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provided by the Translation and Terminology Centre for
information only; it confers no rights and imposes no
obligations separate from those conferred or imposed by
the legislation formally adopted and published. Only the
latter is authentic. The original Latvian text uses
masculine pronouns in the singular. The Translation and
Terminology Centre uses the principle of gender-neutral
language in its English translations. In addition,
gender-specific Latvian nouns have been translated as
gender-neutral terms, e.g. chairperson.
Text consolidated by Tulkošanas un terminoloģijas
centrs (Translation and Terminology Centre) with amending
1 December 2005.
If a whole or part of a
section has been amended, the date of the amending law
appears in square brackets at the end of the section. If
a whole section, paragraph or clause has been deleted,
the date of the deletion appears in square brackets
beside the deleted section, paragraph or clause.
The Saeima1 has adopted
and the President has proclaimed the following Law:
On Social Security
Section 1. Purpose of this Law
(1) This Law prescribes the principles for the structure and
operation of a social security system, the main social rights and
duties of a person, the basic conditions for its implementation
thereof, as well as regulating the types of social services,
including social and instructional assistance, and promoting
social fairness and social security. The Law promotes the
1) the opportunity to freely select employment and to earn the
necessary resources for life with one's work;
2) equal pre-conditions for the free development of each
3) family protection, support and development; and,
4) the overcoming or reduction of particular difficulties in
life, providing assistance and presenting opportunities for
(2) The purpose of the Law is to ensure that social services
are duly provided and that the authorities that are responsible
for the provision of services are easily accessible.
(3) In applying this Law and performing practical measures,
social rights shall be implemented to the fullest extent
(4) The social rights specified in Chapter II of this Law
shall be implemented in accordance with specific laws that
prescribe the scope of these rights and the procedures for
Section 2. Basic Principles of the
Operation of the Social Security System
The social security system shall operate in accordance with
the following basic principles:
1) the prohibition of differential treatment;
3) social insurance and assistance;
5) local government; and,
6) an individual approach.
[1 December 2005]
Section 2.1 Prohibition
of Differential Treatment
(1) In ensuring social services, differential treatment based
on a person's race, skin colour, gender, age, disability, state
of health, religious, political or other persuasion, national or
social origin, property or marital status or other circumstances
shall be prohibited.
(2) Differential treatment shall include the direct or
indirect discrimination of a person, infringement of a person or
an implication to discriminate thereof.
(3) Direct discrimination exists if in a comparable situation
the treatment towards a person associated with any of the
circumstances specified in Paragraph one of this Section is, was
or could be less favourable than towards another person.
(4) Indirect discrimination exists, if in a comparable
situation an evidently neutral provision, criteria or practice
creates or could create an unfavourable outcome for a person in
association with any of the circumstances specified in Paragraph
one of this Section.
(5) Infringement of a person within the meaning of this Law is
the exposure of a person to such undesirable actions from the
point of view of such person, that are associated with any of the
circumstances specified in Paragraph one of this Section, if the
aim of such an action or the result is an infringement of the
person's dignity and the creation of an intimidating, hostile,
derogatory, degrading or infringing environment.
(6) Differential treatment (excluding the infringement of a
person) associated with any of the circumstances specified in
Paragraph one of this Section shall only be acceptable in such
cases if such treatment is objectively justified with a legal
purpose, for the achievement of which the selected means are
[1 December 2005]
Section 3. Operation of the Law in
the Territory of Latvia
(1) The provisions of this Law shall be in force in relation
to all persons whose place of residence is the territory of
(2) The rights and duties of the social service sector
specified in this Law shall be substantiated, determined,
modifiable or revocable only in accordance with law.
Section 4. Promotion of Education
(1) A person who wishes to acquire an education that
corresponds with their interests and abilities has the right to
individual support for their education, if they themselves do not
have access to the necessary resources.
(2) A person who is working or wishes to work in paid
employment, has the right to the following:
1) a free consultation, on choosing an education and an
2) individual support for the continuation of vocational
3) assistance in the finding of a suitable workplace; and,
4) material security in the event of unemployment or the
insolvency of their employer.
Section 5. Social Insurance
(1) Everyone has the right to social insurance in accordance
(2) A person who is insured with social insurance institutions
has the right to the following:
1) measures that are necessary for the protection,
maintenance, improvement and rehabilitation of health and ability
2) material security in case of illness, pregnancy and
childbirth, disability and old age, as well as unemployment. In
case of the death of such a person the family members who were
formerly supported by him or her have the right to material
(3) The following shall be subject to mandatory social
1) persons that are in employment and receive remuneration for
2) self-employed persons;
3) representatives of the liberal professions; and,
4) unemployed persons.
(4) The range of persons, as well as types of insurance, for
whom these are mandatory, shall be prescribed by law.
Section 6. Right to Health Care
Everyone has the right to the minimum defined preventive and
curative health care that is prescribed by law.
