The entrepreneur's disease and the reduction of the basis for the amount of ZUS contributions


Every person running a business is required to pay ZUS contributions on this account. The entrepreneur's illness for a part or the whole month allows for a proportional reduction in the calculation basis of social security contributions. However, not everyone can take advantage of this right.

The amount of social security contributions

An entrepreneur who does not have any other social insurance title pays social security contributions (retirement, disability and accident insurance, sickness insurance is voluntary) and health insurance for each calendar month from a specified amount. In the case of social insurance, the basis may not be lower than:

  • 60% of the average monthly salary adopted to determine the annual limit of the calculation basis for old-age and disability pension insurance contributions (in 2021 - PLN 3,155.40)
  • 30% of the minimum wage for the first 24 months from the date of commencement of economic activity (in 2021 - PLN 840.00) → in the case of paying preferential ZUS contributions.

The basis for the health insurance contribution is 75% of the average wage. In 2020, it was PLN 4,026.01 (PLN 5,368.01 x 75%). The amount of the health insurance premium is 9% of the calculation basis, i.e. PLN 362.34. The health contribution for 2021 will be announced at the end of January.

Who can reduce the basis for ZUS?

Incapacity for work due to illness does not always relieve the insured person from paying contributions in full. The basis for calculating social insurance contributions for the period of illness may only be reduced by a person registered for voluntary sickness insurance, who is entitled to sickness benefit. This means that the sick leave itself and the entrepreneur's illness are not the only criteria for reducing ZUS contributions, it is primarily the right to sickness benefit.

The right to reduce the contribution base for the period of illness is not granted to persons who have declared a base higher than the minimum.

Art. 18 sec. 8a of the Act on the social insurance system
If the basis for assessing contributions for retirement and disability pension insurance is the declared amount, the declaration by the insured of an amount higher than the applicable minimum contribution basis means resignation from determining the basis for calculating contributions in the lowest amount and is not subject to adjustment by the insured for the month in which he declared the higher the amount of the contribution assessment base.

How can I reduce the basis for assessing contributions?

The proportional reduction of the lowest applicable basis for the calculation of social insurance contributions is made by dividing it by the number of calendar days of the month in which the disease occurred, and the obtained result is multiplied by the number of days when the entrepreneur was not on sick leave.

There is a possibility of reducing the contributions only when they are counted from the standard base. If the contributions are paid on a higher assessment basis, it is not possible to reduce them by submitting a correction of the settlement declaration.

Example 1.

In January 2021, Mr. Roman was on sick leave for 10 days. During this period, he used his preference in paying contributions. The reduction of the contribution assessment base for the period of sick leave should be calculated as follows:

PLN 840/31 calendar days in January x 10 days of illness = PLN 270.97

PLN 840 - PLN 270.97 = PLN 569.03.

The following contributions will be calculated on this basis: pension: 19.52%, disability pension: 8%, sickness: 2.45%, accident: 1.67%.

The principle of reducing the basis for assessing contributions due to the entrepreneur's illness does not apply in the case of health insurance. The health insurance contribution is indivisible, therefore it should always be paid in the full monthly amount.

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Illness of a full-time entrepreneur

In a situation where a person running a business is simultaneously employed on the basis of an employment contract and receives remuneration in the amount equal to or higher than the minimum wage, then only the health insurance premium is compulsorily paid from the conducted business activity, the basis of which is not subject to reduction. However, if the remuneration is lower, then he is required to pay compulsory business contributions. In such a case, in order to be able to reduce the basis for the calculation of social insurance contributions for the period of illness due to running a business, the condition of applying for voluntary sickness insurance must be met. If such a condition occurs, the entrepreneur will receive a sickness benefit for the period of incapacity for work, both for full-time employment and for running a business.

Joining the sickness insurance and the waiting period

If the entrepreneur decides to join the voluntary sickness insurance (he can do so at any time), he will be entitled to the benefit only after 90 days of uninterrupted payment of the premium for this insurance. It is worth emphasizing that when determining the 90-day waiting period for benefits, one should also take into account the previous periods of social insurance, if the break between them was not more than 30 days or resulted from unpaid leave, parental leave or active military service of a professional soldier.