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Employer: An asylum seeker’s right to work will be temporarily extended if they work in the fields of agriculture, forestry, horticulture and fisheries

29.6.2020 16.27
Press release

The legislation on an asylum seeker’s right to work has been temporarily amended as of 29 June 2020. The act will remain in force until 31 October 2020. The amendment will temporarily extend an asylum seeker’s right to work in fields that offer seasonal work.

The amendment applies to work in fields offering seasonal work, i.e. in tasks in agriculture, forestry, horticulture or fisheries. Such tasks include, inter alia:

  • Working in agriculture, such as crop production, animal feed production and farm animal care.
  • Horticultural work on fields and in greenhouses.
  • Professional fishing and fish farming.
  • Foodstuff processing that takes place at farms
  • Forestation and sowing, work at forest nurseries and the tasks of felling, pruning, bucking up and measuring trees and forest haulage.

What has changed?

  • If the asylum seeker has applied for international protection before the law entered into force on 29/6/2020, they will immediately receive the right to work in the fields of agriculture, forestry, horticulture and fisheries. The asylum seeker does not have to wait for three or six months before they can start work in these fields. 
  • An asylum seeker’s right to work in the tasks of agriculture, forestry, horticulture and fisheries will continue as long as they are eligible to receive reception services. This means that an asylum seeker’s right to work will not end once their asylum application has been rejected and the decision becomes enforceable, i.e. when they can be removed from the country according to law. 
  • An asylum seeker can prove their right to work in the fields of agriculture, forestry, horticulture and fisheries to the employer by presenting a valid customer card of a reception centre.

The amendment does not apply to all asylum seekers 

The amendment does not apply to an asylum seeker whose situation is one of the following:

  • The asylum seeker does not work in the field of agriculture, forestry, horticulture or fisheries.
  • The asylum seeker has applied for asylum or submitted a renewal application after the law entered into force on 29/6/2020.
  • Please note that an asylum seeker’s right to work will not be resumed if it has already expired due to an enforceable decision to remove them from the country before the entry into force of the law on 29/6/2020.

If the amendment does not apply to the asylum seeker you are planning to employ, you can find more about an asylum seeker’s right to work on our website: : migri.fi/en/asylum-seeker-s-right-to-work.

An asylum seeker can prove that they have a right to work in seasonal work fields by presenting a reception centre customer card when the amendment is in force.

As an employer, it is your responsibility to ensure that the employee has the right to work in Finland. Similarly, the employee must inform you immediately if their right to work expires. 

During the period of validity of the law, an asylum seeker can prove their right to work in the fields of agriculture, forestry, horticulture or fisheries by presenting a valid reception centre customer card. The card will be valid until 31/10/2020. The card will also feature a sticker that indicates that the asylum seeker has the right to work in the fields of agriculture, forestry, horticulture or fisheries. The sticker will read: Kausityö 2020 and migri.fi/tyo-oikeus.

Please take note of the following in the reception centre customer card

  • If there is a sticker on the card, the asylum seeker has the right to work in the fields of agriculture, forestry, horticulture and fisheries until 31/10/2020.
  • The sticker does not indicate whether the asylum seeker has the right to work in any other field. The right to work in other fields can be proved as before, by asking about the right to work from the asylum seeker. If necessary, you can request a certificate of the right to work from the Finnish Immigration Service: migri.fi/en/certificate-requests.
  • The sticker does not indicate if the asylum seeker has the right to work after 31/10/2020.
  • Not having the card does not automatically mean that the asylum seeker does not have a right to work, because the reception centre only adds the sticker if the asylum seeker has requested them to do so. You can advise the asylum seeker to ask for a sticker at the reception centre. 

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