Greece’s economic crisis, which started in 2008, has severely impacted the nation’s social and economic conditions, and unemployment is a significant concern. As a response, the Greek government has adopted several initiatives to assist jobless people, including unemployment payments.

Greece’s Hellenic Manpower Employment Organization oversees the country’s unemployment insurance program (OAED). A person must have worked in Greece and paid into the Greek social security system for the required amount of time to be eligible for benefits. The benefit’s amount is determined based on the individual’s prior pay and length of prior employment.

In Greece, benefits for the unemployed can last up to 12 months. But, in other cases, such as when a person is over 45 or has dependents, this may be prolonged. The individual must actively look for work and take part in job-search programs run by the OAED to keep receiving assistance.

Unemployment benefits are designed to provide financial assistance to individuals who have lost their jobs without any fault of their own. There are many reasons why you can consider applying for unemployment benefits if you have lost your job:

Financial Assistance

Unemployment benefits can help provide a financial cushion while you search for a new job. The amount of money you receive will vary depending on your state and previous earnings.

Basic Necessities

Losing your job can make it difficult to pay for some basic necessities such as food, rent, and utilities. Unemployment benefits can help you cover these expenses while you are between jobs.

Job Search

Unemployment benefits can give you the time and resources to focus on finding a new job. This can include attending job fairs, updating your resume, and networking with potential employers.

Health Insurance

In some states, unemployment benefits also provide access to health insurance. This can be necessarily important if you have a pre-existing medical condition and cannot afford to pay for health insurance on your own.

So, unemployment benefits can provide much-needed assistance during a difficult time. If you have lost your job, it is worth considering applying for unemployment benefits to help you get back on your feet.

Eligibility Criteria Who Can Claim Unemployment Benefits In Greece?

Unemployment benefit (Επίδομα Ανεργίας): The Labour Employment Office (OAED) offers this benefit to unemployed workers who were fired or had their employment contracts expire, are registered with an employment office and are both willing and able to work. If a person is older and unemployed, their unemployment compensation period may be prolonged. 

A person must fulfill several standards to be qualified for unemployment benefits in Greece. Initially, the individual had to have worked in Greece and contributed to social security. You must have worked for at least 125 days in the 14 months preceding the termination of your employment—or at least 200 days in the two years preceding the termination of your employment—to be eligible for this benefit.

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Special Seasonal Allowance (ΕΙΔΙΚΌ ΕΠΟΧΙΚΌ ΕΠΊΔΟΜΑ)

Several professional activities are restricted to particular times of the year. The Labor Employment Office (OAED) has established a unique seasonal aid that is paid to employees who fall under professional categories that are “seasonal” in nature when they cannot engage in their line of work. 

Seasonal workers must work in Greece and be covered by the e-National Social Security Fund (e-EFKA). Seasonal assistance is mainly available to salaried workers in the forest sector, tobacco industry, construction industry, tourism, and food industries, and some categories of salaried workers in the drilling machines, film and television industry, road construction, and arts. The same assistance is also given to salaried shipyard workers as long as they are covered by e-EFKA and work for companies with Greek registrations that conduct business in one or more EU member states. 

Long-Term Unemployment Benefit (ΕΠΊΔΟΜΑ ΜΑΚΡΟΧΡΟΝΊΩΣ ΑΝΈΡΓΩΝ):

The person must be listed as a job seeker with the OAED. This entails filling out a career preference survey and submitting personal information and information about your education and employment history. The person must also apply for unemployment benefits and provide appropriate documentation, such as a certificate of termination from their previous company.

Following a three-month waiting period in the Jobseekers’ Register, a special allowance is given: (ΕΙΔΙΚΌ ΒΟΉΘΗΜΑ ΜΕΤΆ ΑΠΌ ΤΡΊΜΗΝΗ ΠΑΡΑΜΟΝΉ ΣΤΟ ΜΗΤΡΏΟ ΑΝΈΡΓΩΝ): A claimant for unemployment benefits is given the allowance if they do not fulfill the requirements and, as long as they have at least 60 days of insurance and remain listed as unemployed for a minimum of three months. In this case, the employee has to be fired against his will to get this allowance. A person is not entitled to unemployment benefits if they leave their job voluntarily or are fired for bad behavior.

Special allowance is given after the receipt of unemployment benefit (ΕΙΔΙΚΌ ΒΟΉΘΗΜΑ ΜΕΤΆ ΤΗ ΛΉΞΗ ΤΗΣ ΕΠΙΔΌΤΗΣΗΣ ΛΌΓΩ ΑΝΕΡΓΊΑΣ): When the unemployment benefit runs out, as long as the claimant is:

a) not a member of a profession that is “seasonal” in nature, and

b) unemployed for the next month, they are given the allowance (lump sum).

