Legislation - Income and living conditions


Legal framework from 2021

Regulation (EU) 2019/1700 of the European Parliament and of the Council of 10 October 2019 establishing a common framework for European statistics relating to persons and households, based on data at individual level collected from samples (IESS regulation)

Additional relevant regulations 

Derogations to the IESS regulation are specified in the annex to 'Commission Implementing Decision (EU) 2020/2050'.

Beyond the IESS regulation, three legal acts cover elements common to all social surveys:

In addition for EU-SILC, the following two regulations are in place:

Modules as of 2021 

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Background information

The regulation 2019/1700 covers the following seven domains:

  1. Labour force,
  2. Income and living conditions,
  3. Health,
  4. Education and training,
  5. Use of information and communication technologies,
  6. Time use,
  7. Consumption.

Regulation 2019/1700 specifies for each domain the following key elements: the statistical population, observation units, sample frame, sample characteristics, precision requirements, topics and detailed topics, data transmission deadlines and periodicity.

The EU-SILC is a multi-purpose survey covering mainly the income and living conditions domain within the scope of the IESS regulation.

The EU-SILC survey is a key instrument to provide information required by the European Semester and the European Pillar of Social Rights, in particular on income distribution, poverty and social exclusion as well as on various topics related to living conditions and EU policies.

The European Commission specifies every year the technical items of the data set related to modules to ensure the accurate implementation of the sample survey for the income and living conditions domain.

In EU-SILC, there are three type of modules: (1) every three years, (2) every six years and (3) ad-hoc subject / policy need modules.

  1. The topics of the modules taking place every three years are 'Labour Market and Housing', 'Health' and 'Children'.
  2. The topics of the modules taking place every six years are 'Intergenerational transmission of disadvantages and Housing difficulties', 'Over-indebtedness, consumption and wealth', 'Access to services' and 'Quality of life'.
  3. Every second year starting from 2021, ad-hoc subject modules / policy need modules are included in EU-SILC. The aim of these modules is to provide timely information on specific area of interest.

Past legislations

Legal framework before 2021

Regulation (EC) No 1177/2003 of the European Parliament and of the Council of 16 June 2003 concerning Community statistics on income and living conditions (EU-SILC) from 2003 till 2020

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The following implementing regulations provided further specifications for the implementation of EU-SILC (presented by short name in chronological order):

In addition, some regulations introduced variables which were collected every four or five years, so-called ‘secondary' variables.

List of annual ad-hoc modules (presented by short name in inverse chronological order):

See also

SILC 2017 ESS Agreement on health priority (2nd priority variables), labour, over-indebtedness, consumption and wealth

SILC 2013 ESS agreement material deprivation variables

EEA Agreement

The Agreement between the European Community and the Swiss Confederation