Social security for artists is regulated by the Labour Code and the Ordinance on Social Security of Persons who Practice a Liberal Profession and of the Bulgarian Citizens Working Abroad (2000). Under these laws, artists practising a liberal profession are treated equally with those who have registered companies as sole traders or partners in commercial corporations under the Commercial Code.
In both cases, the compulsory social security (last update as of 2019) contributions are:
• For people born before 1960 and operating as self-insured persons or companies, they pay a retirement insurance for all insurance risks of 23.3% of income of their choice. Those who are born after 1959 – 18.3%. The compulsory health insurance based on the income of their choice is 8%. The minimum income to be insured is BGN 560 (EUR 286) and the maximum income is BGN 3000 (EUR 1533). The statutory tax deductions are 60% of the declared income.
• Born before 1960, employed under a contract of employment and falling into category III labour (employees in a field with low work related risk) and their social security contribution, which includes a pension fund, general illness and maternity, and unemployment, the share is 24.3% of their income. For those born after 1959 the share is 19.3%. Compulsory health insurance based on the income on which they are insured is 8%, 4.8% is at the expense of the employer and 3.2% is personal.
Taking into consideration the unique nature of the work performed by artists, an amendment was made to the Transitional and Final Provisions of the Protection and Development of Culture Act (1999) which now entitles artists who have worked for at least four of the past twelve months (without entering into an employment relationship in artistic associations) to obtain unemployment benefits.