More opportunities for studying on earnings-related daily allowance

The Parliament has passed an amendment as a result of which job-seekers who are at least 25 years old have the opportunity to study for a short time without losing their unemployment benefit. The Act was intended to enter into force already on 1 August 2018. The matter has now proceeded and the Act is entering into force at the turn of the year.

Amendment to law will increase the studying opportunities of the unemployed

As a general rule, studying prevents the payment of earnings-related daily allowance. The current system allows receiving earnings-related daily allowance during part-time studying or if studying is the most appropriate way to improve expertise and opportunities to get or keep a job. The evaluation on those is made by the TE Office, and the set of means includes e.g. independent studies supported with an unemployment benefit.

As a result of the amendment, the conditions for supporting studies would be interpreted broadly. If the maximum duration of the planned studies is six months, the TE Office would not evaluate the job-seeker’s individual need for training or the appropriateness of the studies at all. In practice, you can choose very freely what you want to study.

Previously, one requirement for support was that the studying was full-time. In addition to that, short-term studies can be part-time. What matters is that the studies on the whole last for a maximum of six months. So the purpose is not to support new studies leading to a degree, but provide a route for continuing education and completion of interrupted studies.

Unlike with other forms of support, during such short-term studying the unemployed is obliged to seek and be prepared to take on a full-time job, and participate in employment-promoting services when they are offered to him or her. According to the Government proposal related to the amendment, short-term studies could, however, be taken into account case by case in considering what services can appropriately offered to the job-seeker.

So in the future, studies lasting for a maximum of six months will not prevent the payment of unemployment benefit to a job-seeker who is over 25 years old. The TE Office will nevertheless need to be informed about the studies before the start of studies, so that the TE Office can submit a suitable statement to the unemployment fund.

Unlike with employment promoting services, no increase in daily allowance or expenses are paid for the duration of short-term studies.

Activation model has been taken into account

It is specifically taken into account in the proposal that short-term studying fulfils the requirements of the activation model. In the future it will be possible to fulfil the requirements of the activation model with part-time studying. In addition, other full-time studies that last for more than five days will reset the activity review period and restore the unemployment benefit to its full amount if it has been decreased.

The amendment is very welcome. It includes a much awaited reform that allows using unemployment benefit more freely for promoting your employment.