Social Security Programs Throughout the World: Africa, 2011

 

Tunisia

Exchange rate: US$1.00 = 1.45 dinars.

Old Age, Disability, and Survivors

Regulatory Framework

First law: 1960.

Current laws: 1960 (nonagricultural workers), implemented in 1974; and 1995 (self-employed).

Type of program: Social insurance system.

Coverage

Private-sector employees from non-agricultural sectors.

Voluntary coverage for Tunisian workers employed abroad who are not covered by the host country or by a reciprocal agreement.

Exclusions: Prisoners working in prison workshops.

Special systems for civil servants, members of parliament, armed forces personnel, agricultural workers, farmers, self-employed persons, household workers, artists, and certain categories of fishermen and low-income earners.

Source of Funds

Insured person: 4.74% of gross earnings.

Contributions are paid quarterly.

The insured person's contributions finance all old-age, disability, and survivors benefits except the death grant and death allowance, which are financed under Sickness and Maternity.

Self-employed person: Not applicable.

Employer: 7.76% of gross payroll.

Contributions are paid quarterly.

The employer's contributions finance all old-age, disability, and survivors benefits except the death grant and death allowance, which are financed under Sickness and Maternity.

Government: None; the government subsidizes contributions to enhance economic activity in low-income areas and to encourage the employment of young graduates, persons with disabilities, and other categories of workers.

Government contributions finance all old-age, disability, and survivors benefits except the death grant and death allowance, which are financed under Sickness and Maternity.

Qualifying Conditions

Old-age pension: Age 60 with at least 120 months of contributions; age 50 with at least 180 months of contributions if prematurely aged due to arduous work, involuntarily unemployed for at least six months, or the mother of three or more children. Employment must cease.

Early pension: Age 55 with at least 360 months of contributions.

Partial pension: The insured must have 60 to 119 months of contributions at retirement.

If the insured has less than 60 months of contributions at retirement, the value of the insured's share of contributions is refunded.

Disability pension: The insured must be assessed with at least a 66.7% permanent loss of earning capacity and have at least 60 months of contributions. Employment must cease.

A medical commission assesses the degree of disability annually until the insured is aged 55.

Constant-attendance supplement: Paid if the insured requires the constant attendance of others to perform daily functions.

Survivor pension: The insured was a pensioner at the time of death or had at least 60 months of contributions.

Eligible survivors are the widow(er) and children younger than age 16 (age 21 if a student, age 25 if a student without a scholarship, no limit if disabled or an unmarried daughter without income).

Death grant: The insured had at least 50 days of employment in the last two quarters or 80 days in the last four quarters before death. The employment qualifying condition is waived if the death was the result of an accident.

Death allowance: Paid to the insured for the death of a spouse or dependent child. The insured must have had at least 50 days of employment in the last two quarters or 80 days of employment in the last four quarters.

Old-Age Benefits

Old-age pension: The pension is 40% of the insured's average earnings in the 10 years before retirement plus 0.5% of average earnings for each three-month period of contributions exceeding 120 months.

The minimum pension is 66.7% of the legal monthly minimum wage.

The maximum pension is 80% of average earnings. Average earnings cannot exceed six times the legal monthly minimum wage.

Early pension: The pension is reduced by 0.5% for each quarter that the pension is taken before age 60.

Partial pension: A reduced pension is paid in proportion to the insured's number of quarters of contributions.

The minimum partial pension is 50% of the legal monthly minimum wage.

The legal monthly minimum wage is 262 dinars.

If the insured has less than 60 months of contributions at retirement, a lump sum the value of the insured's contributions is paid.

The pension is paid monthly.

Benefit adjustment: Benefits are indexed to changes in the legal minimum wage. (The last adjustment was made in July 2010.) The legal minimum wage is adjusted by government decree, after consultation with labor unions and employers' representatives, according to changes in the cost of living.

Permanent Disability Benefits

Disability pension: The pension is 50% of the insured's average earnings in the last 10 years before the disability began plus 0.5% of average earnings for each three-month period of contributions exceeding 180 months.

The minimum pension is 66.7% of the legal monthly minimum wage.

The maximum pension is 80% of average earnings, up to six times the legal monthly minimum wage.

The legal monthly minimum wage is 262 dinars.

Constant-attendance supplement: 20% of the disability pension is paid.

The pension is paid monthly.

Benefit adjustment: Benefits are indexed to changes in the legal minimum wage. (The last adjustment was made in July 2010.) The legal minimum wage is adjusted by government decree, after consultation with labor unions and employers' representatives, according to changes in the cost of living.

