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Registering with the Employment and Economic Development
Office (TE Office)

You should register as an unemployed jobseeker
on the date on which your employment ends or a lay-off begins. You can find
contact information for the Employment and Economic Development Offices (TE
Offices) and a link to the electronic services for online registration at If you need help in using the online services of the Labour
Administration, please call the national telephone service Jobline (0295 020
700). When registering as a jobseeker, you should mention that you are a member
of the Teachers’ Unemployment Fund. 

An unemployed jobseeker must accept any employment
offered by the TE Office that corresponds to their professional skills and
working ability. If you refuse, a suspension period during which you will not
receive any unemployment allowance may be imposed upon you.

Membership and employment

You may be entitled to an earnings-related
unemployment allowance if you have been insured with an unemployment fund for
at least 26 weeks preceding the termination of your employment, and you have
fulfilled the condition regarding previous employment during your membership
with the fund. The condition for previous employment is met if you have been in
paid employment that is subject to
unemployment insurance for a minimum of 26 calendar weeks in the 28 months
immediately preceding your unemployment, and your working hours have been at least 18 hours per week (see the
exceptions for the teaching sector below) and you have received wages or salary in accordance with the
relevant collective agreement. 

Your employment need not be continuous or with
a single employer to meet the condition regarding previous employment (26
calendar weeks). Even shorter periods of substitute employment can count
towards fulfilment of the employment condition. Each calendar week during your
fund membership and the period of review in which you are employed for the
required amount of hours counts towards the employment condition. 

In some cases, the entitlement to an allowance
requires that both the number of weeks of employment and the duration of
membership is longer than described above. If your last week in employment was
before 31 December 2013, you can find more information relevant to your
situation on our website.

Special features of the
education sector

In the education sector, the condition for
previous employment is met with weeks during which your working hours were at
least half of the lowest weekly hours of a full-time hourly teacher in the
relevant education sector (e.g. 8 h in comprehensive school and upper secondary
school). The education sector refers to
teaching at educational institutions
. The main rule of 18 h per week
applies to kindergarten teachers. In education sectors where there are no
full-time hourly teachers, the required working hours are 8 h per week. 

How are the working hours

If you
are a teacher with hourly pay
, your
actual working hours are counted. In order to determine whether you meet the
condition for previous employment, we will need a weekly working hours report
filled in by your employer. The form used for this can be printed out from the
fund’s website. The weekly working hours report shows the number of weeks you
have worked that qualify for the employment condition. If you are a teacher with a monthly salary, you will be considered
as working the number of hours per week on which your monthly salary is based. If your working hours are calculated on a
yearly basis
, the hours are converted into weekly working hours by division
(the divisor depends on the collective agreement sector).

examples of work that counts towards meeting the employment condition

Example: NN works part-time at two educational
institutions. At one institution, the working hours are 5 hours per week, and
at the other, 3 hours per week. As the teaching hours amount to 8 hours per
week, these jobs count towards the fulfilment of NN’s employment

Example: NN is working as a substitute
classroom teacher. The most recent substitute period lasts from 12 January to
30 May 2015, at total of 20 weeks. As NN has also acted as a substitute
classroom teacher from 6 October to 7 December 2014, a total of 9 calendar
weeks, the condition regarding previous employment is met. This is because the
total number of working weeks during fund membership is 29, more than the
required 26 weeks. 

What if I don’t have a
sufficient number of working weeks?

You can only join the fund if you are employed
in the sector that the fund represents, but once you are a member, any paid
employment counts towards the employment condition. Therefore, if you have not
met the employment condition during your membership by the start of your
unemployment or layoff, you can
accumulate the required working weeks in paid employment in a sector other than
. Before you meet the employment condition, you can contact Kela to
check your eligibility for a basic unemployment allowance or labour market

Note that self-employment cannot be not
counted towards the employment condition. You may be considered to be self-employed
or working as an entrepreneur if you work for a company owned by your spouse,
for example.

