As a grant-based researcher at the University of Eastern Finland
When working as a grant-based researcher in the University of Eastern Finland, there are two types of agreements available depending on the time of the grant period. If you have received an external funding of at least 12 months, you'll have an opportunity to conclude a part-time (10%) contract of employment with the university. More information about 10% contract of employment in Kamu.
The grant-funded researcher with a funding shorter than 12 months can conclude the grant-funded researcher´s agreement with university. The agreement is prepared in Mepco by a HR-person of the department. In the agreement, the researcher’s activities at the university, and the resources made available to him or her (e.g. the university’s equipment, facilities and other resources) are concluded. Also, potential compensation for the office and other resources recorded in the grant decision will be recorded in the agreement.
By signing the agreement, the grant-funded researcher agrees to
- ensure insurance coverage or a corresponding procedure against the damages or accidents, which may occur, while operating at the university
- take care of his or her own pension coverage
- get to know the University’s safety instructions, regulations and other decisions relating his or her activities
- give a permission to save in the university’s register the data given by him or her, or obtained from the access control system
- execute a separate agreement on the transfer of rights, if needed
- notify of intellectual property rights created in other contexts than collaborative research projects and of other commercially valuable observations made using the university’s research materials or samples
- publishing the research results, which have been created using the university’s research materials samples or other resources.
Information required to conclude the agreement:
- name, social security number of date of birth, address of the grant-based researcher
- name of the supervisor
The agreement gives you
- the access rights assigned to the UEF user account. These include rights to O365-environment, e-mail address, rights to campus and Moodle logins.
- a right to have lunch at staff prices at the campus restaurants
- a possibility to participate in staff training if there are vacancies. Trainings are, however, primarily targeted for members of staff.
Occupational health services are not available for those who work via a grant. Further, the Finnish Student Health Service (FSHS) does not offer its services to doctoral students. However, as a grant researcher you are entitled to use public health care, if you have a municipality of residence (kotikunta) in Finland, if you have European Health Insurance Card, if you come from Australia or Quebeck, or if you are covered by statutory insurance. Through public health services you can access e.g. dental services, family health services, mental health services, vaccinations, and laboratory services.
The grants awarded by private foundations are taxable only for the amount that exceeds the Finnish state artist grant, which varies almost annually. Information about maximum tax-exempt amounts of grants can be found on Taxation of grants, scholarships, awards for merit and other awards- webpage. If this limit is exceeded, you need to pay taxes. The Association of Finnish Foundations updates the annual threshold amount on their webpage and offers widely information about the taxation of grant researchers, also giving tips for the most general problems about their taxation.
The Finnish tax administration receives information about paid grants directly from the foundations. Please note that when calculating taxes the first possible day to cash the grant is considered to be the starting date of your grant period. Therefore, when awarded several grants a year, please contact your local tax office. From Vero.fi webpage you can find more information and forms for report your grants, but also links to webinars meant for grant researchers. Also note that the rent of your working space and many materials, such as books, are tax-deductible.
Grant-based researchers are responsible to take care of their pension and workplace accident insurances themselves. These are handled by the Farmer´s social insurance institution (Mela). Researcher with a working grant longer than 4 months is obliged to take out their statutory pension and workplace accident insurances. Also, researchers with a shorter funding period are allowed to seek for insurance from Mela. The insurance should be taken also when working abroad or you come from abroad to work in Finland.
Please note that the statutory insurance for grant researchers does not include insurance for leisure-time. Anyhow it´s possible to take MATA-insurance for leisure-time from Mela. Membership of some unions, like FOORT, include leisure time insurance. Also some foundations offer their own extra-insurances.
If you as a grant-based researcher cause the breakage of the university’s research equipment, if certain conditions are met, the university is compensated for the damage under the university’s property insurance. The university’s property insurance covers property, so it does not matter who causes the breakage. If the damage has been caused intentionally or negligently, your liability for damages is investigated separately, in which case compensation may also be sought under your liability insurance policy, if you have one. Grant-based researchers are not covered by the university’s liability insurance.
Unemployment and social security
A working grant usually blocks the unemployment benefits, but when it comes to travelling grants and small nonrecurring grants consideration may be used.
You may be entitled to Finnish social security coverage (e.g. child benefit, basic unemployment security, and sickness and parental allowances), if your residence in Finland is considered permanent and if your income is sufficiently high. You may also be entitled to apply for the European Health Insurance Card (EHIC), which guarantees necessary medical treatment when you travel or stay temporarily in another EU or EEA country or in Switzerland. Read more about Kela benefits for incomers, social security coverage for researchers, and EHIC on Kela's webpages.
All grants are considered to be income when determining housing allowance and income support. A grant awarded for a dissertation will not be considered as income when determining the sum of day-care fees.
The amounts of maternity, paternity and parental allowances are determined on the basis of the most recent work income confirmed in taxation. If you have received a grant and been MyEL insured, maternity, paternity and parental allowances are determined according to the work income that formed its basis. If, however, the work income earned in the six months preceding the allowance has increased from the in-come confirmed in taxation, the allowance will be paid according to this more recent income. If you have had no work income, the minimum allowance will be paid. Read more about Kela benefits for families with children on Kela's webpage.
As a grant researcher you are entitled to an unemployment benefit if you have been MyEL insured altogether for 24 months during the previous 48 months. In addition, you are entitled to earnings-related allowance, if you are a member of an unemployment fund and have been a salaried employee at least for 26 weeks over the review period of 28 months before the start of the unemployment. The unemployment benefit can be granted if the grant term is demonstrably over and you are seeking fulltime employment. When you become unemployed after a grant term you can, however, maintain your competence (e.g. familiarise yourself with new tools and methods, apply for grants, network in conferences) without this affecting your entitlement to unemployment benefits.
Grants are not taken into account when determining the amount of earnings-related unemployment benefit. Grant terms are not accepted for the employment condition of earnings-related allowance, but they extend the review period of the employment condition, which is why it is not recommend to withdraw from the fund during grant-funded work.
When working abroad with a grant awarded by a Finnish organisation you may, if certain conditions are met, be covered by the Finnish social security system and it is not worthwhile for you to terminate trade union or unemployment fund membership when leaving Finland.
A doctoral student receiving a grant may be entitled to financial aid for students (study grants, housing supplements and state-guaranteed student loans). More information about eligibility to financial aid on Kela’s webpage.