Reader ‘s opinion Widow’s pensions already in payment will not change

The government’s draft proposal includes proposals to improve the situation of families with children and widows.

Markku Hänninen criticizes (HS Opinion 19.11.) the draft government proposal for changes in survivors’ pensions prepared by the Ministry of Social Affairs and Health and included in the opinion.

The opinion gave the impression that the draft proposal would not be based on sufficient expert information. However, this view can rightly be questioned. Several studies on the reform needs and options of the survivors’ pension system have been published prior to the preparation of the draft proposal.

The draft proposal of the Board was made in a working group in which, in addition to experts from the Ministry and the Finnish Center for Pensions, representatives of key stakeholders were represented. In the preparatory work, calculations of the effect of the presentation were made very comprehensively.

It did not appear from the opinion paper that the government’s draft proposal contained proposals to improve the situation of families with children and widows. The article also did not mention that the proposal does not affect the widows’ pensions in payment, and thus the widow’s pension does not end for anyone who is already receiving a widow’s pension.

The transition to a fixed-term widow’s pension has been mitigated so that the change does not apply to widows born before 1975. The proposal is based on long-term changes in Finnish society.

Hannu Ijäs

Director, Pension and Private Insurance Unit, Ministry of Social Affairs and Health

Reader opinions are speeches written by HS readers, selected and delivered by HS editorial. You can leave a comment or read the principles of writing at


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