Extending the review period

The 28-month review period for meeting the
condition regarding previous employment may be extended by a maximum of seven years for an acceptable
. Acceptable reasons for the extension include full-time studies,
sickness or maternity leave and military service. Employment during your
studies also counts towards the employment condition if you joined the fund
while working as a substitute teacher. 

Facts to take into account
concerning membership and the employment condition

If you were on family leave or withdrawn from the labour market for other reasons
before registering as an unemployed jobseeker, you may still be able to meet
the condition regarding previous employment or continue to be entitled to an
unemployment allowance that you qualified for earlier. However, if your last
employment was before 30 December 2013, you must meet higher conditions
regarding membership and previous employment. Further information is available
on our website. 

If you have been a member of the Teachers’
Unemployment Fund for less than 26 weeks but were a member of another
unemployment fund immediately prior to this, it may be possible to take into
account your membership in the previous
when assessing your membership period and, hence, whether you meet the
employment condition. This can be done if you have resigned from the previous
fund yourself and 
• there is no gap between the end of the
previous membership and the start of your membership in the Teachers’
Unemployment Fund, or
• the ending date of the previous membership
and the starting date of your membership in the Teachers’ Unemployment Fund are
no more than one month apart (the period between the memberships does not count
towards fulfilling the membership condition, and any employment during this
period does not count towards fulfilling the employment condition).

the name of your
previous unemployment fund in your allowance application. 

Waiting period 

Unemployment allowance can only be paid after
the waiting period. The waiting period
equals five full working days (Monday to Friday) on which you have been
registered as an unemployed jobseeker with the TE Office.
. The waiting
period must accrue during eight consecutive calendar weeks. 

Holiday compensation and
holiday bonus

Holiday compensation paid on the basis of the
termination of full-time employment
or a holiday bonus does not affect the date from which an earnings-related
allowance can start to be paid. On the other hand, if you receive holiday pay
or holiday compensation for holidays that you have not taken on the basis of part-time employment or employment
lasting no more than two weeks, the compensation (as well as the holiday bonus)
may be treated in the adjustment of the allowance as income that decreases your

Amount of earnings-related

Do you want to know how much your daily
allowance would be? You can calculate an estimate
of your earnings-related allowance
using the calculator on the website of the
Teachers’ Unemployment Fund, for example. The allowance is calculated on the
basis of your established pay subject to withholding tax for the entire period
that counts towards the condition regarding previous employment. If your
employment has been part-time, the actual pay is used as the basis for the

you already received an earnings-related allowance? 

If you received an earnings-related allowance
in the summer of 2014 or at the turn of the year, re-fulfilment of the
condition for previous employment does not necessarily mean that the
earnings-related allowance in the summer of 2015 would be based on your income
immediately preceding the start of your unemployment. If the amount of the
allowance remains the same, there is usually no waiting period. You can find
additional information on our website regarding the circumstances in which the
waiting period is imposed and the amount of the allowance is

Have you worked for several
employers at the same time?

When investigating the fulfilment of the
employment condition and determining the amount of the allowance, the
unemployment fund can add up work performed for different employers. This also
applies to cases in which only a part of the work is teaching and the rest is
other work. Be sure to report all your employment and payment details for the
required 26 calendar weeks in your application.

How to apply for
earnings-related allowance

You can print out an application form for
sending by post from our website. You can also apply for the allowance online
via Openetti. The link to the online service is also available on our
website. In addition to submitting the first application for an
earnings-related allowance, you can also use Openetti to submit follow-up
applications as well as individual attachments. Compared to sending a
traditional paper form, the main advantage of Openetti is speed.

the paper or online form according to the instructions provided and enclose the
clarifications specified in the instructions on the form.
An incomplete application and missing attachments will delay the
processing of the application, as the application will need to be returned for
completion or we will need to request additional information. 

should submit the application and its attachments to the Teachers’ Unemployment
(not the trade union or
the TE Office). If you have not yet been a member for 26 weeks and you know
that your employment condition has not been met during your membership, you can
apply for a basic allowance or labour market subsidy directly from the Social
Insurance Institution, Kela.

allowance is applied for retroactively, i.e. for time passed
. However, it must be claimed within three months from the date on which its payment should
start. An application submitted for a longer period retroactively will be
considered as having expired. Send the first application to the fund when your
unemployment has lasted at least two full calendar weeks, ending on a Sunday.

