How to calculate the period of residence
Start date of period of residence
The start date of your period of residence depends on the kind of permit you had when you moved to Finland.
Interruption in the period of residence
As a general rule, only the time you have lived in Finland with a residence permit counts towards your period of residence. If your residence permit expires before you get the next one, your continuous period of residence may be interrupted.
Your period of residence is interrupted if you permanently move away from Finland. If you move back, the previous period(s) you lived in Finland will count towards your accumulated period of residence.
Effect of absence on continuous residence
Your continuous period of residence is interrupted if you leave Finland regularly for such long periods of time that you can be considered to reside the most of your time outside Finland.
The following periods of absence from Finland will not interrupt your continuous period of residence, and their time will be calculated as continuous residence time:
- absences of a maximum of one month
- a maximum of six periods of absence that last 1–2 months each
- a maximum of two periods of absence that last 2–6 months each
The following period of absence from Finland will not interrupt your continuous period of residence but it will not be calculated as continuous residence time:
- a period of absence that lasts longer than six months but one year at maximum
If you are absent from Finland for longer than a year, your continuous period of residence is interrupted. The periods you have lived in Finland before your absence will be counted towards your accumulated period of residence.
Your period of residence will not be interrupted if your absence is caused by a well-founded personal reason. The reason must be exceptional and unexpected, for example a sudden illness that begins abroad and prevents you from returning to Finland. Taking care of your ill parents or grandparents abroad or in your former home country has not usually been considered to be a well-founded personal reason.
Accumulated period of residence
If your continuous residence time is interrupted, the periods you have lived in Finland will nonetheless be counted towards your accumulated period of residence.
Your accumulated period of residence may consist of several periods of residence in Finland. In this case, the total time you have lived in Finland must be at least seven years, with the last two years without interruption. Normal holiday trips are, however, allowed during the two years before your application is decided. In this case, normal holiday trips mean that you may travel for four months in total during the whole two-year period.
The time you have lived in Finland with a temporary residence permit (the B permit) cannot be included in your accumulated period of residence.