Why is Umeå University introducing a fitness reimbursement?
The University's goal is to make it easier for employees to create good habits for improved health, as well as preventing illness, sick leave and work-related injuries. From of 2007, Umeå University offered discounted fitness cards as a health benefit. During the period 2012-2016, the number of active fitness cards was more than 1,500, and it reached its peak in 2014 with 1,950. Under the former agreement with USM, which started on 1 September 2016, the objective was to maintain the number of active fitness cards, but it was not realised. The number of active fitness cards decreased by more than 50 per cent.
In this context, the University decided to offer a fitness reimbursement instead. The assessment was that this may give more employees increased choice to individually customised fitness activities. One objective was to increase the number of employees participating in some form of fitness and exercise activity.
How large is the fitness reimbursement?
The maximum reimbursement you can claim for fitness activities is SEK 1,800 per year. You claim your reimbursement by scanning and submitting your original receipt or bank statements in case of direct debit payments (autogiro).
See Payment of the fitness reimbursement
Who can receive the fitness reimbursement?
- The fitness reimbursement applies to those who are employed on a full-time or part-time basis. When your employment ends, you no longer have the right to this health benefit.
- If you have a fixed-term contract, you will receive a fitness reimbursement in proportion to the length of employment.
- If you have an employment rate of 30% or below, you will receive a fitness reimbursement in proportion to your working hours per month.
- If you are on parental leave or on sick leave, you have the right to fitness reimbursement.
Who cannot receive the fitness reimbursement?
- The fitness reimbursement does not apply to those that are on full-time leave of absence.
- The fitness reimbursement does not apply to those that have received a scholarship to work at the University.
For what activities can I receive the fitness reimbursement?
You can receive fitness reimbursement for the activities that the Swedish Tax Agency have assessed as tax-free health benefits. Read more at the Swedish Tax Agency web site (in Swedish). If necessary, use Google Translate to get an idea of the content of this page.
If you perform any of the tax-free fitness activities, you will receive reimbursement for:
- Annual cards
- Term cards
- An activity that has at least five occasions
For what activities can I not receive the fitness reimbursement?
You will not receive fitness reimbursement for the activities that the Swedish Tax Agency has assessed as non-tax-free health benefits. Read more at the Swedish Tax Agency web site (in Swedish). If necessary, use Google Translate to get an idea of the content of this page.
You will also not receive fitness reimbursement for:
- One-time activities
- Individual entry fees in competitions
- Entry fees to sporting events
- Membership fees
- Purchase of gear or equipment
- Gift certificates
What do I need to do to receive my fitness reimbursement?
If you would like to make a fitness reimbursement claim, you will need to request compensation via PASS. Scan your original receipt or bank statements in case of direct debit payments (autogiro) and attach the files in PASS. The claim will be returned to you if you do not attach the required documents or if the scanned copies are not legible.
If you pay for a fitness activity by direct debit, you will receive reimbursement retroactively. You can only receive reimbursement on two occasions per year and must then present bank statements of your direct debit payments.
Direct debit is a payment in advance for the upcoming month, which means that a direct debit payment in August covers the monthly exercise and fitness activities for September. For example, if you want to receive fitness reimbursement for fitness activities during the period of September to December, you must submit the bank excerpts for your direct debit payments for the months of August to November.
10 December is an important date for those who want to claim reimbursement for fitness activities. 10 December is the date on which the salary administration should have received your correctly scanned receipt or bank statement in order for you to get fitness reimbursements in the current calendar year. Receipts submitted after 10 December will be registered as fitness reimbursements for the following year.
My workplace is in another city than Umeå – what should I do?
The same rules apply for the fitness reimbursement for all Umeå University employees; no matter where they are stationed.