Disability pension and rehabilitation subsidy
Disability pension secures your livelihood during long-term work disability. The pension usually commences after one year of sick leave. During sick leave, Kela can pay you sickness allowance.
You can be eligible for disability pension if you are unable to work due to an illness or injury and when rehabilitation is not an option considering your health.
Disability pensions glossary
Different types of disability pension include
- full disability pension
- rehabilitation subsidy
- partial disability pension
- partial rehabilitation subsidy.
Disability pension is often also referred to as “sickness pension”.
Rehabilitation allowance refers to subsistence paid during vocational rehabilitation.
Disability pension is permanent pension, while rehabilitation subsidy is fixed-term pension. Fixed-term rehabilitation subsidy can also be granted if it is estimated that work ability can be recovered with treatment or rehabilitation. If recovery with treatment or rehabilitation is improbable, permanent disability pension is possible.
Partial rehabilitation subsidy or partial disability pension can be granted if work ability is impaired but working is partially possible.
When can you apply for disability pension or rehabilitation subsidy?
Disability pension or rehabilitation allowance is applied for after a long-term sick leave, most commonly after a period of sickness allowance granted by Kela. Disability pension requires an uninterrupted period of one year of work disability. You can apply for disability pension if you are not eligible for old-age pension.
The doctor who is treating you writes in a medical statement B whether disability pension or fixed-term rehabilitation subsidy is being applied for.
Amount of disability pensions
Before applying for pension, you can calculate an estimate of your pension in our Online Service.
Our online service will provide you with an estimate of the amount of full disability pension and partial disability pension. The amount of partial disability pension is one-half of the amount of full disability pension.
Frequently asked questions
Sometimes we need to wait for information about the end of sickness allowance from Kela. Kela usually provides this information 6 months after the start of sickness allowance.
Partial disability pension can commence when you inform us of a retirement and your gross earnings have decreased within the earnings range mentioned in the preliminary decision.
Fixed-term rehabilitation ends on the date mentioned in the decision. If your work ability has not recovered during rehabilitation allowance, you can apply for an extension to rehabilitation allowance by submitting a new B certificate on your health.
Full disability pension continues until retirement age, at which point it will change into old-age pension of the same amount. Partial disability pension also changes into disability pension at retirement age, but, at the same time, the amount doubles, meaning that it changes into the amount of full disability pension.
The retirement age of old-age pension after disability pension and partial disability pension depends on when the person’s work disability began:
- If work disability commenced in or after 2017, the disability pension will change into old-age pension at the lowest retirement age of each age group.
- If work disability commenced in or before 2016, the disability or partial disability pension will change into old-age pension at the age of 63 years.
- If work disability commenced prior to 2006, the pension will change into old-age pension at the age of 65 years.
While on disability pension and partial disability pension, you can work up to your personal earnings limit without it affecting the payment of your disability pension.
You can calculate the earnings limit in our online service under “Pension record and pension estimates” if you have not yet applied for a pension and received a pension decision.
If you have received a pension decision, the decision specifies your personal earnings limit. You can review your previous decisions in our online service under “Documents”.
Your earnings must remain below the earnings limit mentioned in the decision. Earnings include all earned income subject to withholding tax received during pension, i.e. gross earnings, such as monthly salary, holiday bonus and performance bonuses. For self-employed persons, earned income includes YEL insurance earned income and any earnings from gainful employment.
The indices that secure employment pensions are the employment pension index and wage coefficient. The purpose of index security is to take into account the change in the value of money. Therefore, the amount of pensions is annually adjusted based on the indices.
At times, we need to wait for the pension index for the current year to be confirmed before calculating the pension and issuing the decision. The indices are always confirmed by the beginning of November during the current year, after which the pension decision can be issued.