Pensions in Estonia

Working in Europe | Pension rights, Taxation/salaries, Unemployment | Estonia

Each EU country contributes to a person’s pension according to the amount of time they have worked in that country. Work in Estonia is added to the pensionable service from other countries if a person has worked in Estonia for at least one year. Estonia contributes to pensions for the time worked in Estonia.

The Estonian pension system is based on three pillars:

  • I pillar or state pension. This is the responsibility of the Social Insurance Board (Est Sotsiaalkindlustusamet)
  • II pillar or mandatory funded pension. This is the responsibility of the The State Pension Center (Est Pensionikeskus)
  • III pillar or supplementary funded pension. This is the responsibility of insurance companies and banks

The state old-age pension is appointed to permanent residents of Estonia and persons living in Estonia on the basis of a temporary residence permit. They will have the right to receive the state old age pension if they have pensionable service in Estonia or in another EU member country for at least 15 years. Work in another EU member country or in Norway, Liechtenstein, Iceland or Switzerland is taken into account if the person has worked in one of those countries for at least one year and has the necessary documents to prove it (i.e. employment contract).

In addition to the state pension, the Estonian pension scheme also includes a funded pension scheme and a voluntary supplementary pension scheme.

Joining the funded pension scheme is optional for persons born before 1983 and obligatory for persons born later than 1983. A person pays 2% her/himself for the funded pension (deductible from the gross salary by the employer), and the state adds 4% from the social tax paid by the person. Almost all such funds are associated with larger banks in Estonia (Pensionikeskus - list of mandatory pension funds).

Joining the supplementary funded pension scheme is voluntary. The amount of the contribution can be determined individually, as well as the period of receiving payments from the supplementary funded pension. Income tax from payments for the supplementary funded pension is refunded (see the chapter on taxation). It is also possible to continue payments to the supplementary funded pension from another country. Supplementarty pension funds are associated with larger banks in Estonia (Pensionikeskus - list of supplementary pension funds). It is possible to continue in Estonia to make payments to supplementary pension funds that you have established elsewhere.

The general retirement age for both men and women was 63 years before 1 January 2017. As of 1 January 2017 the retirement age started to rise gradually and will reach 65 years by 2026. The retirement age increases accoding to year of birth. 

Year of Birth Pensionable Age
1953 63 y
1954 63 y 3 months
1955 63 y 6 months
1956 63 y 9 months
1957 64 y
1958 64 y 3 months
1959 64 y 6 months
1960 64 y 9 months
1961 and later 65 y



Check your pension

You can check the status of your pension funds in your internet banking system.


See also:

State Portal - State Pensions

Estonian Ministry of Social Affairs - Social insurance and pension

Estonian Social Insurance Board - Pension, types of pension and benefits

Pensionikeskus - Estonian pension system Salary/Wage and Tax Calculator