Social Security Benefits in Greece

Find out about the social security services that you may be entitled to in Greece...

There are a number of benefits within the Greek social security system that you may be eligible for once living the country. Depending on the insured person's personal situation they may receive benefits and allowances from IKA for the following:

Maternity and Birth Benefits

Only directly insured women are eligible for maternity benefits. Women are entitled to 56 days maternity leave before the birth and for 63 days after the birth. To be eligible for this maternity benefit the mother must stop working. Maternity benefits include a birth grant and a maternity allowance. The birth benefit, given to all insured women, is one payment made to help defray the cost of treatment in a maternity clinic or hospital. The benefit is equal to 30 times the day wage of an unskilled worker. To qualify for maternity benefits, the mother must have worked at least 200 days in the two years prior to the expected delivery date. If employer benefits and IKA benefits do not at least equal the earnings a directly insured woman would have received if she had worked during that period, the woman is entitled to an additional lump sum maternity benefit from the Manpower Employment Organisation (Οργανισμός Απασχόλησης Εργατικού Δυναμικού/Organismós Apaschólisis Ergatikoú Dynamikoú - OAED).

This benefit covers the difference between the IKA benefit and the earnings which the insured woman would have earned had she been working. Women who worked a shorter period before the delivery date, and who therefore do not qualify for the above described maternity allowance, can apply for a different maternity cash benefit. The amount is approximately €440, with half paid before the birth and the other half after birth.

Employed mothers are also entitled to an additional six months of maternity protection leave and reduced working hours leave at the end of their maternity leave. Benefits are paid by the Greek Manpower Employment Organisation (OAED), if the woman has received maternity payments from the IKA and has a work contract.

To apply for maternity benefit online visit the Manpower Employment Organisation (OAED) website and enter the E-Services system

Birth benefit

The birth benefit given to all insured women is one payment made to help defray the cost of treatment in a maternity clinic or hospital. The benefit is equal to 30 times the day wage of an unskilled worker. To claim for maternity or birth benefits, the following documents are required:
  • the insurance booklets of the two most recent years or a certificate authenticated by the IKA office of the insured person's place of residence
  • a health booklet (individual and family if applicable)
  • a certificate from an IKA gynaecologist indicating the expected date of delivery
  • a declaration from the employer stating that the woman has stopped working
  • a declaration form completed by the woman stating the date on which she stopped working (the form is available at local IKA offices)
  • the birth certificate of the child (for the post-birth allowance)

Sickness or Accident Benefits

A sickness allowance is paid to insured members when they are ill and diagnosed as unfit to work. A Work Disability Report, excusing the employee from work for up to 15 days, can be issued by any IKA doctor. If this period exceeds 15 days, only the IKA Health Committee is authorised to issue this report. Sickness allowance is paid for up to 182 days (if the applicant worked 100 working days during the year prior to illness), up to 360 days (if the applicant worked 300 working days during the last two years) or up to 720 days. Claims for the sickness allowance can be made at any KEP office. The following documents are required:


Incapacity benefits are available for individuals and children with disabilities. The amount paid depends on the degree of disability. Applications for benefits are made through the applicant's social security organisation.


A number of pension benefits are available to the insured:
  • Old age pensions (retirement)
  • Reduced old age pension
  • Disability pension - if not already a beneficiary of an Old Age Pension and a member of IKA insurance
  • Death pension - for the surviving spouse and children
Pensions are paid to men who retire at 65 years of age and women who retire at 60; reduced old age pensions are available from age 60 for men and 65 for women, provided they have worked at least 4,050 days. Applications for pensions should be made at the local KEP office.

Funeral Allowance

IKA pays the funeral expenses of insured individuals that have worked at least 100 days in the year before the death.

Unemployment Benefits in Greece

Unemployment benefits are available to those who have been insured by OAED and lost their job through termination or the expiration of their work contract. Within 60 days after the redundancy, an application for benefits should be submitted to the local OAED office. Once registration is complete, the unemployment benefit begins. For further information on unemployment benefits

Family Allowance in Greece

Family allowances (Οικογενειακά επιδόματα/oikogeniaka epidomata) are available for families with children until the child reaches the age of 18, or permanently if the child has disabilities which were certified before the child reached the age of 18. The amount paid depends on the family income, how many children there are in the family, and where and if the parents are employed. The employer takes care of this and the amount is paid together with the salary. The Distributive Fund for Employee Family Allowances (DLOEM) is financed equally by employees and employers and gives family allowances to employees who don’t receive an allowance from their employer. This is paid annually in a lump sum. The amount is higher for parents with more children, disabled children and for single parents. The Agricultural Insurance Organisation gives an additional allowance for a third and fourth child.

Further Information