Survivor Benefits

Survivor pension: 75% of the deceased's pension is paid to a widow(er) without a dependent child; 70% with one dependent child; or 50% with two or more dependent children.

The pension ceases if the surviving spouse remarries before age 55.

Orphan's pension: 30% of the deceased's pension is paid for one orphan or 50% for two or more orphans; 30% for one full orphan, 60% for two full orphans, 90% for three full orphans, or 100% for four or more full orphans.

All survivor benefits combined must not exceed 100% of the deceased's pension.

Benefits are paid monthly.

Benefit adjustment: Benefits are indexed to changes in the legal minimum wage. (The last adjustment was made in July 2010.) The legal minimum wage is adjusted by government decree, after consultation with labor unions and employers' representatives, according to changes in the cost of living.

Death grant: A lump sum of 12 times the deceased's monthly average earnings in the three or five years (whichever is greater) immediately prior to death plus one month of average earnings for each year of contributions, up to 18 months of earnings, is paid. The death grant is reduced by 50% for the death of a pensioner; the calculated amount is reduced to 40%, 30%, 20%, or 10% if the death occurs at age 70, age 75, age 80, or age 85, respectively. The average monthly earnings must not be more than six times the legal monthly minimum wage.

The legal monthly minimum wage is 262 dinars.

The minimum death grant is the legal annual minimum wage.

The legal annual minimum wage is 3,144 dinars.

Dependent child's supplement: A lump sum of 10% of the death grant is paid for each dependent child.

Death allowance: A lump sum of 10 to 90 days of the insured's sickness benefit is paid for the death of a dependent spouse or child. The daily sickness benefit is 66.7% of the insured's average daily earnings, up to twice the daily minimum wage.

Administrative Organization

Ministry of Social Affairs, Solidarity, and Tunisians Abroad (http://www.ijtimaia.tn) provides general supervision.

National Social Security Fund (http://www.cnss.nat.tn) administers the program through regional offices.

Sickness and Maternity

Regulatory Framework

First and current laws: 1960 and 2004.

Type of program: Social insurance system.

Coverage

Cash and medical benefits: Private- and public-sector employees from the agricultural and non-agricultural sectors, self-employed persons, artists, and fishermen.

Special systems for civil servants, members of parliament, and armed forces personnel.

Medical benefits only: Pensioners, interns, students, household workers, and construction workers.

Voluntary coverage for medical benefits for Tunisian workers employed abroad who are not covered by the host country or by a reciprocal agreement.

Source of Funds

Insured person: 2.75% of gross earnings; 4% for pensioners.

Contributions are paid quarterly.

The insured person's contributions finance all sickness and maternity benefits except parental leave, which is financed under Family Allowances. The insured person's contributions also finance the death grant and death allowance under Old Age, Disability, and Survivors.

Self-employed person: 6.75% of gross earnings.

Employer: 4% of gross payroll.

Contributions are paid quarterly.

The employer's contributions finance all sickness and maternity benefits except parental leave, which is financed under Family Allowances. The insured person's contributions also finance the death grant and death allowance under Old Age, Disability, and Survivors.

Government: None.

Qualifying Conditions

Cash sickness and medical benefits: The insured must have at least 50 days of covered employment in the last two quarters or 80 days of insured employment in the last four quarters. Long-term sickness (for a period greater than 180 days) must be certified by the medical commission.

Medical benefits are provided to the insured and the insured's spouse and dependent minor children (no limit if disabled), dependent parents, and unmarried daughters without income.

Cash maternity benefits: The insured must have at least 80 days of insured employment in the last four quarters.

Parental leave: Paid within the first seven days after childbirth.

Sickness and Maternity Benefits

Sickness benefit: The benefit is 66.7% of the average daily wage. Average daily wage cannot exceed twice the legal minimum daily wage. The benefit is paid after a five-day waiting period for up to 180 days. Benefits are paid every two weeks.

The average daily wage used to calculate benefits is based on the insured's highest quarter of earnings in the last four quarters before the incapacity began.

The legal daily minimum wage is 8,733 dinars.

There is no waiting period or limit to duration for hospitalization, recognized long-term illnesses, or for an incapacity that is the result of a nonwork-related accident. The benefit is 50% of the average daily wage, from the first day of the fourth year of sickness.

