Employment, Social Affairs & Inclusion

Slovakia - Assistance in material need

When can I apply for assistance?

The assistance in material need serves is payable to households who are not able to secure basic living conditions and cannot increase their income through their own efforts (i.e. by work, statutory entitlements). One hot meal a day, necessary clothing and dwelling are considered basic living conditions. The benefit amount varies depending on the number of household members.

Tax-financed scheme which provides for the granting of the Benefit in material need (Dávka v hmotnej núdzi) and Allowances to benefits in material need (Príspevky k dávke).

What conditions do I have to meet?

A resident (or foreigners in specific cases) in Slovakia may apply for assistance in material need provided that his/her income (along with jointly assessed individuals) is lower than the subsistence minimum (životné minimum), i.e.:

  • €199.48 per month for one adult person;
  • €139.16 per month for each jointly assessed person;
  • €91.06 per month for a dependent minor child and dependent children in material need.

The household is not considered in material need if its members do not claim all their statutory entitlements. These include, for example, maintenance for children, supplementary maintenance, maintenance for spouses, income replacement during temporary incapacity, sickness insurance benefits, pension insurance benefits, occupational injury insurance benefits, guarantee insurance benefits and unemployment benefits, entitlements arising from labour relations, service pension benefits and repeated state social benefits, except child benefit.

What benefits can I apply for and how should I exercise my rights?

The benefit in material need (dávka v hmotnej núdzi) is provided in the following amounts:

  • €61.60 per month to one person;
  • €117.20 per month to one person with 1 to 4 children;
  • €171.20 per month to one person with more than 4 children;
  • €107.10 per month to two persons without children;
  • €160.40 per month to two persons with 1 to 4 children;
  • €216.10 per month to two persons with more than 4 children.

Other benefits that you may apply for in addition to the benefit in material need include:

  • Activation allowance (Aktivačný príspevok) - €63.07 per month. Its granting is conditioned by the applicant's employment or inclusion in the register of unemployed jobseekers, as well as by increasing his/her qualification by studying while on employment and performing minor community work.
  • Housing benefit (Príspevok na bývanie) - €55.80 per month (or €89.20 per month when more persons are assessed jointly). It is preconditioned by regular payments of housing-related costs. Is granted also when applicant is accommodated in certain type of social service facility.
  • Protecting allowance (Ochranný príspevok) – has three levels. €63.07 per month if you have reached retirement age, your disability is more than 70% or you are caring for a child with long-term unfavourable health conditions; €34.69 per month if incapacity for work continues for more than 30 days; €13.50 per month for pregnant women from the 4th month of pregnancy or for single parents caring for a child up to the age of one year.
  • Allowance for a dependent child (Príspevok na nezaopatrené dieťa): €17.20 per month for each child during the period of compulsory education.

Special benefits include:

  • Special allowance (Osobitný príspevok) granted for the first 6 months in the amount of €126.14 and the second 6 months in the amount of €63.07 to a person long-term unemployed person and is now receiving an income at least equal to the minimum wage but not higher than twice the minimum monthly wage.
  • One-off benefit in material need (jednorazová dávka v hmotnej núdzi) serves for the partial reimbursement of the extraordinary expenses of household members.

Special additional assistance for households in material need:

  • Subsidies to support the development of eating habits of a child threatened by social exclusion (dotácie na podporu výchovy k stravovacím návykom dieťaťa ohrozeného sociálnym vylúčením) serve to provide for school dinners and other meals at kindergartens or basic schools.
  • Subsidies to support the development of skills related to the fulfilment of school duties of a child threatened by social exclusion (dotácie na podporu výchovy k plneniu školských povinností dieťaťa ohrozeného sociálnym vylúčením) are designated for the reimbursement of school utensils necessary for the child's education in a kindergarten or basic school.

As regards subsidies, the applicant is the founder of the education facility, a municipality or a civic association.

Applicants claiming a benefit in material need should file a written application to the local Office of Labour, Social Affairs and Family Office in the place of their permanent residence.

Jargon busters

Subsistence minimum - A person's income recognized by law, which is considered a necessary minimum for the satisfaction of basic living needs. Income up to the subsistence minimum is exempt from tax.

Required documents

Know your rights

Link to additional information provided by the European Commission:

Who do you need to contact for advice about social security?

Central Office of Labour, Social Affairs and Family (Ústredie práce, sociálnych vecí a rodiny)
Department of Assistance in Material Need and State Social Benefits
Špitálska 8, 812 67, Bratislava

Office of Labour, Social Affairs and Family (Úrad práce, sociálnych vecí a rodiny)
Unit of Citizen´s Services;
Unit of Assistance in Material Need and State Social Benefits

List of Offices of Labour, Social Affairs and Family

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