The right of entrepreneurs to claim labour market support will continue until the end of June 2021. The Government decided on the matter on 27 January 2021 and the Ministry of Economic Affairs and Employment announced on Friday that it will start preparing the legislative amendment immediately.
Entrepreneurs have been temporarily entitled to labour market support if full-time work in the company has ended due to the coronavirus pandemic. The temporary extension to entrepreneurs’ right to unemployment benefit currently in force is scheduled to end on 31 March 2021.
“Many entrepreneurs continue to feel the pinch because of the coronavirus epidemic. During the crisis, labour market support has provided security for small entrepreneurs, in particular, whose livelihoods have become increasingly uncertain. There is clearly still a need for this support, so we will begin urgent preparations for legislation to continue it,” Minister of Employment Tuula Haatainen says.
In principle, all entrepreneurs are entitled to the support regardless the type of business, as long as they meet the conditions for it.
“It has been our aim to make labour market support for entrepreneurs a simple benefit so that it can take into account the different situations that people find themselves in,” Haatainen adds.
Last year, the Finnish Social Security Institution (Kela) paid labour market support to 44,000 entrepreneurs, for a total amount of 165.8 million euros.
What are the conditions?
Entrepreneurs are temporarily entitled to labour market support to deal with the sudden and unforeseen decline in demand due to the coronavirus epidemic. Labour market support is one form of unemployment benefits.
To be eligible for labour market support, an entrepreneur must meet the following conditions:
- Full-time employment of the entrepreneur has ended.
- The monthly income from the entrepreneurial activities is less than 1,089.67 euros per each person engaged in these activities as an entrepreneur.
The end of the person’s full-time work or the reduction in income must be due to the coronavirus epidemic. The entrepreneur does not have to cease their business activities in order to receive labour market support.
In order to receive this benefit, the applicant must first register as a jobseeker with the public employment services (TE Office), which must issue a labour policy statement on their entitlement to this kind of support to Kela. The entrepreneur can then apply for labour market support from Kela.