What is the SOVI?

The SOVI provides a pension to those workers who are not entitled to one under the current Social Security Institute system

The Statutory Old Age and Disability Insurance (SOVI) was the system used to protect workers before the current Social Security Institute system was introduced. Although it is an old system and obsolete in the vast majority of cases, it is still applied in the cases of old age, disability or widowhood for those workers who paid their quotas before 1967. 

Up to 2005, SOVI pensions were subject to a strict regime of incompatibilities. However, Article 4 of Act 3/2005 of March 18 establishes the following: “SOVI pensions are compatible with the extraordinary benefits paid to citizens of Spanish origin who were taken abroad during their infancy in the period between 18-07-1936 and 31-12-1939, as a result of the Civil War, and who have spent most of their life outside Spanish territory.” 

Additionally, in 2005 the publication of Act 9/2005 of 6 June specifically provided for the compatibility of SOVI pensions with the current Social Security Institute widow's pensions.

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SOVI pensions amount and application procedure

SOVI pensions are an inalienable, for-life and fixed amount financial assistance. The amount receivable in 2017 is set at 408.10 € a month in 14 payments, as long as there is no convergence with other benefits or it is a widow's pension, in which case it will be always this amount. 

In the case of receiving a SOVI pension for old age or disability, as well as the financial benefit awarded those persons of Spanish origin displaced during infancy as a result of the Civil War, additional benefits not considered concurrent may be added. These additional compatible benefits are also regulated by Act 3/2005 of March 18 and are as follows: 

  • The pensions received by the wounded able or disabled in the first degree due to the Civil War. 
  • Extraordinary pensions due to acts of terrorism
  • Support grants for third party.  If there are convergences with other pensions, the amount receivable for the SOVI pension for disability or old age is 396.20 € monthly in 14 payments. However, if the sum of all the concurrent pensions and that of the corresponding SOVI is lower than the amount set in 2016 for the concurrent pension, the SOVI pension will be increased to an amount equal to the resulting difference.

On the other hand, if there is concurrence with a Social Security Institute widow's pension, the sum of both pensions cannot be greater than twice the minimum pension for widowhood for people aged 65 and over. In 2017, this widow's pension is set at a minimum of 637.70 €. Thus, if the SOVI plus the pension in question totals more than 1,275.40 € a month, the amount of the SOVI pension will be reduced until it reaches that figure.

SOVI pensions can be applied for in any Social Security Institute Attention and Information Centre. The following documentation is necessary for this procedure:

  • DNI of the applicant. 
  • The Fiscal Identity Card of the applicant. 
  • The Family Book (containing family details for official use) or marriage certificate in the event of being married. 
  • Spouse's DNI and those of all family members aged over 14 who live with the applicant and are under their charge. 
  • The application form available from the following link

In additional to those documents, if the application is for a SOVI pension for widowhood, it will also be necessary to present the following documentation, in any of the following cases:

  • If you are separated or divorced: the judicial separation or divorce decree. 
  • If there is more than one beneficiary of the pension: certificate of cohabitation.

Requirements to receive a SOVI pension

In the case of the SOVI pension for old age, the requirements are as follows: 

  • Having reached the age of 65 years, or failing that, 60 if the old age is due to disability. Said disability must be permanent and fully impede the exercise of the normal profession. 
  • To not be eligible for any other benefit offered under the current Social Security Institute regimes. Except, of course, for the widow's pension of which they may be a beneficiary. 
  • To have been member of the Régimen de Retiro Obrero (Workers' Retirement Regime) or to have paid into the SOVI Regime for 1,800 days prior to 01/01/1967.

For the disability pension, the requirements are as follows: 

  • The disability must be permanent and absolute for the profession of the applicant and have been the cause of the cessation of work. 
  • That it is not the result of a work-related accident or compensable illness.
  • Proof of having paid into the SOVI for 1,800 days prior to 01/01/1967. 
  • To not be eligible for any other benefit from the current Social Security Institute. 
  • To have reached the age of 50 or, failing that, 30 if the disability is due to total immobility of the limbs, blindness or an incurable mental illness.
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In the event of a SOVI pension for widowhood, the requirements change depending on three suppositions:

  • A SOVI pensioner with death prior to 01/01/1967:
    • The causing person must have died after 01/01/1956. 
    • The applicant:
      • Must not be eligible for any other SOVI pension.
      • Be aged 65 at the time of the death. If you are aged 50 or over, the right to receive the pension will be maintained for you when you reach 65.
      • Have been married to the deceased for 10 years.
  • For a SOVI pensioner with death subsequent to 12/31/1966: the same requirements as for the Social Security Institute widow's pension.
  • A non-SOVI pensioner:
    • For the causing person:
      • Death after 01/01/1956.
      • To have been member of the Régimen de Retiro Obrero (Workers' Retirement Regime) or to have paid into the SOVI Regime for 1,800 days prior to 01/01/1967.
    • For the applicant: the same requirements as for pensioners deceased before 01/01/1967.

All the beneficiaries of the SOVI can choose BBVA to have their pension paid into a quality bank. By doing this you will benefit from interesting advantages such as no bank charges or commission-free credit cards.

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