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Care of a sick child (vab)

Care of a sick child (vab) is when you stay home from work or cannot receive unemployment benefit to take care of a sick child. The compensation you receive when caring for a sick child is called temporary parental benefit.

Can I receive compensation for caring for a sick child?

You can receive compensation for caring for a sick child

  • from the date the child is 8 months old up until the day before the child turns 12. There are times when you are entitled to compensation even if the child is older, younger or covered by the Act regarding Support and Service for Persons with Certain Functional Impairments (LSS). Read more about this in Frequently asked questions.
  • if you stay home from work or refrain from receiving unemployment benefit to take care of a sick child.
  • if you accompany the child to the doctor, children's health centre, dentist, or child and adolescent psychiatric services.
  • if you are home with the child because the ordinary caregiver is sick.
  •  if you are participating in a course arranged by a healthcare provider in order to learn how to care for your child.
  • if you are insured in Sweden. You usually are if you live or work here.
  • if the child lives in Sweden or within the EU/EEA or Switzerland.

How much money will I get?

In the “Kassakollen” function, you can see how much money you can receive when caring for a sick child. The compensation for caring for a sick child is a little less than 80 per cent of your regular income, but there is a maximum limit for how much money you can receive.

Kassakollen

How many days can I take for the care of a sick child?

You can receive compensation for caring for a sick child for maximum 120 days per year. For the final 60 days, you can only receive the compensation if the child is sick and not if the child's regular caregiver is sick.

If there are several people caring for the sick child, you can share the compensation days.

Parents of a seriously ill child up to the age of 18 can receive compensation for an unlimited number of days.

You can receive compensation if:

  • there is a distinct threat to the child’s life or
  • if the child, after or in direct connection to a life-threatening condition, receives treatment for the illness and the child’s life is in jeopardy without this treatment.

If the child is seriously ill, both of the parents have the right to compensation for the same child and time for an unlimited number of days.

If your child is seriously ill, the doctor must write a statement. It shall include a diagnosis and a description of the child's illness and treatment.

 

How do I apply for compensation for care of a sick child (vab)?

Notify the Public Employment Service if you are taking care of a sick child and cannot participate in your programme. When you apply for compensation, you indicate that you were absent for temporary care of a child on the relevant days. You will receive compensation for the days you cared for a sick child.

If you are log in to My pages (Mina sidor), you can apply using the form.            

7114 Ansökan om aktivitetsstöd, utvecklingsersättning och etableringsersättning

 

1. Apply for temporary parental benefit for care of a sick child

Once the child has recovered and you are back at work or begin to seek work again, you must apply for compensation for the days you cared for the child. Remember to apply no more than 90 days from the first day you were home with the child.

If the child is sick for more than one week

Beginning with the eighth day of sickness, you must send in a certificate from a doctor or nurse. The days for which you do not take compensation for care of a sick child, for example Saturdays and Sundays, also count as part of the sickness period. Send the certificate to Försäkringskassans inläsningscentral, 839 88 Östersund.

2. Disbursement

If you apply no later than the 10th, the money will be paid out on the 25th of the same month.
If you apply after the 10th, your money will be paid out on the 25th of the next month.

If we need more information from you, this may affect the disbursement date. We will contact you if this is the case. The problem is usually that we have not received a doctor's certificate if the child has been sick longer than a week or a doctor’s statement if the child is seriously ill. It could also be the case that we need more information from the doctor.

When will the disbursement appear on My pages (Mina sidor)?

As soon as we have processed your application, you can see your preliminary disbursements under Disbursements (Utbetalningar) on My pages (Mina sidor). The actual disbursement will be shown 1 bank day before the money arrives.

  • If the disbursement date is a Saturday, your money will be paid out on Friday.  
  • If the disbursement date is a Sunday, your money will be paid out on Monday.
  • Disbursement normally scheduled for 25 December will be paid out on 21 December 2018.
 

3. Keep track with the vab calendar

My pages (Mina sidor) contains the vab calendar, where you can see when and how many days you, the other parent or any closely related person cared for a sick child.