Maternity benefit: The benefit is 66.7% of the average daily wage. Average daily wage cannot exceed twice the legal daily minimum wage. The benefit is paid for 30 days and may be extended 15 days for complications arising from pregnancy or childbirth. Benefits are paid monthly.

The average daily wage used to calculate benefits is based on the insured's highest quarter of earnings in the last four quarters before the claim to benefits.

Parental leave: The benefit is the insured's average daily wage, calculated using the insured's last quarter earnings, and is paid for one day.

Workers' Medical Benefits

Insured persons can choose from three options: medical services provided by hospitals and clinics operated by the government, the social security system, or under contract with the National Health Insurance Fund; medical services coordinated by a private physician who is chosen by the insured person and under contract with the National Health Insurance Fund; or reimbursement by the National Health Insurance Fund for medical services provided by public or private health care providers according to a schedule in law.

Benefits include medical care, hospitalization, surgery, specialist care, laboratory services, kidney dialysis, appliances, and medicine.

Cost sharing is based on a schedule in law. The insured person's portion of the cost of medical services cannot exceed 1.5 times the insured's average salary or pension in the last calendar year.

Dependents' Medical Benefits

Medical benefits for dependents are the same as those for the insured.

Administrative Organization

Ministry of Social Affairs, Solidarity, and Tunisians Abroad (http://www.ijtimaia.tn) provides general supervision.

National Health Insurance Fund (http://www.cnam.nat.tn) administers the program through regional offices.

Work Injury

Regulatory Framework

First law: 1921.

Current law: 1994 and 2004.

Type of program: Social insurance system.

Coverage

All salaried employees, including casual, temporary, and household workers; members of cooperatives; fisherman; apprentices; students; and prisoners working in prison workshops.

Voluntary coverage for self-employed persons and artists.

Source of Funds

Insured person: None.

Self-employed person: Voluntary contributions only.

Employer: 0.4% to 4.0% of gross payroll, depending on the assessed degree of risk. (The contribution rate may be reduced, depending on the employer's reported accident rate.)

Contributions are paid quarterly.

Government: None; contributes as an employer.

Qualifying Conditions

Work injury benefits: There is no minimum qualifying period. Accidents that occur while commuting to and from work are covered.

Temporary Disability Benefits

The benefit is 66.7% of the insured's highest average daily wage in the highest quarter of the last four quarters before the disability began. The benefit is paid after a three-day waiting period (after one day if hospitalized) until full recovery or certification of permanent disability.

The average daily wage used to calculate benefits must not be lower than the legal daily minimum wage. The legal daily minimum wage is 8,733 dinars.

Permanent Disability Benefits

The monthly pension is the insured's annual earnings multiplied by 0.5 times the assessed degree of disability for the portion of disability between 15% and 50% and by 1.5 times the assessed degree of disability for the portion greater than 50%.

The annual earnings used to calculate benefits are four times the insured's highest quarterly salary in the last four quarters before the disability began. The annual earnings used to calculate benefits must not exceed six times the legal annual minimum wage. The legal annual minimum wage is 3,144 dinars.

The minimum pension is the legal monthly minimum wage. The legal monthly minimum wage is 262 dinars.

Constant-attendance supplement: If the insured requires the constant attendance of others to perform daily functions, 25% of the annual earnings used to calculate benefits is paid.

The permanent disability pension can be paid as a lump sum after a five-year period if the assessed degree of disability is 35% or less. The lump sum is calculated according to a schedule in law.

For an assessed disability of 5% to 15%, a lump sum is paid of 150% of the annual earnings used to calculate benefits multiplied by the assessed degree of disability.

If the insured is entitled to the old-age pension or the non-work-related disability pension and the work injury permanent disability pension, all benefits combined must not exceed the value of the annual earnings used to calculate the higher of the pensions.

Benefit adjustment: Benefits are adjusted by decree according to changes in wages.

Workers' Medical Benefits

Benefits include all necessary medical and surgical care, hospitalization, medicine, and appliances, according to a schedule in law.

Survivor Benefits

Survivor pension: 50% of the insured's annual earnings used to calculate the deceased's permanent disability pension is paid to a widow(er) without children; 40% if the surviving spouse has one or more children.

The pension ceases on remarriage.

Orphan's pension: 20% of the insured's annual earnings used to calculate the deceased's permanent disability pension is paid for one orphan, 30% for two, or 40% for three or more orphans; 50% for one full orphan, 60% for two, 70% for three, or 80% for four or more full orphans.