Section 7. Social Guarantees
Associated with Particular Circumstances in the Case of Loss of
(1) A person whose health has deteriorated, if the cause for
the loss of health is associated with the fulfilment of State or
public duties, has the right to receive the following:
1) the necessary services for the maintenance, improvement and
rehabilitation of health and ability to work; and,
2) material security.
(2) If a person, on performing State or public duties, has
died, the family members that have formerly been supported by him
or her have the right to the appropriate material security.
Section 8. Reimbursement of Family
A person that supports and has to support children has the
right to partial reimbursement of the expenses that have arisen
due to this in accordance with law and other regulatory
Section 9. Benefit for the Ensuring
of a Suitable Apartment
Everyone has the right to a benefit to cover the expenses
associated with the ensuring of a suitable apartment or to a
relief from rental payments in accordance with law.
Section 10. Assistance for Children
Children and youths have the rights to a State benefit in
receiving services provided for them. These services should
promote the improvement of children and youths and shall support
their instruction in a family.
Section 11. Social Assistance
A person, who is unable by their own efforts to provide for
themselves or overcome particular difficulties in life and who
does not receive sufficient assistance from any other persons,
has the right to individual and material assistance, that
corresponds with their needs, provides the opportunity for
self-assistance and promotes their involvement in social
Section 12. Involvement of Disabled
Persons in Social Life
Disabled persons irrespective of the cause of disability and
persons with long-term or permanent loss of health have the right
to assistance as follows:
1) the performance of such measures that are associated with
involving these persons in social life, creating suitable working
conditions for them according to the ability to work and
interests of the relevant person thereof; and,
2) the improvement of the state of health, in creating such
circumstances and performing measures that would avert the
deterioration of health and promote the reduction of the degree
of loss of health and the ability to work.
Section 13. Social Services and
(1) Within the meaning of this Law social services are
measures that are ensured by State or local government monies or
material support or other type of service, in order to promote
the full implementation of a person's social rights.
(2) Social service providers shall use tax relief according to
the procedures specified by tax laws.
[1 December 2005]
Section 14. Duties of Social Service
(1) The duty of a social service provider is to ensure the
1) that everyone receives free consultations regarding their
social rights, their implementation and their duties thereof;
2) that everyone, who has the rights thereof, shall duly
receive the relevant social services and in their full extent;
3) that the requesting and receiving of social services is as
straightforward as possible.
(2) Social service providers shall co-operate with other
institutions in the interests of social service recipients.
Application of the Law in Providing Social Services
Section 15. Nullity of an Agreement
that Deteriorates the Position of a Person
Private legal agreements that do not correspond to this Law
and worsen the position of such a person that has rights to
social services shall not create legal consequences thereof.
Section 16. Protection of
(1) Everyone has the right to the non-disclosure of
information regarding their personal or material relations
received by a social service provider, excluding in those cases
prescribed by law.
(2) It is the duty of a social service provider to perform
technical and organisational measures, as well as develop the
official instructions that are necessary to fulfil the rights of
a person according to Paragraph one of this Section.
Section 17. Social Capacity to
(1) A person that has reached the age of 15 may submit a
request for social services and receive these. A social service
provider shall inform the parents, guardian or trustee regarding
the receipt of a request and the provision of services.
(2) If the parents, guardian or trustee wish to restrict the
receipt of social services, they shall submit a submission to the
social service provider thereof. For the retraction of the
request or refusal to receive social services, the agreement of
the parents, guardian or trustee shall be necessary.
Section 18. Creation of Rights
(1) The right to social services shall exist from the day that
the conditions provided for by law or other regulatory enactments
have set in.
(2) If the rights apply to social services, which in
accordance with law are provided following performance of an
evaluation and a decision taken by a social service provider, the
rights shall exist from the day that the decision has been taken
regarding the provision of services.
Section 19. Claims
(1) A claim for social services shall be submitted to the
relevant social service provider.
(2) It is the duty of the social service provider to ensure a
person with the opportunity to submit a clear and sound claim
and, if necessary, to expand on the information provided.
Section 20. Setting In of Time
A request for social services shall be satisfied from the
relevant day of the existence of the rights thereto, if the law
does not provide otherwise.
Section 21. Advances
(1) If a person has the right to monetary payments, but it is
anticipated that a longer period of time will be necessary to
define the amount thereof, a social service provider may pay an
advance, the amount of which shall be specified on the basis of
their own evaluation. An advance shall be paid if a person, who
has the right to a social service, requests it . An advance
payment shall be commenced within one month from the date of the
receipt of a claim.
(2) The advance paid shall be calculated in the amount of
monetary payments that a person is due. If the advance paid
exceeds the amount that a person is due, the overpaid amount
shall be reimbursed by the recipient.
(3) A social service provider may not request that the amount
overpaid be reimbursed, if he or she determines that the recovery
1) will not be possible or if the expenses associated with
this are disproportionate compared to the amount to be recovered;
2) would present particular difficulties to the recipient of
the social services.