You can:

  • share the calendar with the other parent or other closely related persons who cared for the child during sickness, and see a breakdown of who used which days.
  • keep track of whose turn it is to stay home the next time the child gets sick.
  • see all days you applied for or received compensation for this year and last year.
  • choose if you want to look at one or more children

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Frequently asked questions

When the child is healthy, you both apply for compensation for the days you were home. Remember to apply no more than 90 days from the first day you were home with the child.

Tip! The vab calendar can be found on the overview page of My pages (Mina sidor). The calendar shows how many days the two of you received temporary parental benefit (vab) to care for a sick child.

No. Both parents cannot receive compensation for the same child and time.

Yes. You can receive temporary parental benefits for 75 per cent, 50 per cent, 25 per cent and 12.5 per cent of a day.

No, but you can take out parental benefits.

No, you cannot receive unemployment benefit and temporary benefit for care of a sick child (vab) at the same time. However, you can receive the vab compensation if you do not take unemployment benefit for the day you are home to care for a sick child.

Yes, you can receive compensation for care of a sick child if you have your own company.

Yes and no. You can switch your holiday days for compensation for care of a sick child (vab). But only if you are on holiday in Sweden or in another EU country and if your employer approves it. The employer must also change your holiday to care of a sick child.

Yes. The application is done differently depending on who is caring for the child.

If one of the following people is caring for the child :

  • Someone who lives with one of the child’s parents
  • Family home parents (formerly called foster parents)
  • Future adoptive parents
  • A person who was previously married to, or has or has had children with the parent
  • Another person who has legal custody of the child.

Proceed as follows:

  1. The person who cared for the sick child applies for money via My pages (Mina sidor) once the child has recovered. Remember to apply no more than 90 days from the first day you were home with the child.

If anyone other than the above individuals cares for the sick child, such as a relative, neighbour or friend

Proceed as follows:

  1. The person caring for the sick child must call the Customer Centre 0771-524 524 the first time they care for the child. A connection is then registered between the child and that person.
  2. Apply using the form that comes by post. It is not possible to apply on My pages (Mina sidor) if you are not the child’s parent. This is because both parents and the person who cared for the child must sign the form. Remember to apply no more than 90 days from the first day you were home with the child.

Bear in mind that you can only transfer the right to temporary parental benefit (vab) if you would have been eligible for it . This means that another person cannot receive temporary parental benefit if the parent is, for example, studying instead of working.

Yes. But, the registration and application are done differently depending on who is caring for the child.

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 After this, they can register care of a sick child as usual. When the registration is made, we send a form that both the parent and the person caring for the child must sign and send in to Försäkringskassan.

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If you have sole custody and the child is younger than 3 years old, a friend or relative can take care of the child instead of you. This is called expanded temporary parental benefit. The friend or relative is only eligible to receive compensation if they lost income. Ring the Customer Centre to request a form for the person who is caring for the child.

You do not have to calculate this yourself. It is calculated automatically when you apply for temporary parental benefit (vab) on My pages (Mina sidor) or in the app.

How long you can wait to apply and still receive compensation depends on when the child was sick.

If the child was sick before 1 January 2019

If you submitted a registration

Then you can apply for days that are up to 10 years back in time.

If you did not submit a registration

Then you can apply for days for this year and two years back in time.

If the child was sick after 1 January 2019

Then you can only apply for care of a sick child for no more than 90 days back in time from the date the registration was submitted to Försäkringskassan.

Registration and application are done differently depending on who is caring for the sick child (vab).

If you are one of the persons listed below, you can register and apply the same way as the parent would.

  • Someone who lives together with a parent
  • Family home parents (formerly called foster parents)
  • Future adoptive parents
  • The person who was previously married to, or has or has had children with the parent
  • Another person who has legal custody of the child.

If you are a person other than those listed above, such as a relative, neighbour or friend, you must call the Customer Centre at 0771-524 524 the first time you want to claim temporary parental benefit (vab). A connection between you and the child is then registered. You can thereafter register care of a sick child as usual.

