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Kela to pay out compensation for benefit payment delays

Kela says it will pay compensation of 25-150 euros for delays paying out income support benefits. Early this year the income support system was transferred from municipalities to the Social Insurance Institution (Kela). The institution was overrun with applications, causing a backlog in support payments.

Kelan logo ulkona toimitilan seinässä kuvattuna alaviistosta.
Kela says it is back on track with its income support system.

The Finnish Social Insurance Institution (Kela) announced Tuesday that it will be compensating its customers for severe delays in paying out income support. Kela says that the size of the compensation will vary between 25 and 150 euros, depending on how late the payments were in each case.

The compensation will be transferred directly to the accounts of the people affected, and no application for the sum is necessary.

On Tuesday Parliamentary Ombudsman Jussi Pajuoja called on Kela to make amends for the spate of delays, which were caused early this year by income support services being transferred from municipalities to the Institution.

Kela will pay compensation for a total of some 146,000 delayed support decisions, all of which were positive decisions to begin with.

The largest reimbursement sum of 150 euros will be paid to those whose decisions were more than three weeks overdue.

"The delay was 1-5 working days for 76 percent of customers," Kela writes in its release.

Ombudsman Pajuoja received more than 200 complaints relating to the payment jam.

Kela says that applications will now be handled within the maximum legal limit of 7 days. Last week Kela applications were handled in 4.4 working days on average.

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