Orphans must be younger than age 16 (age 21 if a secondary or professional school student, age 25 if a university student, no limit if disabled or an unmarried daughter without income).

Other eligible survivors: If there is no surviving widow(er) or child, 20% of the insured's annual earnings used to calculate the deceased's permanent disability pension is paid for each dependent parent, grandparent, and grandchild, up to 50% of the annual earnings.

The annual earnings used to calculate benefits are four times the insured's highest quarterly salary in the last four quarters before the death occurs. The annual earnings used to calculate benefits must not exceed six times the legal annual minimum wage. The legal annual minimum wage is 3,144 dinars.

All survivor benefits combined must not exceed 80% of the deceased's earnings.

Benefit adjustment: Benefits are adjusted by decree according to changes in wages.

Funeral grant: One month of earnings is paid to the deceased's eligible survivors. The maximum grant is the legal monthly minimum wage. The legal monthly minimum wage is 262 dinars.

Administrative Organization

Ministry of Social Affairs, Solidarity, and Tunisians Abroad (http://www.ijtimaia.tn) provides general supervision.

National Health Insurance Fund (http://www.cnam.nat.tn) administers the program through regional offices.

Unemployment

Regulatory Framework

First law: 1982.

Current law: 1996 (workers' social protection), implemented in 1997.

Type of program: Social assistance system.

Coverage

All nonagricultural salaried employees.

Exclusions: Self-employed persons, agricultural workers, and household workers.

Source of Funds

Insured person: None.

Self-employed person: Not applicable.

Employer: None.

Government: None.

National Social Security Fund finances the cost of all unemployment benefits according to available resources.

Qualifying Conditions

Unemployment benefits: The insured must have paid at least 12 quarters of contributions to the National Social Security Fund and must be involuntarily unemployed, ineligible for an old-age pension or a disability pension, and registered at an employment office.

Unemployment Benefits

The benefit is one month of the insured's salary, up to the legal monthly minimum wage. The benefit is paid for up to 12 months.

The legal monthly minimum wage is 262 dinars.

Unemployed persons can also receive family allowances and supplements and have access to medical benefits for up to a year beginning on the first day after the end of the quarter in which employment ceased.

Administrative Organization

Ministry of Social Affairs, Solidarity, and Tunisians Abroad (http://www.ijtimaia.tn) provides general supervision.

National Social Security Fund (http://www.cnss.nat.tn) administers the program through regional offices.

Family Allowances

Regulatory Framework

First law: 1944.

Current laws: 1960, 1980 (family supplement), and 1994 (nursery school fees).

Type of program: Employment-related system.

Coverage

Private-sector employees, including casual and temporary workers; fishermen; members of agricultural cooperatives; employees of farms with 30 or more workers; students younger than age 28; and trainees of any age.

Exclusions: Self-employed persons, household workers, and employees of farms with fewer than 30 workers.

Special system for civil servants and armed forces personnel.

Source of Funds

Insured person: 0.89% of gross earnings.

Contributions are paid quarterly.

The insured person's contributions also finance parental leave provided under Sickness and Maternity.

Self-employed person: Not applicable.

Employer: 2.21% of gross payroll.

Contributions are paid quarterly.

The employer's contributions also finance parental leave provided under Sickness and Maternity.

Government: None.

Qualifying Conditions

Family allowances: The child must be younger than age 16 (age 18 if an apprentice, age 21 if a student or the insured's daughter providing care for her brothers and sisters, no limit if disabled). Allowances are paid for up to three children.

Family supplements: Paid to families with a nonworking spouse. The children must be eligible for family allowances.

Nursery school fees (means-tested): Paid to working mothers with monthly earnings of less than 2.5 times the legal minimum wage based on a working week of 48 hours. The child must be aged 2 months to 36 months and eligible to receive family allowances.

The legal monthly minimum wage is 262 dinars.

Family Allowance Benefits

Family allowances: 18% of the insured's earnings is paid for the first child, 16% for the second, and 14% for the third. The allowances are paid quarterly.

The maximum earnings used to calculate benefits are 122 dinars a quarter.

Family supplements: 9.37 dinars is paid for the first child, 18.75 dinars for two children, and 23.47 dinars for three children.

Nursery school fees (means-tested): 15 dinars a month is paid for up to 11 months for each eligible child.

Administrative Organization

Ministry of Social Affairs, Solidarity, and Tunisians Abroad (http://www.ijtimaia.tn) provides general supervision.

National Social Security Fund (http://www.cnss.nat.tn) administers the program through regional offices.