Once the registration has been made, we send a form that both you and the parent must sign and send in to Försäkringskassan.

The next time you want to claim temporary parental benefit (vab), you can register on the website without having to call the Customer Centre, but you still need to apply using a form. The form cannot be downloaded from the website. 

The answer is simply because it says so in the law. It may seem complicated and even frustrating, but it is a legal requirement that you must first register that you want to claim temporary parental benefit for caring for a sick child (vab) before you can apply to receive money. We cannot change the law, but we have sent an anti-hassle proposal to the Government to remove the registration requirement.

No, you cannot use this to apply since it requires login with personal identity number. Call Försäkringskassan so we can send a form to you by post. Remember to apply no more than 90 days from the first day you were home with the child.

Yes, you can take compensation for vab instead of parental benefit, but only if the child has been admitted to hospital.

Both parents can receive compensation for care of a sick child at the same time if the child is admitted to hospital.

You cannot receive compensation for care of a child under 8 months of age if the parent that is home with the child becomes to sick that he or she cannot take care of the child. However, you can instead take out regular parental benefits.

There are certain situations where you can receive temporary parental benefit (vab) for a child younger than 8 months. This applies if

  • the child is in hospital
  • the child has a permanent place in child care and you need to stay home from your work to care for the child

You can receive compensation for the care of a child who is older than 12 but younger than 16 if the child needs more help than usual at that age.

For example, if

  • you need to accompany the child to a doctor's appointment
  • an otherwise healthy child falls ill and cannot manage him or herself
  • the basic illness worsens in a child with a prolonged illness or disability
  • a child with a prolonged illness or disability becomes acutely ill with a different illness

If your child has a prolonged illness or disability, you can contact us and we will decide in advance if you can receive compensation for the care of the child.

If you receive childcare allowance, you cannot receive compensation for care of a child for the same care.

Do I need a doctor's certificate?

If you are caring for a child to accompany him or her to a doctor's appointment, it suffices for the doctor to write on your doctor's receipt that it was necessary for you to accompany the child.

If you are caring for a child to be home with a sick child, you need a doctor's statement on the child's condition.

You must have a doctor’s statement from the first day you are home.

When it comes to compensation to care for a sick child (vab), the same rules apply as for all children until the child is 18 years of age.

If you child is at least 16 years old but not yet 21, you can also receive compensation to care for a sick child (vab) if

  • the child’s basic illness worsens
  • the child becomes acutely ill with another illness.

You cannot receive compensation for caring for a sick child if

  • you already receive childcare allowance for the need of supervision and care
  • the child's ordinary caregiver is sick or infected.

You can also receive compensation for contact days up until the day before the child turns 16 You can take contact days if you, for example, will be participating in a parent education course, visiting the child’s preschool or school, or participating in an activity arranged by the preschool or school.

Read more about contact days here

If your child is 21 or older and is attending a special school at the upper-secondary level or has a severe physical disability and is attending a special upper-secondary school, you can receive temporary parental benefit up through the end of the spring semester the year the child turns 23 years of age.

No. We generally do not allow for one parent to collect temporary parental benefit to care for a sick child while the other parent is on parental leave for a different child. If there are special circumstances that require both of you to be home, then the other parent must indicate the circumstances in their application for temporary parental benefit. Försäkringskassan will then assess whether it can be approved in your particular case. 

You are insured in Sweden if you live or work here.

However, there are some exceptions to this rule. You can work in another country and still be insured in Sweden. There are also situations in which you can work in Sweden but be insured in another country. Call the Customer Centre at 0771-524 524 to learn what applies if you:

  • work as a sailor
  • are assigned to work in another country by a Swedish employer or are assigned to work in Sweden by a foreign employer
  • are a diplomat
  • work in two or more countries
  • are a civil servant of an administration that belongs to Sweden but work in another country

You receive a maximum of 120 days per child and year.