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Residence permit application for a researcher

Apply for a residence permit with this application if you are coming to Finland in order to conduct research, study for a licentiate degree or prepare a doctoral dissertation. You can be granted either a residence permit for research under the Directive or a national residence permit for research.

When applying, you do not need to know which of the residence permits you are applying for. The Finnish Immigration Service will investigate which permit you can be issued with.

A first residence permit for research can be granted for a maximum of two years.

  • Expected processing time for electronic application

    First permit 1-2 months / 

    extended permit 1-2 months

  • Expected processing time for paper application

    First permit 1 - 2 months / 

    extended permit 1-2 months

  • Electronic application fee

    First permit 380 € / extended permit 160 €

  • Paper application fee

    First permit 480 € / extended permit 430 €

Residence permit for research for a person who holds a master’s degree (a second-cycle degree)

You may be issued with a residence permit for research under the Students and researchers Directive (EU) 2016/801, if 

  • you hold a master’s degree (a second-cycle degree) and
  • you have signed an agreement on research activity (a hosting agreement) with a research organisation. 

If you are granted a residence permit under the Directive, you have the right to move and reside freely within the territory of the EU. This means that if you have signed an agreement on research activity with a research organisation in Finland, you can conduct part of the research in a second EU Member State. In that case, you should ask the competent authorities of the second EU Member State if you need to submit a mobility notification. 

A residence permit under the Directive is a continuous residence permit (an A permit).

You cannot be granted a residence permit for research under the Directive in the following situations:

  • You are applying for asylum in Finland. 
  • You have been granted international protection in an EU Member State.
  • You have received a decision on deportation from Finland.

Residence permit for research for a person who holds a bachelor's degree (a first-cycle degree)

You may be issued with a national residence permit for research, if

  • you hold a bachelor’s degree (a first-cycle degree) and
  • you have signed an agreement on research activity (a hosting agreement) with a research organisation. 

If you are issued with a national residence permit for research, 

  • you do not have the right to move and reside freely within the territory of the EU. This means that you can conduct research only in Finland.

Depending on the length of the agreement signed by the research organisation and the researcher, a national residence permit for research can be temporary (a B permit) or continuous (an A permit). If the duration of the agreement is less than two years, you can be granted the B permit. If the duration of the agreement is two years or more, you can be granted the A permit.

You may be issued with a national residence permit for research even if you have applied for or received international protection in an EU Member State or in Finland. A national residence permit for research may be granted also if you have received a decision on deportation from Finland.

This is what you should do

1

Make sure you meet the requirements for the residence permit you are applying for.

2

Make sure you have all the attachments needed. If necessary, have them translated and legalised. The processing time may be longer if you have not filled in your application sufficiently.

3

Fill in your application.

4

Pay for your application in the online service Enter Finland, at a Finnish mission (embassy or consulate) or at a service point of the Finnish Immigration Service.

5

If you are abroad, visit a Finnish mission (embassy or consulate). If you are already in Finland, book an appointment at a service point of the Finnish Immigration Service.

6

Wait for a decision. The Finnish Immigration Service will contact you if necessary.

7

Read what happens after you have applied. Check the estimated processing time of your application here. You can follow the processing of your application with the help of our chatbot Kamu. In addition, you will usually receive automated messages at the different processing stages of your application.

8

You should wait for the residence permit in the same country or locality where you submitted your application and proved your identity.

General requirements for entry into Finland

Make sure you meet the general requirements for entry into Finland before you submit an application.

Requirements

You must also meet the following requirements:

1

You are a researcher.

  • You hold a doctoral degree, a master’s degree (a second-cycle degree) or a bachelor’s degree (a first-cycle degree).
  • you have signed an agreement on research activity (a hosting agreement) with a research organisation.

2

A research organisation has signed a hosting agreement with you.

  • To ensure that the hosting agreement contains all the necessary information, please see the contract template.

Income requirement

You must have sufficient financial resources.

  • If you are in an employment relationship with the research organisation, you must be able to earn your living in Finland through gainful employment throughout the time you stay in Finland. 
    • Your salary must at least correspond to the salary specified in the collective agreement that applies to your employment relationship. If there is no general collective agreement in your sector, your gross salary must be at least EUR 1,283 per month in 2022. Read more on the page Income requirement.
  • If you are not in an employment relationship, you must have at least EUR 1,000 per month at your disposal for your living costs in Finland. You can secure your income with funds, earnings from work or even other types of income, such as a research scholarship. Before you arrive in Finland, make sure that you have enough funds for the entire time you are carrying out your research:

    • If you are coming to Finland to do research for less than a year, you must have sufficient financial resources for the entire time you spend here doing research.
    • If you are coming to Finland to do research for at least one year, you must have sufficient financial resources for at least one year, that is 12,000 euros.
    • You will be granted a residence permit for two years if you are going to do research for at least two years and have EUR 24,000 at your disposal. If you only want the residence permit for one year at a time, you must have EUR 12,000 at your disposal in your own bank account. We will assess your financial resources every time you submit an application to us. If necessary, we will ask you to submit additional documentation of the source of your assets.

Right to work

  • If you are in Finland when you are applying for a residence permit, you have the right to work as a researcher already before you get a residence permit. In this case, you must reside in Finland legally (you have a valid visa or you are allowed to stay in Finland without a visa). However, your right to work will end after three months at the latest, or even earlier if your visa expires.
  • Once you are granted a residence permit, you can also do other types of work while working as a researcher. You must, however, work full-time as a researcher and make progress in your research work. When you apply for an extended permit, the Finnish Immigration Service will check that you are making progress with your research work and that scientific research is still the main purpose of your stay in Finland.
  • If you apply for an extended permit, check if you have the right to work while your application is being processed.

General attachments

  • Valid passport (you must present it when you submit the residence permit application)
  • Passport photo complying with the photo guidelines issued by the police or a photograph retrieval code you received from a photo shop, OLEL_PK
  • Colour copies of the passport page containing personal data and of all passport pages that contain notes
  • Document showing that you are legally staying in the country where you submit the application
  • Form MP_1 (if you already are in Finland and apply for your first residence permit)

Application-specific attachments

  • The agreement signed by the researcher and the research organisation, containing the following information:
    • the title and purpose of the research activity or the research area;
    • an undertaking by the researcher and the research organisation to endeavour to complete the research activity;
    • the start and end date or the estimated duration of the research activity;
    • information on the legal relationship between the research organisation and the researcher;
    • information on the working conditions of the researcher, if the legal relationship between the research organisation and the researcher is an employment relationship;
    • information on the intended mobility from Finland to another EU Member State, if the mobility is known at the time when the application is submitted;
  • Certificate of the highest degree completed 
  • Clarification of income, if the legal relationship between the research organisation and the researcher is not an employment relationship.

Residence permit application for scientific research, OLE_TUT

Fill in an electronic application

Extended permit for a researcher, OLE_TUT

Fill in an electronic application