Finally, the applicant must be actively looking for work and participating in job-search initiatives run by the OAED. This entails attending job interviews, submitting applications for open positions, and participating in training courses or vocational training.

Unemployment Benefits For EU Citizens In Greece

You could, at some point in your life, require the assistance that social security benefits can offer. If you meet the requirements and reside in the nation of birth, you are eligible to receive support. Yet, if you are a citizen of any country in the EU and relocate to another region of the EU, you also have the right to benefits. 

The Types Of Unemployment Benefits In Greece

Benefits For Unemployment

To be eligible for this benefit, you must have worked for at least 125 days within the 14 months preceding the termination of your employment, excluding the most recent two months, or at least 200 days within the two years preceding the termination of your employment, excluding the most recent two months.

You must have made contributions equal to 80 insurance days for each year in the two years before getting the benefit if you are receiving it for the first time. Without accounting for the previous two months, you must have worked 125 days throughout the previous 14 months.

If they had worked 210 days in the 14 months before losing their job, unemployed people over the age of 49 are eligible to collect unemployment benefits for 12 months.

Special Seasonal Allowance

This benefit is paid in a lump sum payment each year, and the beneficiary’s profession determines the amount. You must demonstrate that you accrued between 50 and 240 insurance days in your industry (the exact number varies depending on the professional field) and no more than 240 daily salaries in the calendar year before the aid year to be eligible to receive the seasonal assistance. For those who work in construction, there are specific rules.

If you have worked in other industries, you are still eligible for seasonal assistance as long as you did not earn more per day in those industries than in the one where you held your seasonal job the previous year.

All categories, except workers in the construction industry, are not eligible for exceptional seasonal help if they meet the requirements for the standard benefit (unemployment benefit).

Long-Term Unemployment Benefit

The long-term unemployed allowance is a benefit given to long-term unemployed Greek and European Union citizens aged 20 to 66 who are insured against unemployment and have been unemployed permanently for a period longer than 12 months, provided they have used up their right to a 12-month regular unemployment benefit, and their annual family income in lumpsum should not exceed 10,000 euros.

Calculation Of Unemployment Benefits In Greece

In Greece, the amount of unemployment benefits is determined by the individual’s prior wage and the length of their prior job. The benefit might be as little as 360 euros per month and as much as 1,000 euros per month.

The benefit is calculated using the individual’s average daily wages during the previous 12 months of employment. If the employee’s employment lasted shorter than a year, the computation is based on the actual time spent working.

The person’s family circumstances have an impact on the benefit amount as well. The benefit amount is enhanced if the recipient has dependents, such as a spouse or kids.

Following a three-month waiting period in the Jobseekers’ Register, a special allowance is given:

As long as an insured person meets the requirements for a regular subsidy, is registered in the unemployment register for three (3) months, and has worked for at least sixty (60) days under unemployment insurance in the year before the beginning of the quarter, and does not fall into one of the categories listed in Law 1836/89’s Article 22, they are eligible for special assistance (such as builders, quarries, lime makers, musicians, singers, workers in tourism and catering professions, etc.).

The annual net family income of the insured does not exceed a specific level. For individuals listed in the Digital Register of the Unemployed, this sum totals €12,912.69 for 2023 (the tax year 2022), and it rises by €293.47 per year.

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Special Allowance After The Receipt Of Unemployment Benefit

To pay for this special allowance, Insured citizens are required to have the following:

The annual net family income cannot exceed a particular amount to continue receiving unemployment benefits for one month after the regular unemployment benefit period ends.

Lumpsum of 13 daily unemployment benefits (13*15.97=EUR 207.61). 

Job-Search Requirements For Unemployment Allowances In Greece

The individual must actively look for work and take part in job-search programs run by the OAED in order to keep receiving assistance. Benefits may be reduced or suspended as a result of missed job interviews or turning down a good employment offer. 

The OAED offers training programs and job-search assistance to assist unemployed people in finding new work. These services include job matching, career counseling, trade schooling, and training for starting a business. Along with that, the individual must offer proof of their job-searching efforts.

Lastly, if all the unemployment benefits exceed 10,000 euros, then all allowances are taxable in Greece. 

How To Apply For Unemployment Benefits In Greece

Register As Unemployed And Job Seeking 

You can register online with the Public Employment Service (DYPA) to receive an unemployment card if you’re unemployed.

