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Maintenance allowance

The state pays maintenance allowance of up to 100 euros a month to children whose parent does not or parents do not perform their maintenance obligation. 

Maintenance allowance can be applied for during court, enforcement and bankruptcy proceedings.

 

Maintenance allowance during the court proceedings

To whom?


The right to maintenance allowance is held by an underage child living in Estonia or a child up to 21 years of age if the child is enrolled in school. In order to receive maintenance allowance the court must first issue a court order in favour of the child.

An application for maintenance allowance on behalf of an underage child is filed by the child’s legal representative. A legal representative may be the child’s parent or guardian, including a legal person. An adult child can file their application themselves.

How much?


We pay maintenance allowance for up to 150 days and the amount of maintenance allowance per month is 100 euros.

We terminate the payment of maintenance allowance during court proceedings before the passing of 150 days if

  • the order on interim protection of the claim has been annulled;
  • the court proceedings in the matter of the maintenance claim have been terminated;
  • it becomes evident that the grounds for payment of maintenance allowance were not or are no longer complied with;
  • the obligor performs their maintenance obligation and pays the child allowance to the extent set forth by the court order;
  • the obligor or the child is deceased.


How to apply?


If you want to apply for maintenance allowance, first file a maintenance claim with the court. More information on how to file a claim with the court.

Within 45 days after having filed a claim with the court file an application with the Social Insurance Board. Along with the application you must provide your identity document, an order on proposal for payment or order on interim protection of the claim. You must also set out the name, personal identification code or date of birth and, where possible, the address of the obligor in the maintenance claim.

  • The fastest way to file the application is through the state portal www.eesti.ee
  • A digitally signed application can also be filed electronically by sending it to the e-mail address [email protected].
  • You can also file your application at the Social Insurance Board’s customer service points or mail it to the address Paldiski mnt 80, 15092 Tallinn.
  • After a decision has been made we will send you an e-mail to that effect. In order to access the decision you must log in to our self-service portal. While waiting for the decision on maintenance allowance please check in the self-service portal whether we have your current e-mail address.
 

Maintenance allowance during the enforcement proceedings

To whom?


We pay maintenance allowance during enforcement proceedings to a child if the parent obligated to pay maintenance does not do so although they have been ordered by a court judgment to pay maintenance or the parents have concluded an agreement on the payment of maintenance at a notary’s or family mediator’s office.

The right to maintenance allowance is held by an underage child or an adult child until the attainment of 21 years of age if the child is enrolled in school.
An application for maintenance allowance on behalf of an underage child is filed by the child’s legal representative. A legal representative may be the child’s parent or guardian, including a legal person. An adult child can file their application themselves.

How much?


The amount of maintenance allowance during enforcement proceedings is up to 100 euros per calendar month for one obliged parent.

  • Example 1. If an obligor has been ordered by a court decision to pay monthly maintenance of 215 euros, the maximum amount of maintenance allowance per month is 100 euros.
  • Example 2. If an obligor has been ordered by a court decision to pay monthly maintenance of 80 euros, the maximum amount of maintenance allowance per month is 80 euros.

 

How to apply?


If you want to apply for maintenance allowance during enforcement proceedings, you must first file a maintenance claim with the court (information on how to file a claim with the court can be found here and here). If a court judgment has entered into force or a notarised or family mediation agreement has been concluded and the other parent fails to pay maintenance, contact an enforcement agent and commence enforcement proceedings (contact information for enforcement agent’s offices can be found here).

  • You can also file with an enforcement agent an application for maintenance allowance along with an application to commence enforcement proceedings. The application form is available on the website of the Chamber of Enforcement Officers and Trustees in Bankruptcy. Information necessary for payment of maintenance allowance during enforcement proceedings is provided to us by the enforcement agent on a monthly basis. 

Maintenance allowance during enforcement proceedings is only paid if the enforcement proceedings have lasted for a full month. If after the 1-month waiting period the parent required to pay allowance has not settled their debt to their child, the enforcement agent will start keeping record of whether and in which amount the child receives monthly allowance.

If the child receives no maintenance allowance in the month following the 1-month waiting period, we will start paying the child maintenance allowance of up to 100 euros per calendar month. If the maintenance ordered by a court decision is lower, the maintenance will be paid on the basis of the amount set out in the court decision. Maintenance allowance payments for the previous month will be made afterwards by the 10th day of the following month. 

