Social Security Programs Throughout the World: The Americas, 2009

 

Saint Kitts and Nevis

Exchange rate: US$1.00 equals 2.70 East Caribbean dollars (EC$).

Old Age, Disability, and Survivors

Regulatory Framework

First law: 1968 (provident fund).

Current laws: 1977 (social security), implemented in 1978, with amendments; and 1998 (social assistance).

Type of program: Social insurance and social assistance system.

Coverage

Social insurance: Employed and self-employed persons aged 16 to 62, including public-sector employees and apprentices.

Voluntary coverage for those who cease compulsorily coverage but who have at least 2 years of contributions.

Exclusions: Unpaid family labor.

Special system for civil servants.

Social assistance: Elderly or disabled persons residing in Saint Kitts and Nevis.

Source of Funds

Social insurance

Insured person: 5% of weekly or monthly covered earnings (including voluntarily insured persons).

The maximum monthly earnings for contribution calculation purposes are EC$6,500.

The insured's contributions, except if voluntarily insured, also finance cash sickness and maternity benefits.

Self-employed person: 10% of monthly earnings, according to earnings categories ranging from EC$200 to EC$1,500 a week.

The self-employed person's contributions also finance cash sickness and maternity benefits.

Employer: 5% of monthly covered payroll.

The maximum monthly earnings for contribution calculation purposes are EC$6,500.

The employer's contributions also finance cash sickness and maternity benefits.

Government: Contributes as an employer.

Social assistance

Insured person: None.

Self-employed person: None.

Employer: None.

Government: The total cost.

Qualifying Conditions

Old-age pension (social insurance): Age 62 with at least 500 weeks of paid or credited contributions, including at least 150 weeks of paid contributions.

Old-age grant (social insurance): Age 62 with at least 50 weeks of paid or credited contributions but does not satisfy the qualifying conditions for the old-age pension.

Old-age benefits are payable abroad under specific conditions.

Old-age social assistance (means-tested): Older than age 62, not in gainful employment, and does not satisfy the qualifying conditions for the old-age pension.

Social assistance benefits are not payable abroad.

Disability pension (social insurance): Younger than age 62, assessed with a disability, and has at least 150 weeks of paid contributions.

The degree of disability is assessed by the Social Security Medical Board at least every 3 years or at any period according to the advice of a medical practitioner.

Disability benefits are payable abroad under specific conditions.

Disability social assistance (means-tested): Aged 16 to 62, assessed with a disability, and does not satisfy the qualifying conditions for the disability pension.

The degree of disability is assessed by the Social Security Medical Board at least every 3 years or at any period according to the advice of a medical practitioner.

Social assistance benefits are not payable abroad.

Survivor pension (social insurance): The deceased had at least 150 weeks of paid contributions or was receiving the old-age pension or disability pension.

Eligible survivors are a widow(er) who was married to or cohabited with the deceased for at least 3 years, orphans younger than age 16 (age 18 if a full-time student, no limit if disabled), and dependent parents.

The widow(er)'s pension ceases on remarriage or cohabitation.

Survivor benefits are payable abroad under specific conditions.

Survivor grant (social insurance): The deceased did not satisfy the qualifying conditions for a pension.

Eligible survivors are a widow(er) aged 45 or older who was married to or cohabited with the insured for at least 3 years and orphans younger than age 16 (age 18 if a full-time student, no limit if disabled).

Survivor benefits are payable abroad under specific conditions.

Funeral grant: The deceased had at least 26 weeks of paid contributions.

Old-Age Benefits

Old-age pension (social insurance): The monthly pension is 30% of the insured's average annual earnings plus 2% for each 50-week period of paid or credited contributions exceeding 500, up to 799, and 1% for each 50-week period of contributions exceeding 799; the sum is divided by 52.

Average annual earnings are based on earnings in the best 3 years of the last 15 years of contributions.

The minimum monthly pension is EC$400.

The maximum monthly pension is 60% of monthly earnings or EC$3,900 (whichever is less).

Old-age grant (social insurance): The grant is six times average weekly earnings for each 50-week period of paid or credited contributions, up to 499.

The insured person's contributions are refunded if they have less than 50 weeks of contributions.

Old-age social assistance (means-tested): The monthly pension is EC$250.

Permanent Disability Benefits

Disability pension: The monthly pension is 30% of the insured's average annual earnings plus 2% for each 50-week period of paid or credited contributions exceeding 500, up to 799, and 1% for each 50-week period of contributions exceeding 799; the sum is divided by 52.

Average annual earnings are based on earnings in the best 3 years of the last 15 years of contributions.

The benefit is paid after entitlement to 26 weeks of sickness benefit has ended or after the disability has lasted for at least 26 weeks, and is paid for as long as the disability continues.

The minimum monthly pension is EC$400.

The maximum monthly pension is 60% of monthly earnings or EC$3,900, whichever is less.

Disability social assistance (means-tested): The monthly pension is EC$250.

Survivor Benefits

Survivor pension: The pension is 50% of the pension the deceased received or would have been entitled to receive.

A limited pension is paid for a year if the widow(er) is younger than age 45 or was married to, or cohabited with, the deceased for less than 3 years.

The minimum monthly widow(er)'s pension is EC$200.

