Labor law

Working during a longer period of illness is now allowed, if one feels up to it

Eliis Talisainen
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On 16 April 2024, Parliament adopted legislation allowing those on sick leave for extended periods to continue working under adapted conditions. Up to now, those on sick leave were not allowed to work or to earn income subject to social tax while they were excused from work. But now the system will change so that employees can work under adapted conditions after they have been on sick leave for 60 days.

Adapted conditions include, for example, working part-time or fulfilling lighter duties of employment. Working under adapted conditions does not keep employees from accessing labour market services or receiving compensation from the Health Insurance Fund. 

The amendment is estimated to affect about 17,000 employees a year, of whom about 30% are expected to take the opportunity to work while on sick leave. 

The amendment will also benefit parents of sick children who will be granted a certificate for compensation of care with a duration of 60 days no matter what the child’s diagnosis. In the past, this type of compensation for care was only for nursing of children living with cancer. This will give families a much greater sense of security.

The amendments will allow severely ill people to continue participating in the workforce and not being sidelined indefinitely. Today’s employment culture is largely characterized by flexibility and the new amendment is a good example of Parliament contributing to making this possible.

The introduction of the changes amended the Health Insurance Act and other legislation related to the matter. The legislation entered into force on 15 May 2024.