Employment, Social Affairs & Inclusion

Norway - Sickness benefit and attendance allowance

This section provides information about who is entitled to sickness benefit (sykepenger) and attendance allowance (pleiepenger), and what conditions apply to the benefits.

In what situation can I claim?

Sickness benefit

If you are in active work, but lose your income because of injury or illness, you may be entitled to receive sickness benefit.

Attendance allowance

If you lose your income because you have to care for a child with special needs, a dying family member or person with whom you have close ties, you may be entitled to receive attendance allowance.

What conditions do I need to meet?

Sickness benefit

You must have been in work for at least 4 weeks - work in another EEA country can count.

In order to use a personal declaration, you must have worked for your employer for at least 2 months.

In order to receive sickness benefit from NAV, you must undertake to return to work as quickly as possible.

You must have a relevant sick leave certificate from a doctor (or from a physiotherapist or chiropractor if your injury or illness is due to musculoskeletal problems).

You and your employer must work together to create a 4-week plan to get you back to work. If you still cannot work after 8 weeks, you will need to get a new sick leave certificate.

For short-term absences due to illness, it is sufficient that you cannot perform the tasks in your current job, but for long-term sickness absences, an assessment must be performed to determine whether you are also unfit to perform other suitable tasks.

Sickness benefit can be paid for up to 1 year. If you have previously received sickness benefit for 1 year, you must have been fit for work for at least 26 weeks since you last received sickness benefit.

Attendance allowance

You must have been in work for the last 4 weeks - work in another EEA country can count.

Attendance allowance can be provided if you care for a child under the age of 18 who, due to illness or injury, needs constant supervision and care. If necessary, you and another caregiver can receive the allowance at the same time. If your child is mentally disabled, in need of constant supervision and suffers from a serious or potentially fatal disease or injury, there is no age limit.

You must have primary responsibility for the child's care. If the child for whom you are caring already has access to external care or nursing for significant periods of time, it is possible that you may not be entitled to attendance allowance. You may still be entitled to a reduced attendance allowance, if you receive assistance on some days of the week or for some hours of the day, via supervision or releif arrangements.

You may also receive attendance allowance if you are caring for a person with whom you have close ties, at home in the final stages of their life.

What am I entitled to and how can I claim?

Sickness benefit

You may receive sickness benefit for up to 1 year. If you are still unfit for work after this period, you may be entitled to other benefits. The first 16 days are paid by your employer. For brief absences, you may use a personal declaration (which notifies that you are ill without the need for a sick leave certificate from your doctor). If you are absent due to illness for more than 3 days, your employer is entitled to demand a sick leave certificate, unless a longer period is agreed between the employer and the worker/the workers’ union).

The sickness benefit paid by your employer amounts to:

  • the average salary of the last 3 calendar months before the first day of absence;
  • if your salary has been permanently changed during the last three months, the income is calculated from the date of the change.

After the 16 days paid by the employer, your average income from the last three months is converted to an annual income. If this annual income deviates more than 25% from the income you had in the past 12 months, the sickness benefit basis is determined on discretionary basis. Sickness benefit is equivalent to your pay, but cannot exceed 6 G annually; i.e. NOK 599 148 at the current Basic Amount. This means that NOK 49 929 per month is the maximum amount that you can receive at the current Basic Amount.

Attendance allowance

The attendance allowance is based:

  • on your average income from the last 3 calendar months before the first day of absence;
  • if your salary has been permanently changed during the last 3 months, the income is calculated from the date of the change.

Your average income from the last three full calendar months is converted to an annual income. If this annual income deviates more than 25% from the income you had in the past 12 months, the attendance allowance basis shall be determined by discretion.

Attendance allowance is equivalent to your pay, but cannot exceed 6 G annually; i.e. NOK 599 148 at the current Basic Amount. This means that NOK 49 929 per month is the maximum amount that you can receive at the current Basic Amount.

If you are caring for a close relative or a friend in the last phase of their life, you may receive attendance allowance for up to 60 days.

There is no period of employer liability with regard to attendance allowance. You must contact NAV directly in order to receive support.

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 2019, the Basic Amount is NOK 99 858, or about EUR 9 714.

Forms you may need to fill in

  • Income information for employees who wish to receive sickness benefit, parental benefit, pregnancy benefits, attendance allowance, training allowance and care benefit (in Norwegian only)
  • Information about deductions for employees who wish to receive sickness benefit, parental benefit, pregnancy benefits, attendance allowance, training allowance and care benefit (in Norwegian only)
  • Application to continue receiving sickness benefit during stays abroad

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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