Orphan's pension: The pension is 16.7% of the pension the deceased received or would have been entitled to receive. If the orphan has a disability, the pension is 33.3% of the maximum family survivor pension.

The minimum monthly orphan's pension is EC$96.

Parent's pension: Up to 16.7% of the maximum family survivor pension is paid.

The minimum annual survivor pension is EC$720.

The maximum family survivor pension must not exceed 100% of the deceased's pension.

Survivor grant: The grant is six times the deceased's average weekly earnings for each 50-week period of paid or credited contributions.

The deceased's contributions are refunded if the deceased had less than 50 weeks of contributions.

Funeral grant: EC$2,500 is paid for the funeral of the insured or his or her spouse; up to EC$1,600 for a dependent child. The grant is paid to the person who pays for the funeral.

Administrative Organization

Social insurance: Ministry of Education, Youth Affairs, Information Technology, Labour and Social Security provides general supervision.

Social Security Board (http://www.socialsecurity.kn) administers the program.

Social assistance: Social Development Assistance Board administers the program.

Sickness and Maternity

Regulatory Framework

First and current law: 1977 (social security), with amendments.

Type of program: Social insurance system. Cash benefits only.

Coverage

Employed and self-employed persons aged 16 to 62.

Voluntary coverage is not possible.

Source of Funds

Insured person: See source of funds under Old Age, Disability, and Survivors, above.

Self-employed person: See source of funds under Old Age, Disability, and Survivors, above.

Employer: See source of funds under Old Age, Disability, and Survivors, above.

Government: None; contributes as an employer.

Qualifying Conditions

Cash sickness benefits: The insured must be younger than age 62, be employed the day before the incapacity began, and have at least 26 weeks of paid contributions including at least 8 in the 13 weeks before the incapacity began.

Cash maternity benefit: The insured must have at least 39 weeks of contributions, including at least 20 weeks immediately before making the claim.

Maternity grant: Paid to an insured woman or the wife of an insured man, with at least 39 weeks of contributions, including at least 20 in the 39 weeks before the expected date of childbirth.

Sickness and Maternity Benefits

Sickness benefit: The daily benefit is 65% of average weekly covered earnings divided by six and is paid retroactively from the first day if the incapacity lasts for 4 or more days. The benefit is paid for up to 26 weeks.

Maternity benefit: The daily benefit is 65% of average weekly covered earnings divided by six and is paid for 13 weeks, beginning up to 6 weeks before the expected date of childbirth.

Maternity grant: EC$450 is paid for each childbirth.

Workers' Medical Benefits

Medical benefits: No statutory benefits are provided.

Medical care is available at public hospitals and health centers.

Dependents' Medical Benefits

Medical benefits for dependents: No statutory benefits are provided.

Medical care is available at public hospitals and health centers.

Administrative Organization

Ministry of Education, Youth Affairs, Information Technology, Labour and Social Security provides general supervision.

Social Security Board (http://www.socialsecurity.kn) administers the program.

Work Injury

Regulatory Framework

First law: 1955 (workmen's compensation).

Current law: 1985 (social security), implemented in 1986.

Type of program: Social insurance system.

Coverage

Employed persons regardless of age.

Voluntary coverage is not possible.

Exclusions: Unpaid family labor and self-employed persons.

Source of Funds

Insured person: None.

Self-employed person: Not applicable.

Employer: 1% of covered payroll.

The maximum monthly earnings for contribution calculation purposes are EC$6,500.

Government: None; contributes as an employer.

Qualifying Conditions

Work injury benefits: There is no minimum qualifying period for a work injury or an occupational disease.

Temporary Disability Benefits

The benefit is 75% of average weekly covered earnings and is paid retroactively from the first day if the disability lasts for 4 or more days. The benefit is paid for up to 26 weeks.

Permanent Disability Benefits

Permanent disability benefit: If the insured has a total disability (100%), the pension is 75% of average weekly covered earnings.

The degree of disability is assessed and reviewed periodically by the Social Security Medical Board.

Constant-attendance supplement: Paid if the insured has a total disability and requires the constant attendance of others to perform daily functions. The supplement should meet the reasonable cost of care.

Partial disability: If the assessed degree of disability is at least 20%, a percentage of the full pension is paid according to the assessed degree of disability. If the assessed degree of disability is less than 20%, a disability grant is paid.

Workers' Medical Benefits

Benefits include the reimbursement of reasonable expenses for medical, surgical, dental, hospital, and nursing care; medicine; appliances; and transportation.

Survivor Benefits

Survivor pension: The widow(er)'s pension is 50% of the permanent total disability pension the deceased received or would have been entitled to receive.

Orphan's pension: Each child younger than age 16 (age 18 if a full-time student, no limit if disabled) receives up to 16.7% of 75% of the deceased's average weekly earnings.

Parent's pension: Up to 16.7% of the maximum family survivor pension is paid.

The maximum family survivor pension must not exceed 100% of the deceased's permanent total disability pension.

Funeral grant: If the insured's death was as a result of a work-related injury, EC$4,000 is paid to the person who paid for the funeral.

Administrative Organization

Ministry of Education, Youth Affairs, Information Technology, Labour and Social Security provides general supervision.

Social Security Board (http://www.socialsecurity.kn) administers the program.