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Special Schemes

Integration of the Special Agricultural Scheme into the General Scheme:

Employed agricultural workers included in the REA , as well as the employers to whom they provide their services, shall be included, from 01/01/12  onwards, in the General Social Security Scheme through the setting up of a special Scheme for said workers,  with entitlement to Social Security benefits under the same terms and conditions as in the General Scheme, with the particular conditions  provided for by law.

Integration of the Special Scheme for Domestic Employees into the General Scheme:

From 01/01/2012 onwards, the Special Scheme for Domestic Employees shall be included in the General Social Security Scheme, through the setting up of a special Scheme for said workers, who will be entitled to Social Security benefits under the same terms and conditions as in the General Scheme, with the particular conditions provided for by law. 

General Requirements

The general requirements for entitling workers to benefits under the Special Systems are as follows:

  • To be in registered employment or in a situation equivalent to registered employment in the corresponding System. However, workers can be entitled to a retirement pension while not being in registered employment provided they comply with the age and contribution requirements set.
  • To be up-to-date with payments for which workers are directly liable, even though the benefit is awarded due to the reciprocal sum of contributions in a salaried employee system.
    • For these purposes, the payment demand mechanism provided for in |art.  28.2 of Decree 2530/1970, passed on 20 August, will be applicable for whatever Social Security system to which the applicant may belong at the time of applying for the benefit or in the system said benefit is applied for.
    • When, by deferring settlement of the payments owed, the applicant is considered up-to-date with payments for the purposes of awarding a benefit and he subsequently fails to meet the deferred payment schedule or conditions, he will no longer be considered up-to-date with payments, and the benefit he was receiving will immediately be suspended, and it will only be resumed once the debt with the Social Security has been settled in full. To this end, the benefit Management Entity may deduct the corresponding deferred debt payment from the monthly amounts accrued by the claimant.
    • For the purposes of acknowledging a pension entitlement, the contributions corresponding to the month of the causal event of the pension and to the two months prior to that, payment of which does not yet appear on the Social Security information systems, will be considered paid and the worker will not have to provide documentary evidence of this, provided he accredits the minimum contribution period required, without counting these three months therein.
    • In these cases, every year, the Managing Entity will review all the pensions acknowledged in the previous year that were presumed up-to-date with payments to verify the timely and effective payment of these contributions. In the event that said contributions were not paid, the pension will be immediately suspended and the monthly pension payments will be retained to settle the contribution payments until they are fully paid off, whereupon pension payment will commence once again.

Special Scheme for Self-Employed Workers

The benefit is granted under the same terms and conditions as for the Social Security General Scheme, with the following particular conditions:

However, in certain special cases, those workers who have, over their working lives, contributed to Social Security Systems that acknowledge the right to early retirement may retire at below the ordinary age, provided that they meet certain requirements.

  • Base rate:

There is no gap integration. If, in the period taken into account for making the calculation, there were months during which there were no contribution obligations, said months will not be completed with the minimum bases in force for workers aged 18 or over.

Cases in which there is a reduction in the contribution bases:
The stipulations set forth in sections 2 and 3 of temporary provision no.5 of the General Law on Social Security is applicable to self-employed workers for whom a year has passed since their activity termination benefit regulated under Law 32/2010, passed on 5 August, expired, provided said termination took place after the worker reached 55 years of age, has been claimed based on the last activity performed prior to the event leading to the retirement pension.

