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Here we have collected the most frequently asked questions and answers about MYEL pension insurance and Mela security. If you do not find the answer to your question, please do not hesitate to contact us for assistance.

Applying for insurance

Do I have to apply for MYEL insurance even if I am staying in Finland only on a temporary basis?

Grants awarded from Finland in general must be insured, even if the grant recipient comes to work in Finland only on a temporary basis. You can read more about insurance conditions here: General information about MYEL pension insurance

If you are uncertain about whether you have an insurance obligation, send an insurance application to Mela and we will clarify the matter for you.

Further information about insurance for persons coming to work in Finland on a grant is available here: Foreign recipients of Finnish grants

Deducting expenses

How do I know if I can deduct my expenses from the grant funds?

The right to deduct expenses is determined by the body that awarded the grant. Refer to the original decision or enquire from the body that awarded the grant.

Can I deduct expenses if my insurance policy is already valid?

No. Expenses must be deducted already on the insurance application or within the 30-day period during which changes can be made to your application. Once insurance has been issued on the basis of your calculated annual earnings, the amount of these earnings remains valid for the entire insurance period and the level of insurance cover cannot be changed after the 30-day period.

Is there a limit to the amount of expenses I can deduct?

If your grant has been awarded to fund your work and related expenses without a set limit, Mela can accept expenses amounting to no more than half the total amount of your grant. The body that awarded the grant may further limit the amount of expenses that can be deducted, in which case the same limit is applied by Mela.

Further information about expenses that can be deducted and the affect of these deductions on your insurance cover is available here: Expense deductions

Determination of the insurance period and notification of the work period

Do I have to apply for insurance if my grant work is performed in multiple periods lasting less than four months each?

Yes. If the grant has been awarded for work lasting at least four months, you should apply for insurance as soon as your grant work begins. In principle, Mela issues insurance on a one-time basis, even if your grant work is performed in multiple shorter periods.

Insurance can be issued also for multiple periods if the conditions for interrupting your grant work are fulfilled. Further information about suspending your insurance is available here: Changes to your grant work

What work period should I write in the insurance application if I work only part-time on my grant?

In your insurance application, you should always write the working period that is stated in your grant decision. Unless part-time work has not been agreed with the body that awarded the grant, Mela always issues insurance for the work period notified in the decision.

Multiple grants or scholarships

I have been awarded multiple grants. Do I need to fill in a separate insurance application for each grant?

Yes. Each grant is handled as a separate insurance case, so each one requires a separate insurance application.

Is it possible to have valid insurance simultaneously for multiple grants?

Yes. Multiple MYEL pension insurance policies can be valid simultaneously.

Annual earnings

What is meant by annual earnings, i.e. MYEL earnings?

Annual earnings (MYEL earnings) refer to the amount of your grant calculated on an annual basis. In other words, the amount of your annual earnings is not necessarily the same as the amount of your grant. Your earnings are calculated on an annual basis even if your grant work lasts for less than one year. Further information is available here: Annual (MYEL) earnings

Insurance premiums

Detailed information about how insurance premiums are calculated can be found in the section Premiums.

How many times a year am I invoiced?

Grant recipients are generally invoiced 4 times a year.

How should I provide my bank account number to Mela?

You can use Mela’s e-services (in Finnish and Swedish) to notify Mela about a new bank account number or to change your bank account number. Remember to include both the BIC and IBAN codes under bank details.

You can also notify Mela about a new bank account number or change your bank account number in writing. Send the written notification by post to the Farmer’s Social Insurance Institution Mela, P.O. Box 16, FI-02101 Espoo.

Remember to include the following details:

  • Contact information
  • Date of birth
  • IBAN account number and your bank’s BIC
  • Signature of the insured person or pension recipient.

If the person signing the notification is someone other than the insured person or pension recipient, include a power of attorney or a copy of the decision of trusteeship.

Can I prolong the payment period for my insurance premiums?

Yes, you can call Mela’s customer service and discuss prolonging the payment period within certain limits. It is important that you contact customer service before the due date has already expired.

Can I pay my insurance premiums in advance?

Yes, you can pay your insurance premiums in advance without a reference number. The account number you should use is FI45 5721 1510 0074 17 (IBAN), OKOYFIHH (BIC). Remember to include your name, date of birth and the text “Advance payment for 20XX” with the appropriate year in the message field.

What do I do if I lose the invoice?

You can view your invoicing status using Mela’s e-services (in Finnish and Swedish). You can also call our customer service and we can send you a copy of the invoice by post or e-mail.

