As of the 11th of June, 1999 the Agreement between the Republic of Latvia (LR) and Ukraine regarding cooperation within the field of social security has come into effect. The Agreement regulates a person’s social insurance and entitlement to certain benefits such as the unemployment benefit or social security benefit, if the person goes to work to another country. However, the Agreements biggest influence is upon the pension sector.
The Agreement concerns permanent residents of Latvia and Ukraine, who have accumulated insurance length according to the legislation of one or both contracting countries.
Each country determines the insurance length according to its own legislation and grants the pension only for its own periods of insurance. However, special provisions should be considered when defining an insurance length for periods until the 1st of January, 1991. The Agreement states that for employment or equivalent periods which have been accumulated within the territories of Latvia or Ukraine until the 1st of January, 1991, the pension is granted by the party in which the pension claimant is residing at the moment of the pension request. However, for employment or equivalent periods accumulated after the 1st of January, 1991, the pension is granted by the party in whose territory the period has been accumulated.
Entitlement to receive a Ukrainian pension
Latvian residents can claim an old-age pension from Ukraine, if they have reached the set pension age in Ukraine, or if they are entitled to receiving a disablement, service or survivor’s pension for insurance periods in Ukraine, taking into account that all the necessary provisions for the pension granting have been fulfilled.
In order for a Latvian citizen to claim a pension for insurance periodsin Ukraine (after 01.01.1991), a person must go to any division of the State Social Insurance Agency (SSIA) and submit a pension claim, documents which certify employment or equivalent periods within the territories of Ukraine, as well as other documents which are necessary for the granting of the certain pension. The received claim and documents will be sent for review to the competent institution of Ukraine, which will make the appropriate decision. If a person’s insurance length in Ukraine is shorter than the required period stated in the legal provisions of Ukraine, then the insurance periods in Latvia will be used when deciding upon a person’s entitlement to a Ukrainian pension. However, the pension will be calculated only for the insurance periods in Ukraine.
If the Ukrainian insurance period (after 01.01.1991) is shorter than one year, then a person cannot claim for a Ukrainian pension.
If a Ukrainian pension is granted, it will be paid via the SSIA once every quarter. In the claim the person has to indicate their bank account in the LR credit institution or the postal payment system’s account numberwhere the pension should be transferred.
Entitlement to receive a Latvian pension
Latvian residents can claim an old-age pension from Latvia, if they have reached the set pension age in Latvia, or if they are entitled to receiving a disablement, service or survivor’s pension for insurance periods in Latvia, taking into account that all the necessary provisions for the pension granting have been fulfilled.
According to the provisions of the Agreement, employment or equivalent periods in Ukraine (until 01.01.1991) are included in the Latvian insurance length. A Latvian pension is granted, if the Latvian insurance length is sufficient enough to receive entitlement to a Latvian pension taking into account only this length and all of the necessary provisions for the granting of a pension have also been fulfilled. Moreover, upon granting a Latvian pension, the provision which states that another country’s pension has not already been granted for these periods, will be taken into account.
In its turn, if the Latvian insurance length is not sufficient enough to grant a Latvian pension, then summation of insurance periods, namely – also taking into account the accumulated insurance periods in Ukraine (after 01.01.1991) if they have been approved by the competent institution of Ukraine, can be used for determining the entitlement. The Latvian pension is only calculated for insurance periods in Latvia.
If the Latvian insurance period is shorter than one year, then a person cannot claim for a Latvian pension.
When deciding upon the insurance length for a person residing in Latvia, in cases when the Ukrainian insurance period (after 01.01.1991) is shorter than one year and this has been approved by the competent institution of Ukraine, then it is included in the Latvian insurance length for which a Latvian pension is granted.
Ukrainian citizens can also apply for a Latvian pension, if they have accumulated employment or equivalent periodswithin the territory of Latvia and for these a pension has not been granted by Ukraine or another country. Ukrainian citizens should submit the pension claim and documents certifying the insurance length until the 1stof January, 1991 to the competent institution of Ukraine which will forward them to the SSIA for review. If a person will be entitled to a Latvian pension, it will be paid once every quarter via the competent institution of Ukraine which will transfer it to a person’s bank account in the Ukrainian credit institution.
Payment of a pension in cases of residential change
The regulations of the Agreement state that after a pension claimant has permanently moved to Ukraine, he/she is still going to continue receiving their Latvian pension via the Ukrainian competent institution. In order to receive a pension in Ukraine, the pension claimant should submit a claim for receiving a Latvian pension in Ukraineto the SSIA, before departing from Latvia. Upon arrival in Ukraine, the person should declare and submit an application to the institution, stating their new address and bank account in the Ukrainian credit institution where they will receive the Latvian pension. However, persons residing in Ukraine are not entitled to receiving the granted (until the 31st December, 2011) additional payment to Latvian old-age or disablement pensions for the insurance length until the 31st December, 1995. Therefore, upon residential change the additional payments will be discontinued.
If a Ukrainian pension recipient permanently moves to Latvia, then the Ukrainian competent institution will continue to pay their granted pension via the SSIA.