In cases of payments being exonerated, the following rules will apply for the periods of activity when no contributions were paid, for the purposes of calculating the base pension:

  1. The contribution bases taken into account for determining the base rate will be equivalent to the result of increasing the average contribution bases of the previous calendar year to the start of the contribution exemption period, by the known average variation percentage in the CPI in the last specified year, without the bases calculated in this way being less than the minimum contribution basis fixed annually in the relevant General State Budget Act.
  2. To the effects of the calculation of this average the contribution bases will be taken corresponding to the self-employed activity for which the contribution is exonerated.
  3. If there were no contribution bases in any of the months of the calendar year previous to the start of the exoneration period, the average will be taken of the contribution bases that exist divided by the number of months to which they correspond.
  4. If there were no contribution bases in the previous year, the contribution bases of the first year in which they exist will be taken, calculating the aforementioned average in accordance with the rules mentioned in the sections above; this average will be increased by the average known variation percentage of the previous calendar year or years until the year corresponding to the period of exoneration from quotas is reached.
  • Percentage:

The year allowance scale, according to the age reached on 01/01/67 is not applicable for the purposes of calculating the number of years contributed.

    • Exemption from contributions:

      As from 01/01/2013, self-employed workers are exempt from paying contributions to the Social Security System provided they are in any of the following situations, except when due to temporary disability or for professional contingencies: 

      • 65 years of age and 38 years and 6 months contributed.

      • 67 years of age and 37 years contributed.

    The proportional parts of extra salary payments will not compute for these purposes. If, upon reaching the corresponding age the worker has not contributed the number of years required in each case, the exemption provided for in these cases will be applicable as of the date when the required number of years of contributed can be accredited in each case.

    For the periods of activity for which the worker has not contributed, as per section 1, to determine the base pension of the benefits exempt from contribution, the contribution bases for the monthly payments of each financial year exempt from contribution will be equivalent to the result of increasing the average of the contribution bases for the immediately preceding calendar year by the average percentage variation in the consumer price index in the last year indicated; the bases calculated in this way cannot be lower than the minimum or single contribution bases set every year in the General State Budget Act for self-employed workers included in the Special Social Security Systems referred to in the previous section.

    For workers for whom contribution exemptions were applied, provided for in additional provision no. 32 prior to 1 January 2013 and who are entitled to a retirement pension after said date, the period for which said exemptions have been applied will be considered as a period of paid contributions for the purposes of calculating the corresponding pension.

    Special Scheme for Coal Mining

    The benefit is recognised under the same terms and conditions as the General Social Security Regime, with the following particular features:


    • Age:

    The ordinary age required at any given time will go down by a period equivalent to the result of applying the corresponding coefficient to the period of time the individual has worked in each category and professional speciality in coal mining, in accordance with a scale of between 0.50 and 0.05, based on the hazard and toxicity of the activity undertaken.

    Workers under 60 years of age may only retire if their theoretical age (real age plus discounts) is over the minimum required. 

    Early retirement due to being a member of a mutual society: from the real age of 60, by applying differential coefficients, for workers who were covered by this special regime on 1-4-69 and who made contributions to one of the Coal Mining Mutual Societies on 31 March of that year or on any other prior date, or who made contributions to a Mutual Society for workers employed by another person before 1-1-67.

    • Base pension:

    This will be as applicable, but the contribution basis will be the standard basis.

    • Percentage:

    The period of time by which the retirement age of the worker is reduced will be counted as covered by contributions for the purposes of increasing the pension percentage for years of contributions.


    • Beneficiaries:

    Pensioners in receipt of Total Permanent Disability benefits in this Special Regime will be deemed to be in a situation similar to that of affiliated contributors when they meet the following requirements:

      • Those of the required real age at any given time or of the theoretical age reached by applying the corresponding coefficient to the period of time the individual actually worked in each of the coal mining categories, in accordance with the aforementioned scale. 
      • The Total Permanent Disability pension did not replace, by choice, the retirement pension that the interested party received from this Special Regime.
      • The payments for the period between the effective date of the Total Permanent Disability and that of the event which led to retirement must have been paid, including employer and employee contributions, deducting the sum of any payments which, during said period, were paid into this Special Regime on behalf of the interested party.
    • Base pension:

    It shall be determined by taking into account, for each of the months included, the base amount corresponding to the category or professional speciality in which the interested party worked when their Total Permanent Disability occurred.

