According to the Finnish legal act (L644/2003) and decree (A1146/2004), as of 1.1.2005 students studying for a diploma or degree are eligible for state payments to the national pension fund on their behalf. The pension benefit requires that the studies are started on or after 1.1.2005, and that the student is of 18-67 years of age.
Studies that are eligible for the pension benefit are basic vocational studies, polytechnic degree studies, and both first and second cycle university degree programmes. Polytechnic degree programmes qualify for pension benefits of 4 years. Pension benefits may be paid for up to but not more than 5 years in the case, for example, of a vocational degree followed by a first cycle degree.
Pension benefits are automatic based on information received from educational institutions directly and do not require any action on the part of the student. The pension department of the Social Insurance Institution of Finland (KELA) is able to provide individuals with information regarding the state of their pension benefits, and may request changes in cases of mistakes.