Allowance for the self-employed

Self-employment in the unemployment security system

You are considerded self-employed when you work outside an employment relationship.

You are also considerded self-employed when you have an employment relationship to a business that you or your family owns partly or in full. If you work in a family-owned business, remember to check whether you are included in the employees’ or self-employed persons’ unemployment insurance cover.


Full- and part-time self-employment

Self-employment can be full- or part-time. Self-employment is full-time, when the amount of work your business requires prevents you from accepting full-time work in an employment relationship. A full time self-employed person can not be a member in an employees’ unemployment fund except for an 18-month transition period (see Changing between self-employment and employment). Also, earnings-related allowance can not be paid during full-time self-employment.

Self-employment is generally part-time, when you have been working full-time in an employment relationship while operating your business. Part-time employment does not prevent you from being a member in an employees’ unemployment fund. You can also receive adjusted allowance during part-time self-employment. However, self-employment is not taken into account for employees’ employment condition.

There are two unemployment funds for the self-employed:


When you are self-employed

  • You can join an unemployment fund for the self-employed if your early income on which your pension insurance (YEL, MYEL, TyEL) is based on is at least 12,564 euro.
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  • If you are full-time self-employed, you can not be a member in an unemployment fund for employees except for an 18-month transition period.
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  • When you claim for unemployment allowance, the TE Office will examine if the your self-employment will prevent you from receiving allowance. Earnings-related allowance can not be paid during full-time self-employment.

Sivu päivitetty viimeksi 02.01.2017

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