    • Percentage:

    Contributions paid by the recipient between the effective date of the total permanent disability pension and the date of the event that led to retirement shall be calculated:

      • To determine the percentage applicable based on the number of years of contributions.
      • To calculate the minimum contribution period  required in order to be eligible for the pension.
    • More information on this Regime:

    Special Scheme for Seafarers

    The benefit is recognised under the same terms and  conditions as the  General Scheme, with the following particular features.

    • Age:

    In the Special Regime for the Sea there are coefficients that reduce the retirement age in certain jobs due to the harshness, arduous conditions, remoteness, etc. in which work at sea is carried out, and which make it possible to reduce the retirement age by up to 10 years, as a maximum, with respect to the ordinary retirement age.

    The reduction coefficients applied vary depending on the class of vessel, propulsion type and nature of the work:

      • Work on board Merchant Navy vessels: 0.40 to 0.20.
      • Work on board fishing vessels. 0.40 to 0.15.
      • Port stevedores: 0.30.
      • Shellfish, goose barnacles and seaweed gatherers: 0.15
      • Netters, neskatillas and balers: 0.15

      • Professional divers: 0.15

    The period of time by which the retirement age is reduced is considered as contributive, only in determining the percentage applicable to the base rate. Both the reduction in age and the calculation of this period as a percentage will be applicable, even though entitlement to the pension comes from another Social Security Scheme.

    Early retirement due to being a member of a mutual society: it is recognised under the same terms as in the General Scheme, although references to the effective date of the General Scheme (1-1-67) shall be understood as references to 1-8-70, the date of entry into force of the Special Scheme for Seafarers (REM).

    In the Special Scheme for Seafarers, as a transitional right, it is established that workers who had been registered in the Montepío Marítimo Nacional, Mutualidad Nacional de Previsión de los Pescadores de Bajura and Caja de Previsión de los Estibadores Portuarios (the National Mutual Insurance for Inshore Fishermen and the Port Stevedores' Provident Fund), on or before the date of entry into force of the Special Scheme for Sea Workers (1-8-1970) , and who in accordance with the regulations in force on that date, were entitled to obtain a retirement pension, from the age of 55 or 60 in the case of port dockworkers, will be entitled to a retirement pension from those ages, without prejudice to the percentage of the pension being reduced by seven hundredths for each year remaining before reaching the retirement age.

    Early retirement without being a member of a mutual insurance scheme: this is recognised under the same terms as in the General Scheme. However, in the Special Scheme for the Sea only employed persons are eligible for this type of retirement.

    • Base rate:

    It is calculated as per the General Scheme However, self-employed workers are not included in any contribution gaps that appear in the period to be taken into account for the calculation of the base rate.

    • Percentage:

    The period of time by which the worker's retirement age is reduced will be calculated as contributed to the effects of increasing the percentage of the pension by years of contribution.

    Early retirement due to membership in a mutual society:  The percentage of the corresponding base rate according to the number of contribution years will be reduced by the application of the following reduction coefficients:

      • If a worker is entitled to a pension on voluntary redundancy or if they have less than 38 years of contributions, regardless of the reason for employment termination, the amount of the pension shall be reduced by 7% for each year that, at the time of the causal event, they are short of the age of 65 years.
      • When the worker accredits 38 years or more of contributions and receives the pension due to termination of the employment contract for reasons not attributable to his/her free will, the percentages of reduction in the amount of the pension will be, depending on the years of contributions, as follows:
    Years of contribution Termination of employment and 38 or more years of contributions
    Between 38 and 39 years old 6.50%
    Aged 40 or over, 6.00%

    Early retirement without membership in a mutual society This type of retirement is granted under the same terms and conditions as in the General Scheme. However, in the Special Scheme for the Sea only employed persons are eligible for this type of retirement.

    More information on this Scheme:

    • Processing:
      Provincial and Local Directorates of the Social Marine Institute
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