If you live in Finland, you may be eligible for a maternity grant (äitiysavustus). The maternity grant is according to your choice either of the baby box (äitiyspakkaus) or a fixed sum of money free of taxes. The baby box consists of baby clothes and baby care articles. Most mothers choose the baby box because it is worth more financially.
You are entitled to maternity grant when
- your pregnancy has continued for five months
- you have had a medical examination before the end of your fourth month of pregnancy and
- you are covered by Finnish social security.
When you are expecting a baby, Kela can pay you maternity allowance (äitiysraha).
A mother starts her maternity leave usually 30 weekdays before the expected date of delivery. The mother then receives maternity allowance which is paid for a period of approximately 4 months in total.
You can apply for maternity allowance if you are covered by Finnish social security and you have been continuously covered by health insurance in Finland, another EU or EEA member state or Switzerland for at least 180 days before your due date. Kela also pays maternity allowance on these same terms to students and unemployed persons.
Applying for maternity grant and maternity allowance
Apply for maternity grant and maternity allowance from Kela at least two months before your due date.
You can apply for maternity grant and maternity allowance via the Kela website. Log in using your bank identifiers or a mobile certificate. The service provides advice on how to fill in the application form. At the same address you can also see how the processing of your application is proceeding. After your application has been processed, you can see at the same address the amount of benefit you will be paid and the payment date. The online service is available in Finnish and Swedish.
Alternatively, you can apply for maternity grant and maternity allowance by filling in a paper form and posting it, along with its appendices to any Kela office. You can get help in filling in the application at a maternity clinic.
Parenthood allowances are taxable benefits for which you need to acquire a tax card (verokortti). Read more on the InfoFinland page Taxation.
Don’t forget to notify your employer about your maternity leave 2 months before it begins.
Early maternity allowance
If a mother-to-be so chooses, she can start her maternity leave 31–50 weekdays before the expected date of delivery. Maternity allowance is paid for a period of 4 months starting from the beginning of the maternity leave.
Special maternity allowance
If you are exposed to radiation, chemical substances or contagious diseases in your work, you can stop working as soon as your pregnancy is established. You will receive special maternity allowance (erityisäitiysraha) for this time. Don’t forget to apply for special maternity allowance from Kela within four months of the day you stop working.
Special maternity allowance is not paid to unemployed mothers at all and only in certain cases to students.
Ask for more information at Kela.
You can find out about all the benefits Kela offers for families with children on Kela's website.