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2022. June 2.

Decision 13/2022 (VI. 2.) AB on on establishing a constitutional requirement

Decision number: IV/03356/2021
Subject of the case:

Constitutional complaint aimed at establishing the lack of conformity with the Fundamental Law and annulling the text “directly” in the first phrase of Section 1 (2) 3) of the Act CXCI of 2011 on the Benefits for Persons of Altered Working Ability and on the Amendment of Certain Acts (invalidity benefit)

The Constitutional Court has held that in the case of persons with an altered working ability, it is a constitutional requirement that, when determining the average monthly earnings, the law does not exclude taking into account the period during which the person received benefits – not available at the same time as sickness benefit or accident benefit – based on insurance relationship that also fall in the scope of the cash benefits of health insurance and providing an entitlement to use sickness benefit or accident benefit, provided that he or she would be entitled to those cash benefits. In the case underlying the proceedings, the petitioner received sick pay because of her pregnancy and, after the birth of her child, she received a baby-care allowance (CSED) and childcare allowance (GYED). After leaving the civil service, she applied to the competent government office for benefits for persons with reduced working capacity. The government office issued a decision awarding disability benefits. The petitioner initiated a judicial review of the decision, requesting a change in the amount of the benefit, on the grounds that in her case she had received sickness benefits before CSED and GYED, and therefore the authority should have calculated her average monthly income based on the income data of the previous period and from that the amount of the disability benefit. The Debrecen Regional Court’s judgement dismissed the action. According to the petition, the contested provision infringes the right to property, the requirement of equal treatment and the right to social security. The Constitutional Court ruled that in the case of receiving cash benefits of the health insurance other than sickness and accident benefit (CSED, GYED, adoption allowance), the contested provision of the law does not prohibit the taking into account of income earned in the period preceding the receipt of these benefits, but is merely silent on this issue. The Constitutional Court explained that in fact the provision could be interpreted as not distinguishing in the determination of the average monthly income between persons receiving certain cash benefits under health insurance, in terms of the eligibility of the income prior to the payment of those benefits. In the Constitutional Court’s view, the constitutional requirement formulated adequately ensures that the application of the contested provision in all individual cases leads to a result in conformity with the Fundamental Law.