Pensions and benefits for a child who has lost a parent
A child aged under 20 who has lost one or both parents has the right to an orphan’s pension and possibly some other financial benefits.
An orphan’s pension is paid to a child aged under 20 whose mother, father or other guardian has died. A student may also receive orphan’s pension paid by Kela until the age of 21.
The orphan's pension is based on the dead parent's earnings-related pension or self-employed person’s pension. If the parent had not worked for long enough to get an earnings-related pension or a self-employed person’s pension, the orphan’s pension is paid by Kela.
To apply for the orphan’s pension, you only need to fill in one form. You do not need to know if the orphan’s pension should be paid from your parent’s earnings-related pension, self-employed person’s pension or national pension.
Submit a separate application for each child. If one of the guardians is still alive, their income will not affect the amount of orphan’s pension paid.
An orphan's pension that is paid by an employment pension company is based on the income the parent earned during their life as an employee or a self-employed worker and the pension contributions paid on this income. If the orphan's pension paid on this basis is quite small, Kela will pay a supplementary amount.
The basic amount of the orphan's pension paid by Kela is the same for everybody. Kela usually pays the orphan's pension to the parent or other guardian of a child aged under 18.
The widow(er)’s share of the survivor’s pension is paid to the children as orphan’s pension if there is no widow(er) eligible for the spouse’s pension.
The orphan’s pension will be paid until the child reaches the age of 20. If the child is a full-time student, the pension will be paid until the age of 21. If the pension recipient is aged 18 or over, the pension is paid to their bank account.
If the parent was in working age and at work, their children aged under 18 may receive compensation from group life insurance coverage for employees. Applications for compensation should be submitted to the Employees' Group Life Assurance Pool. This compensation is a one-of payment.
If the parent worked for the State, the immediate family can be paid a benefit equivalent to group life insurance. A benefit equivalent to group life insurance is applied for from the State Treasury.
An orphan’s pension may also be paid from an accident insurance, traffic insurance, military accident insurance, military disability insurance and medical malpractice insurance policy. If the guardian has lived or worked abroad, the child may also receive an orphan's pension from each country the guardian lived in. The dead parent’s employer will help you with finding out and applying for these insurance payments. Ask the employer about the insurance company in which the employer has taken out these insurance policies.