In what situation can I claim?
Family members of the deceased insured person are entitled to a survivor's person if the deceased had at least 5 years of pensionable service or at least 10 years of pension qualifying period, or if the insured person fulfilled the qualifying period for an invalidity pension or was already receiving an old-age, early or invalidity pension, or was exercising their right to professional rehabilitation.
If the death of the insured person was caused by an accident at work or an occupation disease, family members are entitled to a survivor's pension regardless of the length of the pension qualifying period completed by the insured person.
If the deceased did not work full-time, this working time is recognised as full-time for meeting the condition of the qualifying period for the right to a survivor's pension under the Labour Act.
What conditions do I need to meet?
Family members of the deceased insured person (see Jargon busters) or retiree are entitled to a survivor's pension. It is based on the right of family members to maintenance by the deceased.
A family member who intentionally caused the death of an insured person or pension beneficiary and who has been legally convicted to serve a prison sentence for the crime is not entitled.
A widow, widower, cohabitating partner (if the cohabitation lasted at least 3 years, and is proven in extrajudicial proceedings) are entitled to a survivor's pension if they had reached 50 years of age at the time of the death of the married/cohabitating partner. If they are under 50 years of age, they are entitled to a survivor's pension if they are unable to work and this incapacity occurred within 1 year of the death of the married spouse.
However, if at the time of death of the married spouse they have reached 45 years of age, they are entitled to a survivor's pension when they turn 50 years old. They retain this right permanently after 50 years of age.
They are also entitled to a survivor's pension if they are the parent of a child or children who are entitled to a survivor's pension and care. If they become incapable of working while still entitled they remain entitled to a survivor's pension as long as the incapacity lasts.
A widow is entitled to a survivor's pension even when the child of the insured person is born after his death. In this case, entitlement to a survivor's pension begins on the date of the insured person's death.
A divorced spouse is entitled to a survivor's pension if a court decides they are entitled to spousal maintenance.
A child is entitled to a survivor's pension if under 15 years old, or 18 years old if unemployed. If they are in full-time education, they are entitled up to the age of 26, or longer in the case of illness.
A child who becomes incapacitated for work up to the age of entitlement to a survivor's pension or afterwards (if maintained by the deceased), remains entitled as long as the incapacity lasts. Exceptionally, a child with the status of a disabled person with residual work capacity is also entitled to a survivor's pension after the death of a parent regardless of whether the insured person or beneficiary of the entitlement maintained him or her until their death.
Children born out of wedlock and adopted children have the same rights.
A parent who the insured person or beneficiary maintained until their death is entitled to a family pension if they have reached 60 years of age or are incapacitated for work.
What am I entitled to and how can I claim?
Entitlement to a survivor's pension
- The entitlement is permanent for a widow/widower/cohabitating partner/divorced spouse; child; parent, unless the beneficiary marries.
A survivor's pension after the death of the active insured person is calculated as a percentage of the invalidity pension to which the deceased would have been entitled, according to the number of family members:
- for one beneficiary: 70% of the pension;
- for two beneficiaries: 80% of the pension;
- for three beneficiaries: 90% of the pension;
- for four beneficiaries: 100% of the pension.
For family members of a deceased insured person under 55 years of age or with less than 10 years in the capitalized pension scheme, the survivor's pension is calculated, as if the insured person had been insured only under statutory pension scheme.
You claim a survivor's pension by submitting an application to the regional office of the Croatian Pension Insurance Institute (HZMO).
If your place of permanent residence is outside Croatia, the regional office in the place where you were last insured is competent for dealing with your claim.
The right to a survivor's pension may be acquired no earlier than the first day of the following month after the death of the insured person.
If a widow/widower is entitled to more than one pension (for example, you can be entitled to an old-age pension or invalidity pension as well as a survivor's pension), they may choose the most favourable, i.e. the higher pension.
- Insured person - an individual who on the basis of work activities (employment contract, self-employment, etc.) is mandatorily insured within statutory pension scheme.
Forms you may need to fill in
Know your rights
You can find out about your legal rights at the links below. They are not European Commission websites and do not represent the views of the Commission:
Commission publications and websites:
Who do you need to contact?
Croatian Pension Insurance Institute
A. Mihanovica 3
Central Registry of Affiliates
(only for 2nd pillar pension)
Ministry of Labour and Pension System
Ulica grada Vukovara 78