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Applying for Estonian pension while residing in a foreign state

If while receiving your pension you relocate to another EEA State or Switzerland, we will pay you your pension earned in Estonia as usual. You also have the right to keep receiving your pension in partner countries.
The state of Estonia pays a pension to persons of pensionable age residing elsewhere in the world if they have earned at least 15 years of pension qualifying period in Estonia.

If you reside in a European Union Member State, Norway, Iceland, Liechtenstein, Switzerland or a state which has signed a bilateral cooperation agreement on social security with Estonia, then in order to apply for a pension from Estonia:

  • Contact the social security authority of your country of residence;
  • Present to them the documents necessary for applying for a pension from Estonia.

The competent authority of your country of residence will forward your pension application to us.

If you reside in another country, please note that in order to receive an Estonian pension you must have earned at least 15 years of pension qualifying period in Estonia. Please contact the Estonian Social Insurance Board directly to apply for an Estonian pension.

Proof of Life

If you reside outside of Estonia and receive your pension (old-age pension, survivor’s pension or pension for incapacity for work) from Estonia, you are required to prove that you are alive each year.

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Payment of Estonian pension to foreign states

If you reside in a European Union Member State, Norway, Iceland, Liechtenstein, Switzerland, Canada or Australia,

we usually pay your Estonian pension once a month on the 5th day of each month for the current month.
At your request we can also pay the pension once a quarter or once every six months.

If you reside in Moldova, Ukraine, Belarus or the Russian Federation,

your Estonian pension is paid through the competent authorities of the relevant country once a quarter. If you relocate to one of those countries and want your Estonian pension payments to continue, you must contact the competent authority of your country of residence which will arrange for the necessary documents and send them to us.

If you relocate elsewhere,

we will keep paying your pension if you have earned at least 15 years of pension qualifying period in Estonia.

NB! In order to receive benefits paid by the Estonian state and to pay them out on time, your name and personal data must be up-to-date in the Estonian population register. This is especially important in situations where a name change has taken place, for example as a result of marriage, divorce or gender change. The Estonian Social Insurance Board cannot change names in the population register or accept applications for name changes. In order to initiate the name change process in the population register, submit an application to the nearest Estonian diplomatic representation abroad. Attach the original document proving the name change and a copy of the passport or ID card to the application. You can find additional information on the website of the Ministry of the Interior.

Let us know that you have relocated to another country and submit an application for continued payments of Estonian pension:

  • Via e-mail to the address [email protected];
  • Via mail to the address Paldiski mnt 80, 15092 Tallinn;
  • By fax: +372 640 8155.

If you want us to transfer your pension to a bank account in a foreign bank, the service fee charged by the local bank shall be covered by you.

Taxation of Pensions if You Live Abroad

Rules for imposing income tax are different for residing in Estonia and for residing outside of Estonia. For example, Estonian income tax incentives do not apply to people residing outside of Estonia.

  • Income tax (20%) is imposed on the pensions of everyone whose place of residence is not in Estonia.
  • By way of an exception your Estonian pension is not subject to income tax in Estonia if you reside in Albania, Arabia, Armenia, Azerbaijan, Austria, Bahrain, Georgia, Guernsey, Spain, Croatia, Ireland, India, Italy, Japan, Jersey, Kazakhstan, Greece, Kyrgyzstan, Cyprus, Lithuania, South Korea, Latvia, Macedonia, Isle of Man , Mauritius, Moldova, Norway, Poland, Portugal, France, Germany, Serbia, Singapore, Slovakia, Slovenia, Great Britain, Switzerland, Thailand, Czech Republic, Turkey, Turkmenistan, Ukraine, Uzbekistan, Belarus or Vietnam. If you reside in one of those countries, you are required to submit once a year a certificate of residence for tax purposes issued by the Tax Board of your country of residence. If you hold a valid certificate of residence for tax purposes, we will pay your Estonian pension in full and it is subject to tax in your country of residence. If you do not have a certificate of residence for tax purposes or it has expired, your pension is subject to 20% income tax in Estonia.
  • Tax-free pension income can be used if you live in Belgium, Bulgaria, the Netherlands, Iceland, Liechtenstein, Luxembourg, Malta, Sweden, Romania, Finland, Denmark or Hungary.
    • From the beginning of 2024, a separate tax-free income of 776 euros per month applies to people who have reached retirement age.
    • From 2023, a general tax-free income of 654 euros per month applies to a person of working age. The individual tax-free income rate depends on the person's annual income in Estonia and the country of residence.

Related links

Proof of Life

Last updated: 10.04.2024

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