Social assistance

Updated: 18 Jun 2021
Next update: 18 Jun 2022

The indicator shows the share of persons having received basic social assistance, supplementary assistance and/or preventive social assistance during a calendar year as a percentage of the entire population. In these statistics, all social assistance recipients in a household are added up, which means that children are included in the figures. The data are drawn from the register of social assistance after the end of the calendar year in June of the following year. Population data refer to the situation at the end of the statistical reference year. For households that have only received basic social assistance, newer statistical data are available for the current calendar year on the Social Insurance Institution's website.

The indicator can describe the threat of social exclusion and cumulative disadvantage, because income support is the last-resort form of social assistance. The indicator can be used to locate gaps in basic security because it indirectly indicates the adequacy of the primary forms of social support. Receiving income support is an indicator closely related to unemployment, so it can tell about the functionality and success of education, business and employment measures.


In 2019, altogether 8.2 per cent of the population received income support. Income support is granted to households. In 2019, a total of 298,017 households received income support. The number of persons living in households having received income support was 452,911.

The total income support expenditure was around EUR 780 million. Compared with 2018, the expenditure decreased in real terms by around five per cent.