Disability benefits

In case it has been officially established that you cannot work for more than one year, you become incapacitated for work. The period of incapacity for work therefore starts from the second year of your incapacity for work.

As a salaried employee, you must be registered with a health insurance fund in the capacity of beneficiary. In Belgium, health insurance funds are entitled to pay medical care and benefits. More information can be found on the page How to affiliate to a health insurance fund of the National Institute for Sickness and Disability Insurance website (INAMI) (in French).

You must also:

  • have worked 180 days over a period of 1 year. Certain periods of inactivity, for example as a result of paid leave or sickness, are regarded as working days;
  • have paid the minimum social security contributions;
  • have been recognised as being incapacitated for work for at least 1 year.

For people who are self-employed, the following eligibility requirements apply:

  • you must have completed a waiting period of six months or be exempt from that waiting period;
  • you must be able to prove that you have paid enough social security contributions in a reference period prior to your incapacity for work in order to be entitled to benefits;
  • you must not have a gap of more than 30 days between the date when you became incapacitated for work and the last quarter (or equivalent period) for which you paid social security contributions or for which you were exempt from social security contributions;
  • you must have been incapacitated for work for at least 1 year.

The Medical Council for Disability (Geneeskundige raad voor invaliditeit - GRI / Conseil médical de l'invalidité - CMI), which is part of the National Institution for Health and Disability Insurance (INAMI) who decides whether or not a person is considered to be disabled and whether the period of disability should be extended in time. This assessment happens on the basis of a medical report by the health insurance fund physician.

This assessment is automatically carried out by the end of the first year of illness. That means you do not have to submit an application yourself.

Disability allowance is paid up to the end of the month in which you reach retirement age.

It stops being paid before that date if:

  • you are no longer considered disabled by the advising physician to the health insurance fund or the Medical Council for Disability of the INAMI;
  • you return to work or you register as being unemployed;
  • you pass away.


If you are an employee, the amount of the benefit depends on your family situation and the salary you were earning when you ceased your professional activity due to illness or an accident.

The daily allowance cannot be lower than a specific amount, which is set once a year.

If you are self-employed, you will receive a fixed allowance that varies according to your family situation. For the disability allowance, it is also checked whether or not your self-employed business will be continued during your incapacity for work.

The amount of the disability allowance is indexed.

More information about the amounts of disability benefits for employees can be found on the Amount and payment page of the INAMI website (in French).


The disability allowance is paid by your health insurance fund.

FPS Social Security

National Institute for Health and Disability Insurance (INAMI/RIZIV)

Contact the health insurance funds