Once a residence permit has been issued, it is a good idea to apply to Kela for social security coverage.
Asylum seekers who have been issued a Finnish residence permit are eligible for the same Kela benefits and other social security services as all permanent residents. A residence permit is required for social security coverage.
An application for social security coverage can be made on a paper form or online. If the application is accepted, a personal Kela card will be sent to the applicant's home address within the next 30 days. No separate application is needed for the Kela card.
After eligibility for social security in Finland has been confirmed, it is possible to apply for benefits that offer assistance in different situations. Applicants are subject to the same eligibility conditions as any other residents of Finland. While the coverage status can be determined in conjunction with an application for benefit, this may delay the application process.
Among the benefits that Kela can provide are a housing allowance for renters with low or no income. Persons with a residence permit accompanied by a dependent child under 17 years of age can get a child benefit. The child too must have a residence permit.
The infopankki.fi site offers a variety of information about living in Finland, about Finnish society and government, and about the services available to residents. Kela and Infopankki have joined forces to produce material such as a comprehensive overview of the Finnish social security system. The site contains information in several languages.
Additional information for customers:
Kela’s benefits for those who have been granted asylum
For media inquiries, contact:
Kela, Benefit Services,
Merja Siltanen-Kallio, Tel. 050 551 6367
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