Employment, Social Affairs & Inclusion

Norway - Previous coverage abroad can count

This section provides information about what happens if you move between countries within the EEA area, or live and work in various EEA countries, and how this can affect the social security benefits you could receive from Norway

In what situation can I claim?

Different countries have different rules for social security benefits, but in accordance with EEA regulations, the social security schemes of EEA member countries must be coordinated. This means that any time you have built up accruals as a resident or employee in an EEA country must be taken into consideration when assessing your right to various social security benefits.

However, the basic principle is that you cannot be covered by the social security schemes and receive the same benefits from 2 countries at the same time.

If you are working in an EEA country, you are generally covered by the social security scheme in that country. If you are not working, you are usually a member of the social security scheme in the country in which you are resident. If you are working and living in Norway, you are therefore a member of the National Insurance Scheme.

If you have previously lived or worked in another EEA country, you may be entitled to social security benefits from that country, which can then affect your benefits in Norway. The same applies if you live in Norway and work in another EEA country, and vice versa.

What conditions do I need to meet?

The benefits that must be coordinated within the EEA area, and which can thereby affect your entitlement to Norwegian benefits, are as follows:

  • sickness benefits;
  • healthcare services;
  • benefits for parents, such as parental benefit;
  • benefits for occupational injury and occupational illness
  • benefits for disability, such as disability benefit and work assessment allowance;
  • retirement pension;
  • benefits for survivors;
  • unemployment benefits;
  • family benefits such as child benefit and cash-for-care benefits.
Families with children

If you are working in, or receiving a pension from, another EEA country, then you are covered by the social security scheme of that country. Basically, you and your children may be entitled to benefits from that country, even if none of you are living there.

In some cases, you may be entitled to benefits from several countries. In these cases, the benefits are coordinated so that you do not receive duplicated benefits, or are left without any. If the benefit from the EEA country from which you should primarily be receiving benefits is lower than the equivalent benefit that you could receive from another EEA country from which you are entitled to benefits (for example, the country in which you are resident), you may receive an additional sum to make up the difference between these two benefits. Contact NAV for information about your case.

If you are unemployed

As a general rule, you should receive unemployment benefit from the country in which you last worked. If you apply for unemployment benefit from Norway, it is a requirement that you must have had income from work in Norway prior to the unemployment. Periods of employment in other EEA countries can be added to the Norwegian period of employment and entitle you to unemployment benefit. Contact NAV for more information about your case.


If you are resident in Norway but have previously lived or worked in another EEA country, you may be entitled to a pension from that country. On the basis of information from you, NAV will contact the social security authorities in the other country. In accordance with EEA rules, pensions are calculated on the pro-rata principle. This means that your pension is paid on a proportional basis from each country in which you have accrued pension entitlements.

What am I entitled to and how can I claim?

If you move to or from Norway, this will affect your entitlement to social security benefits, and you must notify NAV of your move. NAV may also be able to provide you with more information about how the move will affect your entitlement to social security benefits, what forms you need to fill in and what information you will have to provide.

Know your rights

The links below direct you to websites that describe your legal rights, but they are not part of the EU 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: Online: https://www.nav.no/en/Home, or at your local NAV office.

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