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Frequently asked questions about Brexit


Have I got a valid EU registration?

Your registration is valid if you have registered your right of residence. You do not need to register again.

If you are unsure whether you have registered:

  • Email us at: [email protected] Please include your name, date of birth and nationality in the email. Also tell us your customer number (if you have one).

or 

  • Call the Finnish Immigration Service’s customer service number +358 (0)295 419 600 (Mon–Fri 9am–4pm) 

Do I need written proof of my registration?

The Finnish Immigration Service does not require you to have written proof that you have registered your residence. However, you may need to provide written proof in some circumstances, such as when dealing with other authorities.

If you have permanent residency, you may need written proof of your right of permanent residence. If you obtained permanent residency before 1 January 2020, you have two ways of proving your right of residence.

  • You can apply to change your status to a permanent right of residence based on the withdrawal agreement or
  • you can retain the written proof showing that you obtained a permanent right of residence  before 1 January 2020. This written proof will be enough to prove that you have the right to reside in Finland.

How can I obtain a certificate of my EU registration?

The Finnish Immigration Service has been handling registrations since 1 January 2017. If the Finnish Immigration Service registered your right of residence, you can ask for a new certificate by emailing [email protected] 

Certificate requests are subject to a fee. You can check the cost on the processing fees page. 

The Police handled registrations before 1 January 2017. If the Police registered your right of residence, you can contact the Police or request a certificate from the Finnish Immigration Service. Certificate requests are subject to a fee. You can check the cost on the processing fees page.

Can I still register even though the UK has already left the EU? 

Yes. If you have not already done so, register your right of residence as quickly as possible. Remember that you must register if you reside in Finland for more than 90 days. 

The easiest way is to fill out an application online at Enter Finland. You should then use our online service to make an appointment at a Finnish Immigration Service service point to prove your identity and provide the originals of any documents you have sent as online attachments.

If you have been residing in Finland legally and continuously for five years, you can obtain a certificate of your permanent right of residence as an EU citizen from the Finnish Immigration Service. 

Although the UK is no longer an EU Member State, it will comply with EU legislation and freedom of movement until the end of the transition period on 31 December 2020.

Further information: https://migri.fi/en/registration-of-right-of-residence

Can a family member who is not an EU citizen still obtain a family member’s residence card after Brexit?

Yes. Family members can still apply for a family member’s residence card.

If you marry after 31 December 2020, your future spouse will be subject to the rules governing persons arriving from outside the EU. 

If a child is born or adopted into your family after the transition period, they will be covered by the withdrawal agreement. This means that you will be able to apply for right of residence for your child. More detailed information will be available when the legislation governing this matter has been completed. We will update our website then.  

Can I prove my identity or submit a registration application at a Finnish Immigration Service service point by taking a waiting number?

If you need to prove your identity or submit your application at a service point, it is a good idea to make an appointment in advance. You can make an appointment using our online service.

If you cannot make an appointment, check the service again later for free times. We are continuously adding new appointments to the service. 

If you have an urgent matter and cannot make an appointment, you can visit a service point and take a waiting number. Please note that you may have to queue for some time. On busy days, there may not be time to serve all the customers who are waiting. You will then have to return to the service point again the next day it is open.

In Helsinki, you can also visit the International House Helsinki service point. Please make an appointment in advance. 

I have a residence permit. Do I also need to register my right of residence as an EU citizen?

No. If you have a fixed-term residence permit, remember to obtain a new fixed-term residence permit before your current permit expires.

I have a social insurance number/KELA card. Is this sufficient proof that I have registered my right of residence?

A social insurance number does not indicate that you have registered. If your right of residence has been registered, the Police or Finnish Immigration Service will have made a positive decision on your application. 

If you are unsure whether your right of residence has been registered, see the instructions on how to request a certificate from the question "How can I obtain a certificate of my EU-registration".

I am a dual citizen of both the UK and Finland. Must I also register as a British citizen even though I am a Finnish citizen?

If you are a Finnish citizen, you do not need to register as a British citizen.

I am also a citizen of another EU country. Must I, or should I, register my citizenship of that country?

You do not have to submit a new registration application to register your citizenship of a second country. First, make sure that your domicile and second nationality have been correctly entered into the Population Information System at the Digital and Population Data Services Agency. Then notify the Finnish Immigration Service:

  1. Send a copy of your passport’s personal identification page by email. We recommend that you use an encrypted email format: go to securemail.migri.fi You can also send the copy by post to: P.O. Box 10, 00086 Maahanmuuttovirasto, or drop the copy off at our service point .
  2. We will record the details of your other EU citizenship. If you wish to receive written confirmation that you have been registered on the basis of another EU citizenship, you can request a certificate. Certificate requests are subject to a fee. However, we do not require you to have written proof of your registration. 

Remember, you must first make sure that your personal details are correct at the Digital and Population Data Services Agency. The Finnish Immigration Service cannot record details of your second EU citizenship unless these details have also been correctly entered into the Population Information System. 

What kind of rights will I have to reside in Finland after Brexit?

The UK’s withdrawal from the EU will not immediately affect British citizens living in Finland.  If you moved to Finland before the end of the transition period (1 January 2021), have lived in Finland since then, and have registered your right of residence, both you and your family members will have the right to reside in Finland. 

Finland is currently preparing legislation governing UK citizens’ right of residence. As soon as this legislation has been completed, we will tell you what to do. 

At the moment, it is already certain that you will have to apply to exchange your EU registration for a right of residence. You cannot make this application yet. The target registration period is 1 October 2020–30 June 2021. We will provide more detailed instructions for making this application at a later date. 

Remember: If you come to Finland after 31 December 2020, you will not be covered by the withdrawal agreement. You will then have to a apply for a residence permit like others arriving from outside the EU. 

When you have received an EU right of permanent residence 

You can apply to change your right of residence to permanent residency. This application is free of charge. 

The target registration period is 1 October 2020–30 June 2021. We will provide more detailed instructions for making this application at a later date.

If you are a British citizen who has obtained an EU right of permanent residence in Finland before 1 January 2021 and have written proof of this, you can apply to change your status to a permanent right of residence based on the withdrawal agreement. This will be free of charge. Appropriate written proof will be sufficient to indicate that you have the right to reside in Finland, so you will not necessarily have to apply. 

In order to obtain permanent residency, you must have resided in Finland legally for five years. If you have not yet resided in Finland for five years by the end of 2020, you can still accumulate this time after the end of the transition period and obtain your permanent right of residence later. 

However, even if you have lived in Finland for less than five years, you will still have to exchange your EU registration for a right of residence based on the withdrawal agreement.

You can read more about Brexit on the websites of other authorities:

  • Prime Minister's Office: https://vnk.fi/en/information-about-brexit
  • Ministry of the Interior: www.intermin.fi/brexit

Will I retain my right to work in Finland?

Yes. Brexit will not affect your right to work if it was obtained on the basis of EU registration.

How will Brexit affect travel?

British citizens will still have the same freedom of movement until the end of the transition period on 31 December 2020.

You can reside elsewhere in the Schengen area for a maximum of three months. If you move from Finland to another EU Member State, you will have to apply for right of residence, usually a residence permit.
You can find more information about travelling on the Finnish Border Guard’s website.