What to do if the coronavirus affects your rehabilitation programme, cash rehabilitation benefit or being on disability pension

Updated 8 November 2020:

The recommendation issued by the Finnish Centre for Pensions concerning coronavirus is no longer valid as of 31 August 2020, and we now apply general recommendations to vocational rehabilitation. Therefore, the instructions provided below are no longer valid. You can view the updated instructions in the recent news release.

In this exceptional situation, we will act as flexibly as possible and take the customer’s overall situation into consideration. We will update our guidance as necessary. Please follow the news.

We are requesting our customers in vocational rehabilitation to contact our rehabilitation services in the following situations:

  • Your rehabilitation programme (work trial, job coaching, training) has begun and is suspended due to the coronavirus epidemic for over a month or is completely stopped.
  • You cannot start your rehabilitation programme due to the coronavirus.
  • Your studies or apprenticeship training are completely interrupted or your graduation is at risk of being postponed due to the coronavirus.

We request our customers who are on cash rehabilitation benefit (full/partial) to contact

  • us well in advance of the expiry of the cash rehabilitation benefit if it is not possible to obtain a Medical Statement B due to the exceptional circumstances.

You can easily get in touch with us via our online service: Varma.fi > Log in > Messages and attachments. You can also contact us in all insurance, pension and rehabilitation matters by phone on weekdays from 8 am to 5 pm by calling 010 192 100 (when calling from outside Finland +358 10 192 100).

General principles and instructions for vocational rehabilitation

  • If your rehabilitation programme is suspended for over a month due to quarantine, layoff or you need to care for a child due to the closure of schools and day care centres, we will suspend the payment of the benefit associated with the rehabilitation programme.
  • You can apply for the Kela communicable disease allowance if your rehabilitation programme is stopped completely or suspended for over a month due to quarantine.
  • If your rehabilitation programme does not start due to layoff, for example, we are not able to pay rehabilitation benefits. We will correct the decision with the schedule for the new rehabilitation programme you have reported. If the start date of your rehabilitation programme is still open, submit a new rehabilitation plan via our eServices once you know the schedule
  • If a recipient of a rehabilitation allowance (rehabilitation allowance or rehabilitation increment) is ordered to work on account of the Emergency Powers Act being in force (e.g. a nursing student who receives rehabilitation allowance), related earnings have no impact on the payment of rehabilitation benefits when rehabilitation continues as planned. Even if the income limit of the rehabilitation benefit recipient is exceeded during the work order, these earnings are not taken into consideration when monitoring earnings. The payment of the benefit will therefore continue in the normal way.

Instructions for those studying while in rehabilitation

Advance your studies through distance learning, for example, if

  • you are studying on vocational rehabilitation benefit and your education institution is closed due to the coronavirus
  • the practical training associated with your studies will not take place due to the coronavirus.

If the on-the-job learning place for your apprenticeship training cannot arrange work due to the coronavirus, please first contact your apprenticeship office. Find out if your studies can be advanced via theoretical studies, for example.

General principles and instructions for cash rehabilitation benefit and disability pension

  • If you are applying for an extension to your cash rehabilitation benefit, submit your new Medical Statement B well in advance of the expiry of your current cash rehabilitation benefit via the Messages and attachments page in our eServices. A new application is not required.
  • If you are on disability pension granted until further notice or for a fixed term (full pension or partial disability pension) and you are ordered to work under the Emergency Powers Act, the payment of your pension will continue in the normal way. Earnings gained from this kind of work have no impact on your right to disability pension or the payment of disability pension. Even if the income limit of the disability pension was exceeded during the work order, these earnings are not taken into consideration when monitoring earnings.

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