Widow's / Widower's Pensions

The following regulations regarding the widow’s/widower’s pension also apply to registered partner.

Widow's/widower's pensions

The widow’s/widower’s pension is calculated from the pension which the deceased (divorced) spouse was or would have been entitled to at the time of his/her death.

Entitlement from 0 % to 60 %

The rate of the widow’s*widower’s pension is between 0 and 60% of the pension to which the deceased was or would have been entitled at the time of death.

To establish the percentage, a calculation basis has to be formed; for this purpose the income of the deceased person and the income of the surviving dependant for the last two calendar years prior to the date of death of the insured person have to be taken into account, divided by 24.

In case the decrease in income of the deceased person was due to disease or unemployment during the last two calendar years, the income for the last four calendar years prior to the date of death must be considered to establish the calculation basis for the deceased person, divided by 48, if this has more advantages for the surviving dependant(s).


The following earnings are considered as income:

  • earnings from self-employment or employment (in Austria or abroad),
  • certain earnings for officials if the marginal amount of earnings is exceeded,
  • recurring cash benefits (gross) from state social security and unemployment insurance (e.g.pension, accident insurance, sickness benefit, unemployment benefit),
  • any other retirement or care benefits and similar pension benefits,
  • pension from foreign countries,
  • any income which is subject to Benefit Law or payment for office,
  • compensation vacation and any settlements thereof,
  • in case if the semi-retirement the amount of the contribution basis of the compulsoryinsurance and supplementary payments, if these are higher than the amount of the simultaneously received income,
  • administrative pensions and bridging payments based on social plans (or contribution basis of a simultaneously existing voluntary insurance, if these are higher than the income of the deceased person).

An increase of up to 60 %

Depending on the financial situation of the widow/widower, the entitlement of less than 60 % may be subject to an increase.

In the case that the amount of the widow’s/widower’s income or widow’s/widower’s pension – except for a possible increase for supplementary insurance – do not reach a specific minimum income (in year 2022: EUR 2.098,74), as long as the requirements are met, the percentage of the widow’s/widower’s pension will be increased to the extent that sum emerging from one’s own income and the widow’s/widower’s pension reaches the specific minimum income.It is allowed to increase the widow’s/widower’s pension only up to a maximum of 60 %.

A decrease to 0 %

If the sum of the spouse’s own pension and/or earned income together with the widow’s/widower’s pension exceeds the double monthly maximum contribution basis, the widow’s/widower’s pension will be reduced by the amount exceeding down to 0 %.

As of 1st January 2013, the double regulated maximum contribution basis from 2012 (value 2012 EUR 8.460,00) is applicable.

Under certain circumstances, 60 % of a specific increase contribution of the deceased (for possible supplementary insurance contributions) is to be added to the widow’s/widower’s pension.

Notification of any income changes

Increases or decreases in your own income can influence the change of the amount of your widow’s/widower’s pension. A new determination will initially be made ex officio if there is a change of income, but within the pension adjustment and upon a special request.

Widow's/widower's pensions for divorced persons

If not remarried, the divorced persons are entitled to a widow’s/widower’s pension as long as at the date of death of the insured person:

  • according to a court judgement,
  • according to a court settlement or
  • before the marriage was dissolved, according to a contract, hat to pay support or alimony, or
  • after divorce was official, until his/her death at least during the last years before the death, payed a regular support for the costs of living (entitlement to support based on the income levels) (duration of marriage for at least 10 years).

Limitation of support

The extent of the widow’s/widower’s pension to the divorced spouse is limited to the monthly support.

No limitation of support

However, as long as he/she has not remarried the widow’s/widower’s pension is due to the full extent, if

  • the divorce decree contains the sentence according to § 61 paragraph 3 of the Marriage Law (the party requesting divorce is solely or primarily guilty of the disruption of the marriage),
  • the marriage lasted for at least 15 years and
  • at the time the divorce enters into effect, the widow/widower is at least 40 years of age.

The requirement of being 40 years of age at the time the divorce came into effect no longer applies if the widow/widower is unable to work or is receiving an orphan’s pension for a child from the divorced marriage or adopted as a stepchild by both spouses and following her/his death the child has been living in a common household with the widow/widower. The requirement of a common household no longer applies if the child is born after the death of the father.


Continuation after limitation

If the widow’s/widower’s pension is only awarded up to 30 calendar months subsequent to the death of the insured person, you should bear in mind following information.

In case the survivor is disabled at the time of discontinuation he/she is still entitled to the pension for the period of disability. An application for continuation must be submitted no later than three months after discontinuation. An application submitted later than three months will be rejected. If you consider yourself to be disabled, we advise you to apply for a continuation of the widow’s/widower’s pension before the expiration of the 30 calendar month period.

Lump sum

In case of remarriage, a lump sum equivalent to 35 times the monthly pension benefit (without compensatory allowances) will be paid.

In case that a widow’s/widower’s pension has been rewarded for a limited period of time and the beneficiary has remarried, there is no entitlement to a lump sum settlement.

Reinstated entitlement

If the new spouse dies or the new marriage is divorced, dissolved or annulled, the former entitlement may be reinstated upon application on following conditions

  • the divorce or dissolution of marriage is not solely or predominantly the fault of the widow/widower;
  • the widow/widower is deemed not guilty for the annulment of marriage.

The entitlement will be continued at the first of the month after filing an application, however, at the earliest, two and a half years after the discontinuation of the previous pension payments.

For the reinstalment of the widow’s/widower’s pension, the widow’s/widower’s pension, support or income from the new marriage will be added, which the widow/widower is entitled to from the dissolved or annulled marriage and which he/she gets in addition. It is not possible to reinstate any temporarily awarded widow’s/widower’s pension.