Study leave means that the employee is released from the performance of his or her duties based on the employment contract in order to study or participate in training. The employment relationship remains in force during the study leave.

Studies do not have to be connected to the employer’s activities or the employee’s own job.  The employee can select the courses or training units on the basis of his or her own interests as long as they are publicly controlled.

When can I take study leave?

  • Every employee is entitled to study leave after a minimum of one year in full-time employment.
  • Employee is entitled to a maximum of two years of study leave within a period of five years, in one or more parts.
  • If the employment relationship has continued for a minimum of three months but less than a year, the employee is entitled to a maximum of 5-day study leave.
  • Study leave can only be taken from work which is the employee’s main source of livelihood.

What is the procedure to take study leave?

  • Study leave is based on the employee’s initiative.
  • If the intended study leave is longer than five working days, the employee must submit a written application to the employer at least 45 days prior to the intended leave.
  • If the length of the intended leave is less than five days, the notification period is 15 days prior to the intended leave. The employee and the employer can also agree on other arrangements.
  • Study leave is the employee’s right which the employer must grant but it can be delayed. The employer may delay the beginning of the leave by a maximum of 6 months at a time, if taking study leave in the intended time would cause significant harm to the employer. If the planned training takes place less often than every six months the employer may delay the study leave only until the next corresponding training starts. The employer may postpone the leave a maximum of two consecutive times if the employer employs more than five employees.
  • The employer shall inform the employee of the granting or postponing the study leave in writing at least 15 days prior to the beginning of training or studies if the intended leave’s duration exceeds five days. If the length of the leave is five days or less, the notification period is seven days prior to the beginning of training or studies.
  • Under certain conditions, the employee has the opportunity to postpone or interrupt the granted study leave.

Employment relationship during study leave

  • Employment relationship continues during study leave.
  • Employee may not be dismissed for taking study leave. However, an employee on study leave may be dismissed for justified dismissal grounds as stipulated by law.
  • Study leave is unpaid unless otherwise agreed with the employer.
  • Study leave days are considered equivalent to working days for the accrual of annual leave, for a maximum of 30 days during the holiday credit year provided that the employee returns to work after the leave.

Financial aid during study leave?

You may apply for adult education allowance during your studies on unpaid study leave. The allowance is granted by Education Fund which can be consulted for further information.
If the granting criteria of the adult education allowance is not met, the employee may apply for Kela’s study grant for the time of the study leave.