Unemployment insurance is part of the compulsory social insurance system in Austria. It is administered by the Public Employment Service Austria (AMS) supervised by the Ministry of Labour, Social Affairs, Health and Consumer Protection.
Unemployment benefits consist of a basic sum, family supplement and various supplementary benefits. While in receipt of unemployment benefits you and your family members continue to be covered by health insurance.
The following applies for EU/EEA and Swiss nationals:
If you have already paid contributions in any EU/EEA country or Switzerland, this period will be taken into account for the fulfilment of the qualifying period and to determine the duration of the reference period, provided that you have been employed in Austria for at least one day and have paid the mandatory unemployment insurance prior to yourapplication for the unemployment benefits. After consultation with the public employment services of your country of origin you may under certain circumstances receive benefits from your country of origin for an approved period while already seeking employment in Austria. It is essential to register with your competent public employment service office prior to departure to Austria, stating that you are intending to seek employment in Austria. Under certain circumstances you may also be entitled to receive benefits attributable to insurance periods abroad.
- At least 52 weeks of contribution paying employment over the past 24 months from the point of application must be demonstrated (for persons over the age of 25 upon initial claim), or
- At least 28 weeks of contribution paying employment over the past year from the point of application must be demonstrated (applies to additional claims).
For third country nationals:
There are only five countries where bilateral agreements on social security include unemployment benefits: Bosnia & Herzegovina, Israel, Republic of Macedonia, North Montenegro and Serbia. Please note that in most cases the agreement only settles addition of insurance periods to determine the qualifying periods.
Please note that in the special case of educational leave(Bildungskarenz, minimum duration two months, maximum duration twelve months)no wages or salaries are paid. Instead, employees are entitled to an educational allowance from the Public Employment Service Austria (AMS) in the amount of the unemployment benefits they would have otherwise received. For more information please consult the brochure "Living and working in Austria".
Details at the Main Association of Social Security Institutions (Hauptverband der österreichischen Sozialversicherungsträger): www.hauptverband.at (in German)
Publication "Zwischenstaatliche Beziehungen Österreichs im Bereich der sozialen Sicherheit auf einen Blick" (.pdf, in German)
Guaranteed Minimum Resources
Guaranteed minimum resources (Mindestsicherung) are providedfor persons who haveno reasonable funds to pay for their living costs or those of their family members. Guaranteed minimum resources are intended to support individuals who can no longer pay for their living costs on their own. An amount stipulated every year corresponds to costs for covering the required costs of food, clothing, body care, heating and electricity, furnishings and other personal needs such as appropriate social andcultural involvement as well as housing needs. Guaranteed minimum resources benefits are only available when no other sufficient financial means (such as income, social security benefits, alimonies, etc.) or assets are available.
EU and EEA (European Economic Area) nationals, respectively, are only unrestrictedly entitled to guaranteed minimum resourcesif they are in Austria as employees or have lived here for more than five years. Nationals of third countries are only eligible to receive guaranteed minimum resources if theyhave been legally residing in Austria for more than five years. The amount of the guaranteed minimum resources will be determined individually by each federal province.
For personal assistance in the field of unemployment please contact the EURAXESS Centre: firstname.lastname@example.org