If I don’t pay an invoice on time, will I receive a reminder?

Yes, a payment reminder will be sent around one month after the original invoice was due. The reminder includes the due date for the original invoice and a new due date by which the invoice has to be paid.

Do I have to pay interest if I don’t pay an invoice on time?

If an invoice is not paid, we will send a payment reminder and charge interest for late payment. The annual interest for late payment is currently 4% for the period 1.6.2016–31.12.2020.

Can I pay an invoice in instalments?

Yes, you can pay an invoice in instalments according to the payment details included on the invoice.

If you want to pay off the invoice after the original due date, you have to agree a payment schedule in advance with Mela’s customer service. We will prepare a payment schedule for you and send you a payment reminder when the new due date is approaching with details of the outstanding amount plus interest that has accrued since the original due date.

Will it cost me extra to change the due date on my invoice?

Changes to the due date must always be agreed separately. Interest begins to accrue immediately after the original due date, but otherwise there are no charges for changing the due date.

What is the maximum payment period for an invoice?

Payment extensions are considered on a case-by-case basis. The maximum payment period is 2 years from the original due date. However, you should try to take care of all outstanding payments before the following year’s invoices become due.

When do recovery proceedings begin for unpaid invoices?

Mela’s invoices are directly enforceable, so recovery proceedings may be initiated after the due date. Customers are always sent a payment reminder before recovery proceedings are undertaken. Recovery proceedings can be delayed by requesting an extension. Invoices that have been granted an extension are subject to recovery proceedings after the new due date.

What should I do if recovery proceedings have been initiated?

If recovery proceedings have been initiated due to an unpaid invoice, you must contact the enforcement authorities to make arrangements for paying. If you have requested an extension for payment of an invoice but recovery proceedings have been initiated before the agreed due date, contact Mela’s customer service.

When are unpaid invoices subject to a payment default entry?

Mela’s receivables are eligible for enforcement, meaning that recovery proceedings can be initiated after the due date. However, a payment default entry is made only if the enforcement authorities declare the debtor insolvent and the debt is not recovered. In other words, the initiation of recovery proceedings by Mela does not mean that you are subject to a payment default entry.  Only the enforcement authorities can make payment default entries.

Mela sickness allowance

I have fallen ill, but I don’t yet have MYEL insurance. Is it possible to receive a Mela sickness allowance?

Yes, as long as your insurance application has already been submitted and is being processed by Mela. Your MYEL insurance must be valid or your application pending at the time you fall ill.

How can I claim Mela sickness allowance?

You can claim Mela sickness allowance in the following ways:

A medical certificate is always required when claiming Mela sickness allowance. The physician should also be notified that Mela sickness allowance is also paid for weekends. You can submit medical certificates to Mela electronically using our e-services (Send attachments).

Submit your claim for Mela sickness allowance within 6 months of the onset of your work incapacity.

Is a medical certificate signed by a nurse sufficient for claiming Mela sickness allowance?

Yes, at the start of your illness, it is sufficient to supply us with a medical certificate signed by a nurse explaining your work incapacity.

I am also an entrepreneur insured under the YEL scheme. How do I claim Mela sickness allowance?

If you have YEL insurance for other entrepreneurial activities, you should always claim sickness allowance directly from Kela. When you fill in the Kela claim form, remember to check the box marked “Allowance for persons insured under MYEL during the waiting period”.

When calculating your sickness allowance, Kela also takes into consideration income from other entrepreneurial activities (insured under the YEL scheme), as well as income from regular employment.

When should I claim sickness allowance directly from Kela?

The length of your sick leave determines whether you have to claim sickness allowance from Mela or Kela. You should claim sickness allowance from Kela if the length of your sick leave after the first day of illness is more than 9 working days.

When you fill in the Kela claim form, remember to check the box marked “Allowance for persons insured under MYEL during the waiting period”. Kela will then provide Mela with the information about your sick leave required for payment of your Mela sickness allowance.

I have not taken out an insurance under the YEL scheme, i.e. the Self-employed Person´s Pensions Act, however, I have certain earnings beside those insured through MYEL. My sickness leave does not exceed Kela´s amount of days of personal liability. Should I claim for Kela´s sickness allowance when encouraged to do regarding the earnings under the YEL-scheme?

The Mela sickness allowance is based on your MYEL-earnings and represents 1/514 from this per day. Employment related earnings are not considered when calculating the Mela sickness allowance and therefore the claim for sickness allowance must be submitted directly to Mela. Remember that a waiting time of 4 days is applied for the Mela sickness allowance (the day of the visit to a physician + 3 days). We recommend that you contact either your employer or Kela in regard of your employment related earnings.

