Real Estate and Relocation Co.

Guide for Living in Korea

National Pension

Under the national pension system operated by the government, citizens are requiredto pay pension premiums to prepare for their senior years, unexpected disabilities, and/or death. Pensions are also paid to beneficiaries or their families in the event of anemergency.

01 Qualifications

Foreign residents in Korea are required to subscribe to the national pension scheme, just like nativeKoreans. If a foreign resident between the ages of 18 and 60 works at a business, he/she becomes anemployee subscriber; in other situations, the foreign resident becomes a local subscriber. However, ifthe laws of the resident’s native country do not allow Koreans to subscribe to their pension scheme,the foreign resident cannot subscribe to the Korean national pension scheme. If there are any existingsocial security treaties between Korea and the native nation of the foreign resident, the rules of thetreaties are followed.

  • Those who are under the age of 18 years may become an employee subscriber if they work at a business and wish to subscribe.
Countries Excluded from the National Pension System (23 Countries)

Georgia, Nigeria, South Africa, Nepal, East Timor, Malaysia, Maldives, Myanmar, Bangladesh, Vietnam, Belarus, Brunei, Saudi Arabia, Swaziland, Singapore, Armenia, Ethiopia, Iran, Egypt, Cambodia, Tonga, Pakistan, Fiji

02 Amount of Pension

  • Employees and employers of businesses each pay 4.5% of the employee's monthly income into the pension plan.
  • Local subscribers (business owners, etc.) pay 9% of the reported income every month.

03 Benefits

If foreign residents meet the qualifications for pension benefits (old age, disability, or bereaved), theycan receive the respective pensions.

Old Age Pension

Anyone who has paid into the old age pension for ten years or longer may receive pension paymentupon reaching a certain age.

Age of Payment of Old Age Pension by Year of Birth
Age of Payment of Old Age Pension by Year of Birth
Disability Pension

When the recipient has satisfied the payment requirement for pension (age 18~before the age ofpayment of old age pension), if there is permanent (unresponsive to treatment) disease or injurythat has occurred during the period of subscription (one and a half years passes after the date offirst diagnosis if not completely treated), those who are in grade 1 to grade 3 will receive a pension,and those who are in grade 4 will receive lump-sum benefits.

Pension for Surviving Family

When an individual who has satisfied certain pension payment requirement dies, or a subscriberdies while subscribing to the pension or receiving pension benefits (old age, grade 1 to 2 disability),a monthly pension payment will be sent to surviving family members of the same household.

Lump-Sum Return

Lump-sum pensions are not typically awarded to foreign residents, but a lump-sum amount plusinterest is awarded in the following cases: when a foreign resident returns to his/her home country,dies, or turns 60 years of age. Lump-sum pensions may also be given in the following cases.

  1. 1When the foreign resident’s native country pays a lump-sum, equivalent to the returned amountfrom the national pension scheme to Korean citizens.
  2. 2When social security treaties between Korea and the foreign resident’s native country haverelated provisions on the payment of returned lump-sum.
  3. 3When a foreign resident has the status of E-8, E-9 or H-2
Countries with Lump-Sum Payments of National Pension (45 Countries)

Thailand, Philippines, Malaysia, Indonesia, Sri Lanka, Kazakhstan, Hong Kong, Belize, Grenada,St. Vincent and the Grenadines, Zimbabwe, Cameron, Ghana, Vanuatu, Bermuda, Sudan,El Salvador, Jordan, Kenya, Trinidad and Tobago, Bhutan, Colombia, Uganda and Tunisia.(24 countries for lump-sum payment based on reciprocity)

Germany, USA, Canada, Hungary, France, Australia, Czechoslovakia, Belgium, Poland, Slovakia,Bulgaria, Romania, Austria, India, Turkey, Switzerland, Brazil, Peru, Switzerland, Turkey, India,Luxemburg, Slovenia, and Croatia (21 countries for lump-sum payment based on social securityagreement)

  • Foreign residents with the status of E-8, E-9 or H-2 will receive payment regardless ofnationality. For detailed information, please visit a branch office of the National PensionService, call 1355, or visit the website of the National Pension Service (
본 저작물은 '한국건강가정진흥원'에서 '2020년' 작성하여 공공누리 제4유형으로 개방한 '한국생활가이드북'을 이용하였으며, 해당 저작물은 '한국건강가정진흥원,' 에서 무료로 다운받으실 수 있습니다.