How to apply for pay security
Finland has a pay security system to ensure that employees are paid their contractual dues in the event of the employer becoming insolvent. Employment-related dues can be paid through the system provided that the amount and legal grounds have been established.
An employee can apply for pay security him-/herself, or transfer the outstanding debt to be collected by his/her labour union. If the employer is bankrupt, the bankruptcy estate can also apply for pay security for its employees, subject to authorisation by the ELY Centre.
All receivables based on an employment relationship and payable by the employer can be paid as pay security. Below are some examples of amounts that can be paid as pay security:
- regular wages (monthly or hourly wages, wages based on piecework or commissions)
- holiday pay and holiday compensation
- bonus holiday pay and holiday bonuses
- compensation for accrued days off
- wages for notice periods for termination
- pay for waiting days
- tool and travel compensation
- daily allowances
- damages based on the employment relationship
- payables from working time accounts.
The Seamen’s Pay Security Act ensures payment of claims made by employees referred to in the Seafarers’ Employment Contracts Act (756/2011) and arising from an employment relationship, in the event of the employer's insolvency.
Pay security is paid within a week from the date of the decision granting pay security. Pay security is subject to a withholding tax (also called retention tax). The tax rate is 30 percent on any amounts up to € 5,000 and after that 50 percent, unless you have submitted a tax card.
The insolvency of the employer as referred to in the Wage Guarantee Act is established by the pay security authority.
The State later claims the amounts paid as pay security from the employer or the bankruptcy estate, with interest. A decision granting pay security is immediately enforceable for the employer. The debts are collected through foreclosure or proof of debt.
Do the following
You can file for pay security through our web service or by filling out a form. You can get the form either online or from the TE Office and submit the application to any TE Office or ELY Centre.
If you are applying for pay security for yourself, please fill out form Palkkaturvahakemus (A) (for employees).
If you are acting as trustee for a labour union, please fill out form B (for unions).
Pay security applications are processed at the Uusimaa ELY Centre. Please take note that it may take several months to process your application.
To whom and on what terms
Apply for pay security within three months from the date the amount has come due. Damages without a specific due date and based on the law or a contract should be claimed as pay security within three months from the date when a legally binding sentence has been passed or an agreement has been reached in compliance with established labour market practice.
– If you are a seaman, you should make your claim while a maritime lien as referred to in chapter 3, section 2, subsection 1 of the Maritime Act (674/1994) is in force. Damages without a specific due date, based on the law or a contract and that no longer enjoy maritime lien status must be claimed as pay security within three months from the court sentence becoming final or an agreement is reached in compliance with established labour market practice.
– If you haven't filed an application within the prescribed time, the debt can no longer be paid as pay security.
You can only receive pay security if you are an employee. Pay security is not applicable to executive directors of joint stock companies, general partners in limited partnerships, partners in partnerships and own-account workers. Other persons exerting control over a company may also be considered not entitled to pay security.
Only clear, non-disputed debts can be paid as pay security. If an employer contests a debt filed as pay security and the validity of the debt cannot be established through the pay security procedure, the debt cannot be paid until its amount and legal grounds are determined in a legally binding sentence.
Travel or other costs can be paid as pay security if they are ordinary and not excessive.
The maximum amount claimable as pay security from the same employer is € 15,200. No maximum limit applies to seamen's pay security. For working time accounts, the maximum outstanding debt that can be filed as pay security is an amount equal to six months’ wages with the same employer. This also applies to seamen.
There are provisions limiting the right to pay security, intended to prevent abuse. If there are justified reasons to do so, pay security authorities have the right to deny pay security or to reconsider the amount to be paid. This may occur if, for example, the employee has continued to work for the employer even after it must have become clear that the employer cannot pay wages.
If your pay security application has been denied, you should follow the instructions for appeal given in the decision.
The service is free of charge.
The service is provided by: