Need-based study allowance

A need-based study allowance can be applied for by a student (except doctoral student)

  • who is an Estonian citizen or is staying in Estonia on the basis of a long-term or temporary residence permit or on the basis of a permanent or temporary right of residence. From academic year 2022/2023 need-based study allowance cannot be applied for by students who study in Estonia on the basis of temporary residence permit (TRP) for studies (students from outside EU). The holders of temporary protection in Estonia are exempted from this restriction and they can still apply for need-based study allowance;
  • who is not on academic leave;
  • who studies full-time and completes the curriculum’s requirements to at least 75% or studies full-time in the first semester;
  • whose family’s monthly income per family member is below 756,38 euros.
  • Students up to 24 years old and
    • the parents of the student;
    • minor siblings and half-siblings of the student;
    • up to 24-year-old (inclusive) siblings and half-siblings who are either pupils or students.
  • 25-year-old and older students are considered a separate family.
  • A student and his/her legal spouse and/or children if the student is married or a parent or guardian of a child, no matter the student’s age.

There are three different sizes of need-based study allowance: 150, 270 and 440 euros per month. The receipt and amount of the allowance depends on the average income of the student and their family members in the previous calendar year. The family’s average income is calculated on the basis of taxable income (gross income is taken into account) in the calendar year preceding the academic year of applying for the allowance. For the 2023/24 academic year, the taxable income taken into account is from 2022 (January to December).

If the monthly income is up to 189.10 euros, you are eligible for a need-based study allowance of 440 euros per month; if the monthly income is 189.11 to 378.19 euros, you are eligible for an allowance of 270 euros per month; and if the monthly income is 378.20 to 756.38 euros, you are eligible for an allowance of 150 euros per month. You are not eligible for this allowance if the monthly income per family member exceeds 756,38 euros.

  • International students, please be aware that in order to be eligible for the allowances, which you would apply for through the state portal, an Estonian ID-code (isikukood) is needed and must be present in SIS. If it is not present, please send your Estonian ID-code to the Office of Academic Affairs:
  • You need to have registered your place of residence;
  • To apply for the allowance, you have to submit an application on the Estonian education portal The state portal lacks details of student’s family members and their income (unless student has registered as tax-resident during the required period), therefore you will need to upload the relevant documents:
    • Document proving the current composition of your family - an official and comprehensive list of your family members on one piece of paper, issued by an official institution (generally, no birth certificates or parents’ marriage certificates are required or approved). This document is also necessary if you are 25 and older. The only occasion on which this document is not required is if you are married and without children, in which case the document can be replaced by your marriage certificate.
    • Documents confirming the income of you and each of your adult (18 and above) family members over the previous calendar year (for who is considered a family member, see above). These documents must be issued by a public institution, for example the tax office if your country (generally, no salary extracts from your employer, etc., are asked or approved). If you were a tax-resident in Estonia during the previous year, you can request this data from the Estonian Tax and Customs Board. The document must include the whole year, from January to December. For example for the 2023/2024 academic year, the income documents need to cover 2022.
    • If you are considered to belong to the same family as your parents (see description above) and your up to 24-year old sibling is currently studying, a certificate of his/her enrolment is needed.
    • The Ukrainian students who are holders of temporary protection in Estonia are not required to provide the family composition and income documents if they can not receive those documents form Ukraine due to the current complicated situation. In this case they are allowed to submit a document describing the family composition and income in a free format.
  • All non-English public documents need to be translated into English or Estonian by a translation bureau. Translations do not need to be affirmed by a notary. The authenticity of all public documents issued in a foreign country needs to be certified.
  • Upload all documents together with their translations to the education portal. An ID-card or mobile-ID can be used to log in to the portal.

Need-based study allowances are granted twice per academic year: for the autumn and spring semesters from the month of application (not retroactively) until the end of the semester. Applications can be submitted throughout the semester from September to June.

In the month of submission of the application, the allowance will be paid seven days after granting the application. Thereafter, the allowance will be paid within the first seven working days of each month. The allowance will be transferred to the bank account indicated by the student in the state portal.

The above is a general description based on Estonian laws and regulations, the decisions will be made by the state. If the state portal contains an error regarding the study load you have completed, please contact the university. With other questions relating to the allowance, please contact the Ministry of Education and Research.

Students whose family members’ monthly income has exceeded the established maximum limit (756,38 euros) per family member per month in the previous year, but the amount has decreased recently, have the possibility to apply for a need-based special allowance. For this, the student needs to follow the same procedure as described above and have received a negative decision on a need-based study allowance. NB! for a need-based special allowance you need to provide documentation of your family members’ income over the last 3 months, which must comply with the same requirements of authenticity certification (legalisation or apostille) as all other documents issued in a foreign country. Therefore, it might be easier for the applicant to acquire all the necessary documents at the same time.

Please be aware that the documents to be submitted must fully comply with the requirements set in relevant legislation, thus getting the requested documents from various countries is time-consuming.


Additional information

Information on the need-based study allowance can be found on the web page of the Ministry of Education and Research (currently available only in Estonian).

More info about the need-based study allowance: 

The payment and granting of the need-based study allowance is regulated in Estonia by the Study Allowances and Study Loans Act


Stipends and allowances main page