[Updated 4/22/23] Slovenia has a comprehensive social security system, primarily covering retirement and healthcare. Employees contribute more to the system than employers. It is advised to consult with the employee before offering supplemental benefits because many employees do not wish to incur the expense. Perks, on the other hand, span a wide variety of options that employees do appreciate.
The average benefit cost for employers is about €1,500 – €1,800 per annum (including retirement contributions).
Mandatory employee benefits in Slovenia are part of the country’s comprehensive social security system, which includes pensions and healthcare. Supplementary employee benefits in Slovenia include voluntary pension plans, personal accident, and life insurance. In addition, supplemental health insurance is available, but it is not common for companies to provide it. Employee perks in the country include a fuel card, bonuses, meal subsidies, educational stipends, and mobile phones.
Mandatory Employee Benefits in Slovenia
Slovenia’s comprehensive social security system includes pensions and disability, health insurance and health care, unemployment insurance, parental insurance and family benefits, and social assistance. Both employees (total 22,10%) and employers (16,10%) pay (contributions and taxes) into social security.
Slovenia runs a three-tier pension system, with the first pillar as the PAYG scheme. The contribution rate for the public pension system is 24,35% of gross wages; employees pay 15,5%, employers contribute 8,85%, and the self-employed must cover the total amount.
The second pillar consists of mandatory occupational pensions for certain sectors (public service and banking sectors, as well as for particularly hazardous occupations) and voluntary for other private sectors (different versions of pension schemes).
Voluntary personal savings constitute the third pillar.
The compulsory health insurance (CHI) scheme covers the whole population based on employment, self-employment, or residence (insured person and their family members). The insured persons are guaranteed by the law the following: the payment of health services, sick pay during temporary absence from work, and the reimbursement of travel expenses tied to obtaining health services.
CHI does not always cover all healthcare services and does pay the full price. Full coverage applies to the following:
- All health programs for children and youth (children are completely covered up to 18)
- Students, as long as they attend school
- Family planning
- Occupational, malignant, and other diseases
- Medical services related to the donation and transplantation of tissues and organs
- Long-term nursing care
For all other services, compulsory health insurance covers a percentage of the full price for care. Individuals or a voluntary health insurance policy pays the difference.
Supplementary Employee Benefits in Slovenia
Voluntary supplementary pension plans may be established as collective insurance with an employer, who wholly or partially funds the insurance for all his employees, or by entering an individual retirement plan.
Employer’s contributions to supplementary pension funds are deductible for corporate and personal income tax and social security contributions. An employer paying the contributions to a pension plan can lower his tax base, and the contributions are not included in the base for Social Security contributions. Pension contributions from both the employer and the employee benefit from tax relief up to 5.844% of the employee’s gross wage and are capped at approximately €2,800 per year and employee. This maximum also includes premiums paid by the employee to individual pension schemes, with the employer having priority for tax relief.
For a plan to receive tax-favorable treatment, it must cover at least 51% of all employees of the sponsoring employer and be authorized by the Ministry of Labor.
The third pillar – Premiums paid from this pillar are subject to tax relive and preferences, which are lower than similar incentives of other occupational schemes. Tax incentives for individual pension insurance include only personal income tax relief, but not other social contributions, so due to mentioned reason, this pillar is not very common in Slovenia.
Voluntary health insurance can roughly be divided into supplementary and additional. supplementary insurance covers participation costs, and additional health insurance consists of various insurance products related to additional health care (specialist examinations, unstandardized dental care, rehabilitation costs after the accident, and hospital specialist activity).
It is not very common for companies to provide supplemental medical benefits; however, more companies are using this benefit to help retain employees. Currently, the HR talent pool itself is limited, so employers are using all necessary actions to keep and retain employees.
Other voluntary benefits available as insurance products in the market
Travel Health Insurance
Travel health insurance covers medical treatment costs during travel and stays abroad. Companies typically conclude this coverage only for business travel, with 93% of companies providing it.
Personal Accident Insurance
Other than the benefits provided by the social security system, some companies provide personal accident insurance with coverage for accident, death, and permanent disability as main coverages and in the form of an insurance policy. The employer typically covers the cost, and it is possible to cover family members through employee contributions.
Group life insurance products concluded by companies are, in most cases, without a saving component. Insurance beneficiaries in case of death can be a company or person (family members, etc.) The premium is a taxable expense for the company, but if a company is entitled as beneficiary, the payment is treated as company income. In this case, the tax base also increases in the payment year.
The most common perks as a part of typical employer benefit practices are the following:
- Company car – A company car is typical for management and other staff who require transportation to perform their work.
- Fuel card – Employees with a company car are entitled to a fuel card. The fuel card can be used only in Slovenia or other countries.
- Transportation Allowance – Fuel costs are compensated by the employer according to the applicable Law to employees not driving a company car (€ 0.21/km for an employee driving to work and back home; €.43/km for business trips).
- Bonus – Common bonuses to include in employment contracts are:
- The 13th salary is considered a regress (a financial payment to an employee for a vacation), and it is mandatory. What is important to know is that the gross is paid out as net up to the national average salary value. The government does not take any taxes, and the employee gets the full gross value. If you pass the limit, then employers and employees need to pay full tax.
- A Christmas bonus is more like a gratuity and not required by law, but the majority of employers give one. It is partially taxed, and if the amount is above the national average salary, it is fully taxed.
- Jubilee bonus, the amount usually depends on the length of service and can be mandatory based on terms set in collective bargaining agreements.
- Performance-based bonus
Twenty percent of all companies provide jubilee awards, and 59% provide service awards. Typical anniversary rewards are for 10, 20, or 30 years. The target payout is a % of the base salary linked to the pay grade. Jubilee awards are similar but may celebrate a special anniversary, such as 25 or 50 years.
- Meal Subsidy – €7.96 per working day (statutory program – max. amount)
- Discounted company products – 19% of companies allow for product discounts.
- Education – Most companies (81%) provide or assist with employee development through conferences and training courses.
- Mobile phones – Almost all companies (98%) provide mobile phones to employees.
In recent years, companies have begun offering their employees extra benefits, including flexible hours for working mothers, paternity leave, and study leave for work-related courses.
Slovenia launched a family-friendly enterprise certification scheme – Certifikat Družini prijazno podjetje – in 2007 in partnership with the non-profit Eqvilib Institute. The scheme is based on the European family audit system developed by Berufundfamilie in Germany and is also used in Austria, Italy, and Hungary.
The Family Friendly Enterprise certificate is based on the CSR principle of employee–management cooperation, emphasizing work-life balance. The FFE certificate is a long-term consultation process that provides positive effects beyond reconciling employees’ work and private life and reflects competitive advantages with positive economic impact for enterprises and long-term results for society. Over 250 Slovenian companies and organizations enter the certification, and certificate holders employ more than 70,000 workers.
This information about mandatory and supplemental employee benefits in Slovenia comes from Asinta’s Central and Eastern European Partner, the GrECo Group.