Faroese social assistance

Johnér Masma

Social assistance in the Faroe Islands

If you live in the Faroe Islands and you need help to support yourself, and you have no other options for self-support, you can apply for financial support/social assistance. You can apply for social assistance even if you are not a Faroese (Danish) citizen. You must be legally resident in the Faroe Islands in order to be entitled to this financial support.

Social assistance is a temporary benefit intended to help you in situations where you need help to cover monthly expenses. Social assistance may be granted in situations where the applicant does not have sufficient resources, income or entitlement to other social security rights, such as unemployment benefit or sickness benefit.

What general conditions do you need to meet?

If you are legally resident in the Faroe Islands and are unable to support yourself, you may be entitled to benefits from Almannaverkið - the Faroe Islands Social Services. The benefit you may be entitled to depends, amongst other things, on your age, whether you live alone or with others, and whether you have dependants.

In order to be eligible for assistance, you must also meet the following conditions:

  • You must have experienced an event such as illness, unemployment or the termination of cohabitation.
  • This event has deprived you of the possibility of providing what is needed for yourself or your family, and you are not supported by others.
  • Your need for support cannot be covered by your own assets or other benefits, such as unemployment benefit or a pension.

What benefits are available?

Benefits under the Faroese Social Assistance Act vary in amount, depending on whether you have dependent children under 18, whether you live alone or with others, and whether you are over or under 25. Benefits can be paid to the following categories of people:

  • Non-cohabiting provider
  • Cohabiting provider
  • Non-cohabiting, aged 25 or over, without dependants
  • Cohabiting, aged 25 or over, without dependants
  • Person under 25 not living with parent
  • Person under 25 living with parent

What happens after you apply?

You must apply to Almannaverkið (Faroe Islands Social Services). Almannaverkið will usually invite you to an interview, so that, together, you can examine your need for help.

Can you obtain social assistance abroad?

It is not possible to receive Faroese social assistance while living outside the Faroe Islands. There are a few exceptions to this, for example when the stay abroad is arranged by a Faroese authority.

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