour market subsidy to a full-time self-employed person whose full-time employment in the company was considered to have ended because of a highly widespread serious infectious disease. In addition, a person's full-time employment could, under certain conditions, be considered to have ended if their income from the business activity had reduced and the reduction in income was due to a highly widespread serious infectious disease. In these situations, a person's full-time employment could be considered to have ended even if the business was not closed down.

In order to be paid labour market subsidy, the person would need to register as a jobseeker with the TE Office and a labour policy statement must be given to Kela on the person’s right to labour market subsidy. The person would be entitled to labour market subsidy even if they were studying, for example. Under the Unemployment Security Act, a jobseeker who has stopped working as an entrepreneur would be obliged to take up employment offered by an employer.

The labour market subsidy would not be subject to a waiting period, needs testing or provisions regarding partial labour market subsidy.

The Act is intended to enter into force as soon as possible and would remain in force until 30 June 2020. The law would apply to labour market subsidy that is paid between 16 March 2020 and 30 June 2020.

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