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Permits and citizenship

Employer’s role and obligations

An employee who is not a citizen of an EU or EEA country must apply for a residence permit. Your employees must fill in and submit their own residence permit applications but you can help them select the right application form. 

Employers have a key role in their employees’ residence permit processes

In almost all cases, the employer must fill in the terms of employment for the employee’s residence permit application. For more information, see the page Filling in the terms of employment.

We explain the role of the employer in our Residence permit on the basis of employment webinar.

As an employer, you also have the following responsibilities:

  • To meet the obligations of an employer.
  • To ensure that a foreign employee you hire has the necessary skills and competence needed for the job.
  • To ensure that a foreign employee you hire has the right to reside and work in Finland.
  • To ensure that your employees’ terms of employment comply with Finnish legislation and the applicable collective agreement.
  • To ensure that information on all foreign employees you have hired and on the tasks that they have been performing is available at the workplace for inspection by occupational safety and health authorities. For more information on what data needs to be stored, see the website of the Occupational Safety and Health Administration in Finland
  • To inform the shop steward, the elected representative and the occupational safety and health representative of the foreign employee’s name and the applicable collective agreement. 

On this page:

Residence permit on the basis of work

There are more than 20 different residence permits that can be granted on the basis of work. You will find a list of the possible grounds for a residence permit on the page Applications. Which of the permits is the right permit for your employee depends on the nature of the employee's duties and possibly on the duration of the employment relationship. If your employee does not know which application to choose, the Application Finder will be of help.

The processing of your employees’ applications will be faster if your company applies for and is granted employer certification. You can read more on the page Employer certification.

Employees who are citizens of an EU or EEA country are allowed to work in Finland without restrictions. However, they must register their right of residence. If an employee of yours is a British citizen, read more on British citizens’ right to work in Finland.

Notification of decision

A decision on a residence permit application on the basis of work must be made within two months of the date when all of the following conditions are met:  

  • The residence permit application contains all the information that was required on the application form.
  • The employer has submitted the terms of employment that are required as an attachment to the application. 
  • The employee has proved their identity. 

Proving one’s identity means that the applicant visits a service point of the Finnish Immigration Service in Finland, or a Finnish mission (embassy or consulate) or a service point of an external service provider abroad to prove his or her identity. The counting of the two-month time limit is interrupted if the application is incomplete and needs to be supplemented.  See the page Processing times for more information.

An employee’s right of residence and right to work

An employee's right of residence in Finland and the right to work in Finland are two different things.  Your employee may be staying legally in Finland but may not necessarily have the right to work in Finland. 

Remote working abroad for a Finnish employer

If you have employees who work only remotely and live abroad: 

  • they are not required to have a residence permit in Finland;
  • they are not required to have the right to work in Finland.

For information about taxation, visit the website of the Finnish Tax Administration (

If you have employees that live and work in Finland, you must make sure that they have the right to reside and work in Finland.

Protection of workers’ rights in Finland

The following authorities are responsible for monitoring that employees' rights in Finland are respected:

Employee announcement

You must submit an employee announcement if you hire a person who comes from outside the EU/EEA countries and already has a valid right to work and a valid residence permit, such as a permanent residence permit or a permit granted on the basis of family ties. 

Under law, an employer who employs a person from outside the EU must submit an employee announcement to the TE Office. For more information about the employee announcement, see the website of the TE Office (in Finnish).

For instructions on how to submit an employee announcement, see Enter Finland for Employers

You do not need to submit an employee announcement if your employee is only now applying for a residence permit and you have already added or will add the terms of employment in the employee’s application.

Ask our chatbot Kamu! You will find Kamu in the bottom right corner of our web pages. Write ‘I am an employer’ in the text field below Kamu and Kamu will give you advice intended for employers.