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Backlogs in the processing of citizenship applications

Publication date 9.8.2022 8.30
Press release

There are still backlogs in the processing of citizenship applications. Approximately 19,000 applications are waiting for processing.

We are currently processing citizenship applications submitted in 2020 and 2021, when the number of applications was exceptionally high. Last year, the number of citizenship applications increased by 25% from the previous year. This year, the number of citizenship applications is lower than recent years, which shows in the processing queue with a delay.

The backlogs especially concern applications where we have to ask for additional information in order to process them. Additional information is needed especially if the application is missing required information or the applicant’s financial resources are unclear.

The processing time is shortest for applications where the customer has arrived in Finland with a permit obtained in advance, holds a national passport and meets the general requirements for naturalisation.

Make sure your passport and residence permit are valid

You must have a valid passport and residence permit to be granted Finnish citizenship. If your passport or residence permit is about to expire, renew it in time. The expiry of a passport or a residence permit is not considered a reason to expedite your citizenship application.

If you have not yet received a decision on your application, please wait patiently. We will contact you if additional information is needed for your application.

We understand that our decisions greatly impact our customers’ lives. Therefore, we are doing our best to process applications as efficiently as possible.

Why are there backlogs?

In recent years, we have received more citizenship applications than anticipated, and the number of employees processing these applications has thus been insufficient.

The war in Ukraine and residence permits for temporary protection do not affect the processing of citizenship applications. 

We are trying to clear the backlog by every means possible. We have employed more personnel to process citizenship applications. In addition, the processing of applications is expedited by means of automation, for example.

You can use the Processing Time Checker to check the expected processing time of your application. Please notice that the processing time shown in the Processing Time Checker is only an estimate.

If you have proved your identity at a service point in 2020, we will start processing your citizenship application by 31 December 2022. Most of these applications can be decided within a few months, that is, in the spring 2023 at the latest.

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