Employment, Social Affairs & Inclusion

Norway - Benefits for pregnancy, birth and adoption

In what situation can I claim?

Pregnancy benefits (svangerskapspenger)

If you are unable to continue working because your work may cause harm to the foetus and yourself, you may be entitled to pregnancy benefits.

Parental benefit (foreldrepenger)

If you are expecting a child through birth or adoption, and have been in work for at least 6 out of the last 10 months, you may be entitled to parental benefit.

Lump-sum grant (engangsstønad ved fødsel og adopsjon)

If you are a woman and have not earned the right to parental benefit, you may be entitled to a lump-sum grant.

What conditions do I need to meet?

Pregnancy benefits

Pregnancy benefits can be granted if you are unable to work because of a risk to the foetus or your own health. For example, your work may be physically demanding or stressful, or you may work with chemical substances or with dangerous tools. You must document this with a doctor's certificate or a statement from your midwife.

You must provide documentation showing that your employer is unable to allocate you more suitable tasks. (Use the attached form for alternative/adjusted work due to pregnancy - available in Norwegian only - to be completed by your employer).

Parental benefit

You must have been receiving a pensionable income for at least 6 out of the last 10 months. Your income on an annual basis must have been the equivalent of at least 0.5 G (Basic Amount), that is NOK 46 817 as of 1 May 2017.

Periods of sickness benefit, work assessment allowance, parental benefit, etc. count towards occupational activity.

Lump-sum grant for birth or adoption

A lump-sum grant is paid out to women who have a child but who have not earned the right to parental benefit.

What am I entitled to and how can I claim?

Pregnancy benefits

These are calculated in the same way as sickness benefit. The maximum benefit is equivalent to 6 G annually, regardless of whether your income is higher; this is NOK 561 804 using the current Basic Amount.

You can receive pregnancy benefits from the point in your pregnancy at which you must stop working, up to three weeks prior to the birth.

Read more about pregnancy benefits and how to apply for them here.

Parental benefit

The parental benefit period is 49 weeks with 100% coverage or 59 weeks with 80% coverage. Parental benefit is calculated in the same way as sickness benefit. The maximum benefit is equivalent to 6 G annually, regardless of whether your income is higher.

For births or adoptions after 1 July 2014, the maternal quota and paternal quota are 10 weeks each. There are 26 shared weeks, which the parents decide how to distribute (36 weeks if the parents have chosen to receive 80% coverage). The three weeks before the birth are reserved for the mother (these are not part of the maternal quota). These 3 weeks do not apply to adoptions, meaning that in such cases, the total period comes to 46 or 56 weeks.

If the father wishes to receive parental benefit that does not come under the paternal quota, the mother must be in gainful activity, e.g. working or studying.

You can use this calculator to calculate roughly how much parental benefit you will receive (in Norwegian only).

Employees are entitled to holiday pay on the basis of the first 12 weeks of parental benefit (15 weeks if you have chosen 80%), while freelancers and self-employed workers will not receive holiday pay.

Generally speaking, only one parent can receive the full amount of parental benefit at any one time. Under certain conditions, you may receive parental benefit until the child is 3 years old.

Read more about combining work and parental benefit here.

Both parents must submit a written application to NAV in order to receive parental benefit.

Lump-sum grant in the event of birth or adoption

In 2018, the lump-sum grant is NOK 63 140 per child.

You must submit a written application to NAV in order to receive this grant. Use either the application for a lump-sum grant upon a birth or the application for a lump-sum grant upon an adoption.

Jargon busters

  • G: Abbreviation for National Insurance Basic Amount (see Basic Amount below). 1 G = 1 x Basic Amount, 2 G = 2 x Basic Amount, etc.;
  • Basic Amount: A standard amount that is used to calculate benefits and pensions, and which is set on 1 May each year. As of 1 May 2017, the Basic Amount is NOK 93 634, or about EUR 10 500.

Know your rights

The links below direct you to websites that describe your legal rights, but they are not part of the European Commission's websites. The Commission is  therefore not responsible for the content:

The Commission's publications and websites:

Who do you need to contact?

NAV: Via NAV's website https://www.nav.no/en/Home, or at your local NAV office.

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