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Unemployment benefits in Hungary

In what situation can I claim?

A job-seeker is a person who is registered as a job-seeker with the District Office of the Capital and County Government Office, i.e. who meets the necessary legal and other conditions enabling him/her to work (e.g. he or she does not need a work permit); citizens of the EU/EEA are regarded as job-seekers even if they do require a permit. A job-seeker cannot be a student in full-time education or a person entitled to an old-age pension, or benefits for persons with changed working capacity (megváltozott munkaképességű személyek ellátásai), and may not receive income from other activities, except for occasional work. A job-seeker has to cooperate with the District Office of the Capital and County Government Office.

What conditions do I need to meet?

A job-seeker who has worked for at least 360 days in the 3 years before becoming a job-seeker is entitled to a job-seeker benefit of 1 day’s benefit for every 10 days worked. This means that the minimum entitlement is for 36 days, and the maximum 90 days.

Job-seeker aid before pension can be granted to older job-seekers.

The unemployment benefits system comprises both active and passive benefits.

Providing information about employment and the labour market, counselling on labour, career, job search and rehabilitation, career guidance, local employment tips and job offers, occupational counselling and job replacement are the available labour market services in the framework of the active labour market policy tools.

A job-seeker can also take part in training and business start-up programmes. Moreover, there are many forms of employment support channelled through the employer – especially for disadvantaged jobseekers such as young people or disabled workers, including wage subsidies for job creation and job preservation. Passive support comprises job-seeker benefit, which is a financial benefit available to those who have lost their jobs, and job-seeker aid before pension. There is no special benefit for insured self-employed persons, who receive the same job-seeker benefit as the employees.

What am I entitled to and how can I claim?

Job-seeker benefit (Álláskeresési járadék)

The law provides for the job-seeker benefit to be paid for a maximum of 90 days, and the allowance equals 60 % of the previous average pay, but the amount cannot be higher than 100 % of the minimum wage (i.e. HUF 138,000 in 2018).

The amount of this benefit is calculated on the basis of the average pay in the four calendar quarters preceding the loss of the job. If the job-seeker has worked for more than one employer in that time, the amount of the allowance is calculated on the basis of the average pay received from all their employers. If the job-seeker’s average pay cannot be determined, the amount of the allowance is calculated on the basis of 130 % of the national minimum wage.

Job-seeker benefit stops:

  • at the request of the beneficiary;
  • if the beneficiary becomes entitled to benefits for persons with changed working capacity;
  • if the beneficiary receives income from other activities for more than 90 days, except for occasional work;
  • if the beneficiary agrees to enrol in a training programme under which he or she will receive an allowance equal to the minimum wage;
  • if the beneficiary enters full-time education;
  • or when the period of entitlement ends;
  • or if the beneficiary dies.

Job-seeker benefit should be terminated:

  • if he or she is removed from the register;
  • or if he or she does not fulfil the criteria of a job-seeker;
  • or if he or she does not comply with the obligation to appear;
  • or if he or she does not accept the appropriate job offered by the labour centre;
  • or if he or she fails to enrol in a training programme under which he or she will receive an allowance equal to the minimum wage;
  • or fails to participate in an employment-facilitating labour market programme;
  • or if he or she fails to fulfil his or her reporting obligation on pursuing gainful activity to the labour centre.

Job-seeker aid before pension (nyugdíj előtti álláskeresési segély)

It is a principle of the law that no group of unemployed persons can be less favourably treated than another. Thus job-seeker aid before pension is paid to a job-seeker who:

  • is within 5 years of reaching retirement;
  • has been receiving job-seeker benefit (álláskeresési járadék) for at least 45 days, and the period of payment of benefit comes to an end, or their job-seeker benefit was terminated due to employment and they are not entitled to job-seeker benefit again;
  • shall reach retirement age in not more than 5 years, within 3 years of the termination of the job-seeker benefit;
  • is not receiving benefit prior to retirement age (korhatár előtti ellátás), service benefit for armed forces (szolgálati járandóság), life annuity for dance artists (táncművészeti életjáradék), or transitional annuity for miners (átmeneti bányászjáradék);
  • has a sufficient contribution period for retirement (normally 15 years).

The relevant legislation stipulates that job-seeker aid before pension can be paid until the person becomes entitled to the old-age pension or to benefits for persons with changed working capacity (megváltozott munkaképességű személyek ellátása). The amount of the compensation is 40 % of the minimum wage (HUF 55,200) at the time when the application is made. If the calculation of the job-seeker benefit is based on a lower amount than the aforementioned sum, the aid will be equal to this lower amount.

The job-seeker receiving this compensation is authorised to work. Unlike the job-seeker benefit, the income from this work has no impact on the payment of job-seeker aid. Otherwise, the rules for cancellation and suspension of job-seeker’s compensation are generally the same as those for job-seeker benefit.

Know your rights

National Labour Office.

Who do you need to contact?

A person who loses his or her job must register with the competent District Office of the Capital and County Government Office. They must declare themselves as job-seekers actively looking for work and must cooperate with the competent District Office of the Capital and County Government Office.

Ministry of Finance

Pénzügyminisztérium

Budapest

József nádor tér 2-4

1051 MAGYARORSZÁG/HUNGARY

http://www.kormany.hu/hu/nemzetgazdasagi-miniszterium

Source:
European Commission and national authorities dealing with unemployment insurance.

This page was last updated on November 15, 2018.

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