If your unemployment

* If you are completely unemployed, always fill in the
application for four full calendar weeks (Mon–Sun) or one calendar month at a
* If you accept
a full-time job lasting no more than two weeks while unemployed, the
application rhythm of your allowance applications will not change. Fill in the
application as if fully unemployed, in periods of four calendar weeks or full
calendar months.
* If you work
part-time or you have income from a secondary occupation such as farming or
business activities, fill in the allowance application periods of full calendar

Attachments to the

Based on the application and its attachments, the unemployment
fund will determine whether you are entitled to an earnings-related
unemployment allowance and calculate the level of your allowance. Learn about the attachments required for
allowance applications on the fund’s website
(Application attachments). You should especially check
whether you need to request a weekly working hours report from your employer for
the hours you have worked. You can print out the form for the employer from our

If the application does not contain the
required information or attachments, we will request that you provide the
additional information for the application. Failure to submit the required
information will delay payment of the allowance and may lead to rejection of
the allowance application. 

Processing the application

The unemployment fund will issue a written decision on your
allowance and pay your allowance to the bank account you specified on the
application. We will send a written payment notice for each payment,
accompanied by a follow-up application form that you can use to claim allowance
if your unemployment continues. You can
send follow-up applications for the following four calendar weeks of calendar
months to the unemployment fund even if you have not yet received a decision on
your first application.
In this case, you can use the same application form
as for the first application. 

Inform us of any changes

You should immediately inform the unemployment fund of any
changes in your circumstances during your unemployment period. Matters to be
reported include employment, studies, sick leave, a new social benefit,
business activities, pay for a notice period or other income. The TE Office
will also need to be informed of any changes in your situation. 

Remember to pay your union

Remember to pay your union dues during unemployment. The
unemployment fund will not withhold the union dues from your earnings-related
allowance. In membership payment issues, OAJ
are served by the OAJ member registry, tel. 020 748 9790,

Other issues to keep in mind

Keep your job search valid as required by the TE Office.
The unemployment fund cannot pay allowances for a period in which your job
search was not valid. 

sure to ask the TE Office
to check whether you are
covered by change security. It may also be advisable to prepare an employment
plan; you can ask for more information about this at the TE Office when you
register with them. 

Do you have a place of study?

If you have the right to study, you must inform the TE Office
of this, as it may affect your eligibility for unemployment allowance. Many of
our members have had their studies approved as a so-called employment promotion
measure. This means that the studies are supported by paying a higher
earnings-related allowance than usual for the duration of unemployment. The
support of studies as an employment promotion measure requires that an
employment plan has been drawn up in which these studies are included. 

Are you engaged in
entrepreneurial activities?

You must also inform the TE
Office of any entrepreneurial activities,
as this may have an effect on your eligibility for an unemployment

Allow time for application

In the summer, the number of applications to
the Teachers’ Unemployment Fund almost doubles compared to the winter. Receiving
thousands of applications within a short period will affect the processing

In the summer, the processing of a first
application at the Teachers’ Unemployment Fund will begin within one month of
its arrival. This also applies to all the applicants who last received an
unemployment allowance in the summer of 2014 or during the Christmas break
2014–2015. If the application or its attachments are incomplete, additional
information will be requested before processing, delaying the time of payment.
Any required additional information will be requested by mail or via

information for the unemployment fund

Teachers’ Unemployment Fund 
Street and mail address: Pasilankatu 4 B,
00240 Helsinki
Telephone service:
(09) 2294 4100 
Check the service hours from our website!
fax (09) 141 549
Email: (our secure email