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Eurofound's EU PolicyWatch collates information on the responses of government and social partners to the COVID-19 crisis, the war in Ukraine, rising inflation, as well as gathering examples of company practices aimed at mitigating the social and economic impacts.

Factsheet for measure SK-2022-12/2268 Updated – measures in Slovakia

Material need benefits for refugees from Ukraine

Pomoc v hmotnej núdzi pre odídencov z Ukrajiny

Country Slovakia , applies nationwide
Time period Open ended, started on 16 March 2022
Context War in Ukraine
Type Legislations or other statutory regulations
Category Measures to prevent social hardship
– Protection of vulnerable groups (beyond employment support)
Author Rastislav Bednarik, Ludovit Cziria, Daniela Keselova, Miroslava Kordosova (IVPR) and Eurofound
Measure added 13 May 2022 (updated 06 September 2022)

Background information

In the reaction to the war in Ukraine the Act No. 417/2013 Coll. on Material need help was amended by the Act No. 92/2022 Coll. on Other certain measures referred to the situation in Ukraine (Lex Ukrajina II) and by the Government Regulation No. 93/2022 on Some measures in social affairs, family, employment services during the state of emergency announces in connection with mass inflow of foreigners to the Slovak Republic caused by the armed conflict in Ukraine.

The aim of the Act No. 92/2022 is to amend the wider legal framework referred to the various fields of society to enable support for the war refugees from Ukraine. This legal framework includes also the material need benefits.

The aim of the Regulation No. 93/2022 is the temporary adjustment of the procedures to provide state social benefits and material need help.

According to the Government Regulation No. 144/2022, the material need benefit cannot be combined with the financial support provided by the UN High Commissionaire for Refugees.

Content of measure

Generally, according to the Act No. 417/2013 Coll. on Material need benefit, material need means the status when the income of household members does not reach the subsistence minimum levels and the household members are not able to ensure their income or to increase it. The purpose is to help to ensure basic living needs. The measure consists of basic material need benefit and other add-on allowances, for instance protection allowance, activation allowance, dependent child allowance and housing allowance. Material need benefit is a means-tested measure.

According to the Regulation No. 93/2022 unaccompanied minor who fled from war in Ukraine and has a guardian in Slovakia agreed by the court, is considered as a member of the guardian’s household for the purpose of material need benefit receiving by the family. This includes also the cases of grandparents fleeing with their grandchildren or an adult sibling fleeing with his/her minor sibling.

To apply for the material need benefit the applicant from Ukraine has to apply for or be granted the temporary refuge status. The applications are accepted at the local Offices of Labour, Social Affairs and Family or in large-capacity registration centres.

The refugees from Ukraine are eligible for the basic material need benefit and add-on allowances (protection allowance and dependent child allowance) under the same conditions as the Slovak citizens. The level of benefits is amended usually from the beginning of the current year by the Ministry of Labour, Social Affairs and Family of the SR.

Total level of the benefit is based on household size. As of 1 January 2022 the level of basic material need benefit ranges from €68.80 a month for an individual adult person to €241.30 a month for a couple with more than four children.

Additionally, in case of eligibility for add-on allowances the household receives monthly: protection allowance (at one of three available levels - €70.40, €38.70 or €15.10), activation allowance (the levels are €140.80 and €70.40) dependent child allowance: €19.30 and housing allowance: €59.40 (one member household) and €94.80 (more than one household members).

Updates

The following updates to this measure have been made after it came into effect.

01 May 2022

As of 1 May 2022 the emergency financial assistance programme is provided in Slovakia by international organisations the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR), UNICEF and the International Federation of Red Cross (IFRC). They pay the financial support instead of material need benefit provided by the Offices of Labour, Social Affairs and Family. Eligible are persons from Ukraine with temporary refuge or asylum applicants who have come to Slovakia since 24 February 2022. They can apply for support within one abovementioned international organisation.

The amount of support depends on the number of family members and their age. The rates are: €80 to adult person aged 18 and older, €160 for child up to three years of age and €60 for child between three and 18 years. A family can receive maximum of €380.

Use of measure

A total of 16,560 refugees from Ukraine with temporary refuge received the material need benefit in April 2022. It made a total of €2,169,624.80. The highest total amount of €350,000 was paid in Bratislava. About €200,000 was paid in Košice and more than €86,000 in Nitra region. The benefit is paid from the state budget.

Labour offices received total of 22,514 material need applications for more than 45,000 persons from Ukraine with temporary refuge by 30 April 2022.

Target groups

Workers Businesses Citizens
Does not apply to workers Does not apply to businesses Migrants or refugees
People on social benefits

Actors and funding

Actors Funding
National government
National funds

Social partners

Social partners' role in designing the measure and form of involvement:

Trade unions Employers' organisations
Role No involvement No involvement
Form Not applicable Not applicable

Social partners' role in the implementation, monitoring and assessment phase:

  • No involvement
  • Main level of involvement: N/A

Involvement

There is no involvement of social partners in this measure.

Views and reactions

There is no involvement of social partners in this measure and no reactions.

Sources

  • 15 March 2022: Sumy dávky a príspevkov od 01.01.2022 (www.upsvr.gov.sk)
  • 22 March 2022: Lex Ukrajina II: Act No. 92/2022 Coll. on Other certain measures referred to the situation in Ukraine (Zákon č. 92/2022 Z. z. o niektorých ďalších opatreniach v súvislosti so situáciou na Ukrajine) (www.slov-lex.sk)
  • 22 March 2022: Dôvodová správa k Zákonu č. 92/2022 Z. z. (rokovania.gov.sk)
  • 23 March 2022: Government Regulation No. 93/2022 Coll. (Nariadenie Vlády SR č. 93/2022 Z. z.) (www.slov-lex.sk)
  • 23 March 2022: Dôvodová správa k Nariadeniu č. 93/2022 Z. z. - osobitná časť (rokovania.gov.sk)
  • 23 March 2022: Dôvodová správa k Nariadeniu 93/2022 Z. z. - všeobecná časť (rokovania.gov.sk)
  • 30 March 2022: Act No. 417/2013 Coll. on Material need assistance as amended (Zákon č. 417/2013 Z. z. o pomoci v hmotnej núdzi a o zmene a doplnení niektorých zákonov (www.slov-lex.sk)
  • 27 April 2022: Government Regulation No. 144/2022 Coll. (Nariadenie Vlády Slovenskej republiky č. 144/2022 Z. z., ktorým sa mení a dopĺňa nariadenie vlády Slovenskej republiky č. 93/2022 Z. z. (www.slov-lex.sk)
  • 27 April 2022: Pomoc v hmotnej núdzi: Odídencom z Ukrajiny vyplatí štát necelú pätinu z celkovej sumy (www.upsvr.gov.sk)
  • 18 May 2022: Užitočné informácie pre občanov z Ukrajiny k hmotnej núdzi a dotáciám na deti (www.upsvr.gov.sk)
  • 18 May 2022: Užitočné informácie pre občanov Ukrajiny (www.upsvr.gov.sk)
  • 07 June 2022: Zásady vyplácania pomoci v hmotnej núdzi od medzinárodných organizácií (www.employment.gov.sk)

Citation

Eurofound (2022), Material need benefits for refugees from Ukraine, measure SK-2022-12/2268 (measures in Slovakia), EU PolicyWatch, Dublin, https://static.eurofound.europa.eu/covid19db/cases/SK-2022-12_2268.html

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