  • Example 1. An applicant commences enforcement proceedings in the matter of maintenance on 20 June and at the same time files an application for maintenance allowance during enforcement proceedings. The period of calculation of maintenance starts on 1 August. If the child receives no maintenance in August, the Social Insurance Board will make the maintenance allowance payment no later than on 10 September.
  • Example 2. Enforcement proceedings in the matter of a child’s maintenance have lasted since 2016, meaning at least the required 1 month. The applicant files an application for maintenance allowance during enforcement proceedings on 5 January 2017. The period of calculation of maintenance starts on 1 February and if from 1 February to 28 February the child receives no maintenance or receives maintenance less than 100 euros or less than the amount ordered by a court judgment, we will pay maintenance allowance for the month of February no later than on 10 March.
  • Example 3. An applicant commences enforcement proceedings in the matter of maintenance on 20 April and at the same time files an application for maintenance allowance during enforcement proceedings. At the time of filing of the application there was a requirement of a 4‑month waiting period. By 1 July two months will have passed since the start of the enforcement proceedings. Consequently, the period of calculation of maintenance allowance is from 1 July through 31 July. Maintenance allowance can be paid no later than on 10 August.

Maintenance allowance during enforcement proceedings can also be applied for from both parents if the applicant is a guardian. In that case enforcement proceedings must be commenced against both parents and an application for maintenance allowance from both parents must also be filed. If an application is filed for receiving maintenance allowance from both parents, it is possible to receive maintenance allowance of up to 200 euros per child a month.

Please note! When calculating maintenance allowance all amounts received as maintenance are taken into account (including amounts paid by, for instance, the child’s grandparents by way of substitution obligation).

  • Example: Maintenance in the amount of 160 euros has been ordered to be paid by one parent and at the same time by the child’s grandparents by way of substitution obligation. The child’s grandparents pay monthly maintenance of 160 euros directly to the child’s account. The parent raising the child is under an obligation to inform the enforcement agent of the maintenance received and the enforcement agent will take these amounts into account when paying maintenance allowance. Since maintenance allowance is paid up to 100 euros per calendar month, the child has no right to state maintenance allowance.

Payment of maintenance allowance does not release the obligor from their obligation but the state will claim the debt from the parent who has failed to pay maintenance to their child.

 

Maintenance allowance during bankruptcy proceedings

To whom?


Maintenance allowance during bankruptcy proceedings also ensures payment of maintenance allowance to children whose parents do not perform their maintenance obligation arising from the Family Law Act while bankruptcy proceedings against the parents are on-going.

How much?


The amount of maintenance allowance is up to 100 euros per child a month and this is paid throughout the bankruptcy proceedings.

Maintenance allowance during bankruptcy proceedings is paid starting from the declaration of bankruptcy until the termination of the bankruptcy proceedings in the event the obligor does not perform their maintenance obligation. Calculation of maintenance allowance during bankruptcy proceedings takes into account the amount received by the child from the obligor every month.

  • Example 1: On 30 May the obligor transfers 40 euros to the child. If the child received no more maintenance during the calculation period of the month of May (1–31 May), the amount of maintenance allowance for the month of May is 60 euros (100 – 40 = 60).
  • Example 2: On 5 August the trustee in bankruptcy transfers to the child 30 euros collected from the obligor, and 100 euros on 20 August. During the calculation period of August the child received a total of 130 euros. The child has received from the obligor maintenance of at least 100 euros and so no maintenance allowance will be paid for the month of August.

When the bankruptcy proceedings end, the child has the right to maintenance allowance during enforcement proceedings that can be applied for at an enforcement agent’s office along with commencement of enforcement proceedings.

Please note! Applicant for maintenance allowance is required to inform the Social Insurance Board if the obligor has paid maintenance to the child during the month maintenance allowance is received.

How to apply?


In order to receive maintenance allowance during bankruptcy proceedings, bankruptcy proceedings must first be commenced against the parent obligated to pay maintenance. If during the past year you have received maintenance allowance either during enforcement proceedings or court proceedings, we will make you a proactive offer for maintenance allowance during bankruptcy proceedings through the Social Insurance Board’s self-service portal. If you have received no maintenance allowance before, you must file an application for maintenance allowance in our self-service portal. 

 

Maintenance Allowance Application if the Debtor Lives Abroad

If the parent obligated to pay maintenance to a child has moved abroad and does not pay maintenance to the child, then you should contact the Ministry of Justice through whom enforcement proceedings will be commenced in the foreign state and with whom you can also file an application for maintenance allowance during enforcement proceedings.

More information on recognition of maintenance decisions in foreign states.

At the Ministry of Justice you can also choose an enforcement agent who will be mediating the maintenance. The Ministry of Justice will send the documents to the right parties. And then you will be receiving money collected in enforcement proceedings commenced abroad from the enforcement agent whom you authorised to mediate the maintenance.