Accident compensation

Can I submit a claim form electronically?

Yes, you can submit a claim form electronically using Mela’s e-services (in Finnish and Swedish). Remember to notify Mela about any occupational accident or disease within 60 days of the accident or onset of the disease.

Are copies of receipts enough for Mela?

Yes, you can submit copies of receipts, also as attachments using our e-services (Lähetä liitteitä, Send attachments).

Can I notify Mela about an occupational accident or disease after 60 days?

Yes, you can fill in a claim form also after 60 days, but remember to include on the form an explanation for the delay. Any claims that are submitted after the 60-day deadline are evaluated by Mela to clarify the reasons for the delay and whether denying compensation is reasonable in the circumstances.

Taxation of accident compensation

I think too much tax has been withheld from my allowance/accident pension – what should I do?

You can request a new card for your accident benefits online from the Finnish Tax Administration website ( You will need to provide information about all accident benefits, pensions and other income that has been paid to you so that the correct tax percentage rate can be calculated.

The new tax card will be valid as soon as it is issued to you. If you want the new tax card to apply also to loss of income compensation that is paid retrospectively, remember to request this from the Finnish Tax Administration.

If the new tax card is applied retrospectively, you will be refunded for any excess taxes that have been paid on your accident benefits during the retrospective period.

New tax cards should always be submitted on paper. However, increases in the tax percentage can be notified by phone.

Please note that, according to the guidelines of the Finnish Tax Administration, the withholding tax percentage rate for allowances, rehabilitation compensation amounting to the same, and loss of income compensation during the examination period paid on the basis of voluntary insurance policies is always 50 percent.

How is the withholding tax percentage rate for accident benefits calculated?

The minimum withholding tax percentage rate issued by the Finnish Tax Administration is 25 percent for mandatory insurance policyholders. In other cases, the withholding tax percentage rate is 40 percent.

According to the guidelines of the Finnish Tax Administration, the withholding tax percentage rate for allowances, rehabilitation compensation amounting to the same, and loss of income compensation during the examination period paid on the basis of voluntary insurance policies is always 50 percent.

If the applicable periods for loss of income compensation are in years preceding the payment year, the withholding tax percentage rate in accordance with the guidelines of the Finnish Tax Administration is always 50 percent.

Payment commitments

How can I obtain a payment commitment for an MRI or surgery by a private healthcare provider?

The physician treating you must always request a payment commitment from Mela for any medical examination or procedure costing 320 euros or more (2020).

If the physician treating you recommends a medical examination or procedure that requires and is eligible for a payment commitment, explain that you have occupational accident and disease insurance issued by Mela. The physician or treatment facility will then send a request to Mela for a payment commitment together with the required medical records.

How can I obtain a payment commitment for medications prescribed for treating an occupational disease?

In order to process your payment commitment, we need a copy of the prescription. You can submit a copy to Mela electronically using our e-services (Lähetä liitteitä, Send attachments).

Working as an entrepreneur or employee alongside grant or scholarship work

Do I have to apply for MYEL insurance if I am working as an entrepreneur or employee alongside my grant work?

Yes. Having paid employment or YEL insurance as a self-employed person does not affect your insurance obligation for grant work. The Finnish pension system is based on the idea that pension is accrued for all paid labour. For example, if you work as an entrepreneur alongside your grant work, you will accrue pension simultaneously for both your grant work and your work as an entrepreneur.

Taxation of a grant or scholarship

How does MYEL insurance affect my taxation?

MYEL and MATA insurance premiums are tax deductible. Insurance premiums can be deducted for the tax year in which the premiums are paid. The amount of premiums that you have paid are reported automatically to the tax authorities by Mela.

If you have any other questions concerning tax issues, you should contact the Finnish Tax Administration directly.

Customer service in English

Is it possible to receive my insurance decision in English?

Unfortunately, Mela does not issue insurance decisions in English. However, if you are an English-speaker, your insurance decision will come with a cover letter in English containing basic information about the decision and instructions for any possible further measures.

Is it possible to get customer service from Mela in English?

Yes, Mela also provides customer service in English. You can send any questions you may have using our secure e-mail service on the Mela website. In most cases, you should select ‘Insurance matters’ as the recipient of the message. You can also contact our customer service by phone, in which case your call will be forwarded to one of our English-language staff members.


How can I appeal an insurance decision?

If you would like to appeal an insurance decision, instructions for filing an appeal can be found on the reverse side of your insurance decision.

Further information about appeals can be found here: Appeals

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