Skip to Content

Permanent residence permit

A permanent residence permit is valid until further notice. In other words, its period of validity is not limited. You may get a permanent residence permit if:

  • you have lived in Finland continuously for four years with a continuous residence permit (the A permit); and
  • the requirements for granting a continuous residence permit still exist.

The time period of four years begins:

  • on the day of your entry into Finland if you had a continuous residence permit when you came to Finland; or
  • on the first day of your first continuous residence permit if you applied for the permit in Finland; or
  • on the day of your entry into Finland if you have been granted a continuous residence permit on the basis of refugee status or subsidiary protection.

If you have not yet been in Finland for four years, you may apply for a new fixed-term residence permit (extended permit).

In order to get a permanent residence permit, you need to be able to get a continuous residence permit

The Finnish Immigration Service can only grant you a permanent residence permit if you have the grounds and meet the requirements for a continuous residence permit (the A permit). In most cases, your grounds for a permanent residence permit are the same as they were for your previous, continuous residence permit.

Alternatively, you can apply for permanent residence permit on new grounds. Remember that you need to meet the requirements for the residence permit for which you apply. You may for example get a permanent residence permit on the grounds of family or work.

A permanent residence permit can be refused if you have committed crimes. Read more about the effect of crime on getting a permanent residence permit.

You can only apply for a permanent residence permit in Finland

If you submit your application abroad, your application will be processed as an application for a first residence permit. The application will be subject to a processing fee for a first permit.

Your continuous residence permit must still be valid when you apply for a permanent residence permit

Apply for a permanent residence permit before your previous residence permit expires. Please reserve some time for the processing of your application and your visit to a service point of the Finnish Immigration Service. Do not apply for a permanent residence permit before you are only three months away from completing your four-year period of residence. If you apply earlier, we may not necessarily be able to assess whether you meet the requirements for a permanent residence permit. In this case, we would be unable to grant you a permanent residence permit.

If you only apply for a permanent residence permit after your previous residence permit has expired, you cannot get a permanent residence permit. In such a case, you may however apply for a new extended permit.

You may legally reside in Finland during the processing of your application and the possible appeal process. If the Finnish Immigration Service does not grant you a permanent residence permit, we will nonetheless consider whether we could grant you a new extended permit.

Right to work

Whether you are allowed to work while your application is being processed depends on the grounds on which your previous residence permit was granted to you. If you only apply for a permanent residence permit after your previous residence permit has expired, you are not allowed to continue working. Read more about the right to work while your permanent residence permit application is being processed.

After you get a permanent residence permit, you have an unrestricted right to work.

EU residence permit

A long-term resident’s EU residence permit issued to a third-country national is also a permanent permit that is valid until further notice.

You may get an EU residence permit after you have lived in Finland for five years without interruption. You must have secure means of support regardless of the grounds on which you apply for an EU residence permit. Read more about the requirements and application for an EU residence permit.

Right of permanent residence of EU citizens and their family members

An EU citizen has the right of permanent residence in Finland after he or she has legally resided in Finland for an uninterrupted period of five years. A family member of an EU citizen has the right of permanent residence in Finland after he or she has legally resided in Finland with the EU citizen in question for an uninterrupted period of five years.

New residence permit card from a service point

If you already have a permanent residence permit but your residence permit card expires, is broken or gets lost, do not apply for a new permanent residence permit. Instead, you need a new residence permit card. Read the instructions for applying for a new card before you visit a service point of the Finnish Immigration Service.

Application process when you are applying for a permanent residence permit

Menu