Requirements For Getting An Unemployment Card

  • The candidate should be between the ages of 15 and 74.
  • The candidate should be unemployed.
  • The applicant must be actively looking for work and be able to access the labor market.
  • To use the organization’s electronic services, the applicant must have either an OAED code or a taxisnet code.
  • A third-country national (non-EU) candidate must possess a current employment or residency permit.
  • The candidate cannot be enlisted in the military.

To Get An Unemployment Card Following Documents Are Needed

  • Identification Document (Temporary Protection Status)
  • Tax Registration Number (AFM)
  • E-mail address
  • Telephone Number
  • TaxisNet codes
  • Proof of residence
  • Knowledge of DΟΥ (Public Financial Service), which includes the person

Unemployment Card Offers The Following To The Unemployed

All unemployed who meet the above-mentioned criteria have the access to many benefits other than getting unemployment allowance. Unemployment cards are distributed by the Greek Employment Authority (OAED) to people who are able to work but are unemployed. 

Athens and Thessaloniki, the two largest cities, both offer free public transport.

Free or cheap admission to cultural institutions and museums, discounts on utility bills, coffee shops, fast-food restaurants, mobile phone services, vocational education

Get an unemployment benefit (for self-employed and independently employed persons):

The largest Social Security Organization in Greece and one of the biggest in all of Europe is EFKA. It provides a range of services, including provision of pensions, other benefits, mandatory and optional insurance, etc. If you are covered by eEFKA, you are eligible to receive unemployment benefits provided that you are self- or independently employed, that you have stopped engaging in your profession, and that you were previously covered by:

the Self-Employed Professionals Insurance Organisation (OAEE), or

the Unified Personnel Insurance Fund in the Media (former ETAP-MME)

the Single Insurance Fund for Self-Employed Professionals (former ETAA, in the branches of the former TSMEDE of the former TSAY).

If compliance with the criteria has been verified, individuals covered with EFKA, formerly the Single Insurance Fund for Self-Employed Professionals (ETAA), who have not stopped their professional activity, may also be eligible for unemployment benefits.

You will require your unique Taxisnet login information.

All unemployment cards are distributed by the Greek Employment Authority (OAED) to people who are able to work but are unemployed.

How Long Can You Claim Unemployment Benefits In Greece

Depending on your situation and the kind of benefit you are getting, there are different time limits in Greece for claiming unemployment benefits.

If you meet the qualifying requirements and have paid into the Greek social security system for at least 12 months in the 24 months preceding your unemployed, you may be eligible to receive regular unemployment benefits (Παροχή Αvεργίας) for up to 12 months.

The amount of time you can get special unemployment benefits (Ειδικές Παροχές Ανεργίας ) depends on the kind of benefit you receive. For instance, you may submit a claim for the special unemployment benefit for long-term unemployed (Ειδική Παροχή Ανεργίας Μακροχρόνιων Ανέργων) for up to 24 months.

100% Funded Educational Training in Greece for unemployed

With varied levels of support, Greece has a number of programs and initiatives targeted at giving unemployed people chances for educational training. These are a few of these programs:

The Human Resources Development Program (Πρόγραμμα Aνάπτυξης Ανθρώπινου Δυναμικού, ΠΑΔΑ,) consists of the following: This initiative offers fully-funded training courses to the unemployed in an effort to increase their employability and skill set. The classes are provided by both public and private training facilities and include a wide range of topics, from computer proficiency to language instruction.

Special Training Programs for Unemployed (Ειδικά Προγράμματα Κατάρτισης Ανέργων, ΕΠΚΑ): These initiatives provide completely sponsored training programs in specialized fields like tourism, building, and renewable energy. The programs are meant to give participants the abilities and information required to work in these fields.

European Social Fund (Ευρωπαϊκό Κοινωνικό Ταμείο, ΕΚΤ): The European Union finances numerous employment and training initiatives in Greece, including some that are geared towards the unemployed. The Greek government and other organizations run these programs, which provide training programs in a variety of subjects.

Unemployment Benefits Greece 3


In Greece, unemployment insurance has been a vital safety net for employees who have lost their jobs as a result of difficult economic conditions or for other causes. These benefits are intended to offer short-term financial support to people so they can maintain their standard of living while looking for new career prospects. However, the mechanism for distributing unemployment benefits in Greece continues to face serious difficulties. Making sure that gains are dispersed efficiently and fairly is one of the major concerns. In a nation like Greece, where there is a sizable informal economy and a high unemployment rate, this can be particularly challenging.

Still, Greek workers who have lost their jobs have benefited greatly from unemployment benefits. Nonetheless, the nation still has a lot of work to do to address the unemployment problem, and continual reforms are required to make sure that the support system for those in need is viable and efficient. Despite the difficulties, the Greek government is making huge efforts to enhance the organizational structure and establish a better system for the distribution of funds.