The EU rules on social security coordination protect the social security rights of mobile citizens. The latest statistical reports on social security coordination have now been published. These reports provide an overview of the data provided by Member States on the functioning of these rules.
Free movement of persons would not be possible without the guarantee that citizens do not lose their social security protection when moving to another country in Europe.
In order to protect the social security rights of persons moving within Europe, common rules were established at EU level in order to coordinate the different national systems of social security. These rules cover anyone who moves to another country to settle permanently, work temporarily or study, and even those who are travelling to take a holiday.
The purpose of these rules is to ensure that persons exercising their right to free movement are not adversely affected by the application of the different national legislations established by each Member State.
Under these rules, mobile persons:
- are covered by the legislation of one Member State at a time so they only pay contributions in one Member State;
- have the same rights and obligations as the nationals of the Member State where they are covered;
- when claiming a benefit, their previous periods of insurance, work or residence in other Member States are taken into account if necessary; and
- if they are entitled to a cash benefit from one Member State, they may generally receive it even when living in a different Member State.
The 2019 statistical reports on social security coordination assess the functioning of the social security coordination rules during reference year 2018 in the following areas:
- applicable social security legislation
- cross-border healthcare
- unemployment benefits
- family benefits
- cross-border old age, survivors' and invalidity pensions
- maternity and equivalent paternity benefits
- collection of outstanding contributions
- recovery of unduly paid social security benefits
- measures to tackle fraud and error
The main findings of these reports are also summarised in the separate report Coordination of social security systems at a glance. The complete set of reports can be obtained here.