Tasks of the Finnish Immigration Service and Division of tasks in immigration affairs

The Finnish Immigration Service

  • grants residence permits to foreign nationals entering Finland, such as students, employees, self-employed people, returnees and family members of foreign nationals living in Finland;
  • registers the right of residence of EU citizens and issues residence cards for family members of EU citizens;
  • processes asylum applications from asylum interviews to decisions;
  • steers and plans the practical reception of asylum seekers and those granted temporary protection;
  • issues alien’s passports and refugee travel documents;
  • decides on refusals of entry and deportations;
  • processes citizenship applications and declarations as well as determinations of citizenship status;
  • maintains the Register of Aliens;
  • produces information services for international needs and for Finnish decision-makers and authorities; and
  • participates in international cooperation in its own field.

In addition to the Finnish Immigration Service, many other authorities handle immigration-related matters.

Our most important partners in immigration affairs are:

  • The Ministry of the Interior as well as the police and the border guard authorities, which are subordinate to the Ministry of the Interior.
  • The reception centres for asylum seekers.
  • The Ministry for Foreign Affairs as well as Finnish missions (embassies and consulates) abroad, which are subordinate to the Ministry for Foreign Affairs.
  • The Ministry of Economic Affairs and Employment and employment and economic development offices (TE Offices) and centres for economic development, transport and the environment (ELY Centres), which are subordinate to the Ministry of Economic Affairs and Employment.
  • The Ministry of Education and Culture and the Finnish National Board of Education.
  • The Ministry of Justice, Administrative Courts and the Supreme Administrative Court as appellate authorities, and the Non-Discrimination Ombudsman, which are all subordinate to the Ministry of Justice.
  • The table below provides a general view of the most central matters concerning immigration and the authorities that manage and make decisions on these matters. In certain cases, another authority may decide on the matter.

Immigration matters in Finland

Matter

Responsible authority

Immigration policy, focal points of activities

Immigration policy is directed by the Minister of the Interior in accordance with the guidelines laid down by the Government

Immigration administration and policy

Ministry of the Interior

Development of immigration legislation

Ministry of the Interior

Performance guidance of the Finnish Immigration Service

Ministry of the Interior

Visa

The Ministry for Foreign Affairs’ missions

First residence permit

Reception of applications and proof of identity abroad:
The Ministry for Foreign Affairs’ missions

Reception of applications and proof of identity in Finland:
the Finnish Immigration Service

Granting of permits:
Finnish Immigration Service

Registration of the right to reside an EU citizen or a comparable person

Finnish Immigration Service

Residence permit for an employed person

Labour market tests:
employment and economic development office (TE Office)

Other requirements: Finnish Immigration Service

Residence permit for a self-employed person

Profitable self-employment: centre for economic development, transport and the environment (ELY Centre)

Other requirements: Finnish Immigration Service

Asylum or
residence permit on the basis of subsidiary protection

Asylum interview and decision: Finnish Immigration Service

Steering and planning of practical reception operations: Finnish Immigration Service

Establishment and closure of reception centres: Finnish Immigration Service

Placement into municipalities of quota refugees and asylum seekers who have been granted a residence permit:
centres for economic development, transport and the environment (ELY Centres)

Extended permits and permanent permits

Finnish Immigration Service

Refusal of entry

Border control authorities, police, Finnish Immigration Service

Deportation

Proposal: police, border control authorities

Decision: Finnish Immigration Service

Enforcement: police

Citizenship application or declaration

Finnish Immigration Service

Appeal

Administrative courts

Supreme Administrative Court

Integration

Ministry of Employment and the Economy, ELY Centres, municipalities

Educational and cultural services

Ministry of Education and Culture, Finnish National Board of Education

 

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