Section 22. Prescription Period of
(1) The right to social services shall be maintained for three
years following the end of that calendar year in which they have
emerged. The provisions of Part IV of the Civil Law shall be
applied for the termination or suspension of this prescription
(2) The prescription period shall also be considered as
suspended if the social service provider is submitted the
1) a written request for social services;
2) the submission of a public prosecutor or a protest
regarding violation of a person's social rights or a warning
issued regarding the inadmissibility of the violation of a
person's social rights.
Section 23. Withdrawal from Social
(1) A person may withdraw from social services, by submitting
a written submission to the social service provider. This
submission may be recalled at any time.
(2) The withdrawal shall not be in effect if in association
with this difficulties arise for other persons or the social
service provider or if the law is being violated.
Section 24. Delivery of Monetary
(1) If other laws, that regulate social rights, do not provide
otherwise, money shall be transferred free of charge into the
recipient's account or, if the recipient requests, shall be
delivered free of charge to his or her place of residence.
(2) Money shall be delivered to the recipient of social
services from the budget of the social service provider.
Section 25. Deductions
A social service provider may perform deductions from monetary
payments according to the procedures specified by law, if thereby
the recipient of social services does not become a person for
whom social assistance is necessary.
Participation of a Person in the Implementation of His or Her
Section 26. Provision of
(1) A person that submits a request for social services or
receives these, has a duty to provide the complete information
necessary for the receipt of services and at the request of a
social service provider:
1) without delay notifies regarding changes to circumstances
that determine the receipt of social services or regarding those
for which in association with the receipt of services information
has been provided previously; and,
2) submits evidence and the necessary documents.
(2) If prepared forms are provided for the submission of the
information specified in Paragraph one of this Section, these
shall be used.
(3) The norms of this Section shall also apply to persons who
shall reimburse a social service provider with payments
(4) Refusal to provide information may be allowed if this
could cause suspicion regarding a crime or other type of unlawful
action committed by the information provider or his or her
relative of the first or second-degree or spouse.
Section 27. Appearance in Person
A person who wishes to receive or receives social services,
shall appear in person at the request of a social service
provider, to consider the request or perform measures that are
necessary for taking a decision regarding the provision of
Section 28. Undergoing a Medical
A person who wishes to receive or receives social services, at
the request of a social service provider, if this is necessary
for taking a decision, shall approach a doctor to perform a
Section 29. Subjection to Treatment
and Rehabilitation Measures
A person who wishes to receive or receives social services in
association with illness or disability, at the request of a
social service provider shall comply with treatment and
rehabilitation measures, if it is anticipated that this will
improve the state of health of the person referred to or avert
the deterioration thereof.
Section 30. Involvement in Measures
for Promoting Employment
A person who wishes to receive or receives social services
associated with a reduction in earning ability or unemployment,
at the request of a social service provider shall participate in
measures for the mastering or improvement of vocational skills
if, judging from this person's vocational aptitudes and
abilities, it is anticipated that these will promote or maintain
this person's earning ability or opportunity for taking up
Section 31. Extent of the
Participation of a Person
(1) The duties for the participation of a person provided for
in Sections 26-30 of this Law do not have to be fulfilled,
1) their implementation is not directly associated with the
requested social services;
2) their implementation cannot be requested from the relevant
person due to important reasons; or,
3) a social service provider can acquire the necessary
information with less expenditure of resources than the submitter
of a claim or a person who has rights to social services.
(2) A person may refuse a medical examination or
1) as a result of which a threat to health and life may occur;
2) the performance of which requires surgical
Section 32. The Consequences of
Non-Fulfilment of the Participation Duty
(1) If a person who wishes to receive or receives social
services does not fulfil the participation duties specified in
Sections 26-30 in bad faith, the social service provider may
completely or partially suspend the provision of social services
until the moment that these duties are fulfilled.
(2) If a participation duty is not fulfilled, the provision of
social services may be suspended or refused only if a person who
has claimed or receives social services has previously been
informed of this in writing and according to the time specified
in the warning has not fulfilled his or her participation
Section 33. Late Fulfilment of the
If a person is late in fulfilling participation duties and all
the circumstances necessary for the receipt of social services
exist, a social service provider may be late in providing
complete or partial services, the provision of which he or she
has refused or suspended in accordance with Section 32 of this
Section 34. Protection of Rights
(1) A person is entitled to dispute and appeal against the
decision of a social service provider according to the procedures
specified by the Administrative Procedure Law.
(2) It is prohibited to fine a person or otherwise directly or
indirectly create adverse consequences thereto because a person
by legal methods implements his or her protection of rights in
association with a violation of the prohibition of differential
[1 December 2005]
Informative Reference to European
This Law contains legal norms arising from:
1) Council Directive 2000/43/EC of 29 June 2000 implementing
the principle of equal treatment between persons irrespective of
racial or ethnic origin; and,
2) Council Directive 97/80/EC of 15 December 1997 on the
burden of proof in cases of discrimination based on sex.
This Law has been adopted by the Saeima on 7 September
President G. Ulmanis
Rīga, 21 September 1995
1 The Parliament of the Republic of
Translation © 2007 Tulkošanas un terminoloģijas
centrs (Translation and Terminology Centre)