How does entrepreneurship affect my daily allowance?

If you continue your previous entrepreneurial activities as an unemployed person, report the activities to the TE Office and the unemployment fund. The TE Office will determine whether it is full-time or part-time entrepreneurship. You are not entitled to daily allowance for the period of full-time entrepreneurship lasting more than two weeks.

If you start a new business while unemployed, its full-time or part-time status will not be reviewed within the first four months from the start of the entrepreneurial activities. During this time, you can claim adjusted daily allowance for the period of entrepreneurship with entrepreneurial income taken into account. If your entrepreneurship continues after the four months, the TE Office will determine whether it is full-time or part-time in nature. If your entrepreneurship is then found to be full-time, you will not be entitled to the daily allowance for its duration after this. Daily allowance can still be paid out during part-time entrepreneurship.

Read more

Part-time entrepreneur
Full-time entrepreneur
Family member of an entrepreneur
Am I an entrepreneur?

Part-time entrepreneur

If your entrepreneurship is part-time in nature or lasts less than two weeks, the income from entrepreneurial activities will be taken into account in the payment of adjusted earnings-related allowance. More information on applying for adjusted daily allowance is available here.

During part-time entrepreneurship, you can be a member of a fund for wage earners and also accrue the wage earner’s employment condition in other employment undertaken as a wage earner.

Back to top

Full-time entrepreneur

If you have started as a full-time entrepreneur, you are not entitled to earnings-related allowance for the duration of the entrepreneurship. If you want to insure yourself in case of unemployment, you should consider joining, for example, the Yrittäjäkassa (Unemployment Fund for Finnish Entrepreneurs). A full-time entrepreneur cannot become a member of a fund for wage earners.

You can retain your membership in a fund for wage earners for the so-called post-protection period of 18 months. You can also join a fund for entrepreneurs while retaining your entitlement to daily allowance in accordance with the employment condition you have accrued as a wage earner for the post-protection period. The post-protection ceases when you fulfil the entrepreneur’s employment condition or have been an entrepreneur for more than 18 months. The entrepreneur’s employment condition is not accrued in a fund for wage earners.

If you have shifted from an entrepreneur to a wage earner, you can claim daily allowance for entrepreneurs during unemployment. This post-protection for entrepreneurs ceases when you fulfil the wage earner’s employment condition. You can be a member of a fund for entrepreneurs or for wage earners during the post-protection period, but the wage earner’s employment condition is not accrued in a fund for entrepreneurs.

Back to top

Family member of an entrepreneur

A family member of an entrepreneur, who does not own any part of the business, can insure him/herself in a wage earner’s unemployment fund in case of unemployment. Mere employment in a company owned by a family member is not deemed as entrepreneurship.

Earnings-related allowance is, however, granted only after the member has worked for 52 weeks in the family business. Working weeks have to fulfil the employment condition and the family member must have been a member of a wage-earners unemployment fund during the employment. Work for another employer will fulfil the employment condition after 26 weeks of work. Work in the family business and for another employer cannot be combined in order to fulfil the employment condition.

In addition, the family member must not have owned any part of the business for 12 months before the unemployment period.

Back to top

Am I an entrepreneur?

Work which has not been undertaken as a wage earner in an employment relationship is considered entrepreneurship in terms of unemployment security. Operating as a private entrepreneur, agriculture or forestry, operating through an invoicing company or charging a fee for an assignment, for example, may be considered entrepreneurial activities.

In unemployment security, you may be considered an entrepreneur if you have YEL or MYEL insurance, and

  • you work as an entrepreneur, a partner in a partnership or an active partner in a limited partnership; or
  • you own more than 30% alone or 50% with your family members (or family) of a limited company where you work in an executive position.

You are also considered an entrepreneur when you are covered by the Employees Pensions Act (TyEL) if

  • you work in an executive position in a limited company of which you own at least 15% alone or at least 30% with your family members (or family); or
  • you work in a limited company of which your family owns (or they together own) at least 50%.

The family members of an entrepreneur include the spouse and partner, children and grandchildren living in the same household as well as their own parents and grandparents. Executive positions include the company’s managing director and members of the Board of Directors.

Back to top