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Seasonal work

If you are coming to Finland to do seasonal work, you must apply for the appropriate permit for it. Seasonal work refers to work in agriculture and tourism that is done at certain times of the year. The maximum length of seasonal work is nine months.

To be counted as seasonal work, the work must be based on a direct employment contract between the seasonal worker and the employer that is in Finland. The Seasonal Workers Act does not apply to temporary agency work. For temporary agency work you need to apply for a residence permit for an employed person (TTOL) by using the form OLE_TY1.

The Seasonal Workers Act does not apply to you if you live permanently in an EU Member State or in Iceland, Liechtenstein, Norway or Switzerland. If you want to do seasonal work in Finland, you need to apply for a residence permit for an employed person (TTOL) by using the form OLE_TY1.

The types of seasonal work for which a permit is required include forestry, crop farming and festival work. A detailed list of seasonal jobs. If you work as a forest berry picker, you do not need to apply for a permit if you will work for less than three months. If you are a freelancer, you cannot get a certificate or residence permit for seasonal work if you have not signed an employment contract with a company that operates in Finland. Instead, you must apply for a residence permit for an entrepreneur.

People coming to work for less than three months:

  • If you are coming from a country whose citizens are required to have a visa, apply for a seasonal work visa from a Finnish embassy.
  • If you are coming from a country whose citizens are not required to have a visa, apply for a seasonal work certificate from the Finnish Immigration Service. The certificate for seasonal work proves your right to work. For your stay in Finland to be legal, you also need to have visa-free days at your disposal for the whole period of validity of your certificate. A certificate for seasonal work does not extend your visa-free stay in Finland.
  • If you are coming to pick forest berries, you do not need to apply for a permit for this work. However, if you are coming from a country whose citizens are required to have a visa, you must obtain a visa from a Finnish embassy.

People coming to work for three to six months:

Apply for a seasonal work permit from the Finnish Immigration Service.

People coming to work for six to nine months:

  • Apply for a seasonal work permit from the Finnish Immigration Service. Decision-making involves two phases. First, the Employment and Economic Development Office issues a partial decision. Then the Finnish Immigration Service processes the application and decides on the permit.
  • The length of the employment relationship determines the duration of the permit granted.

Only citizens of countries outside the EU and ETA are required to have a residence permit

If you are a citizen of an EU country, Iceland, Norway, Lichtenstein or Switzerland, you can work in Finland without a residence permit. If you stay in Finland for more than three months, you must register your residence.

Updates about the corona situation: migri.fi/coronavirus

For instructions about applying, see the pages migri.fi/you-are-in-finland and migri.fi/you-are-not-in-finland.

All applications for seasonal work permits are considered urgent

Please wait patiently for the decision. During the summer, we only respond to enquiries concerning applications that are lacking necessary details or documents. By doing so, we want to save time for decision-making, as we get dozens of enquiries about the status of applications every day. 

As a rule, applications are processed in the order they become pending. However, our aim is to issue a decision before the employment relationship is supposed to begin. 

If you are an employer and have not yet entered the conditions of employment in the online service Enter Finland for Employers, please do so as soon as possible. That way you can speed up the decision-making process. For more information, see our customer bulletin: Employer: Will your company have seasonal workers? You can speed up the decision-making in Enter Finland.

Asylum seeker’s right to work in seasonal work

The legislation on an asylum seeker’s right to work in seasonal work has been temporarily amended as of 29 June 2020. The act will remain in force until 31 October 2020. Read more on the page migri.fi/en/asylum-seeker-s-right-to-work-in-seasonal-work

Webinar

Webinar on seasonal work on page Videos (in Finnish).

Certificate for seasonal work

1. The employee finds a job in Finland.

2. The employee submits a request for a certificate for seasonal work either in the online service Enter Finland or by email, post or fax.

3. The Finnish Immigration Service processes the request and issues a decision.

4a. Negative decision:

If the employee submitted the request online in Enter Finland, the employee receives the decision in Enter Finland. Otherwise the decision is sent to the employee’s home address abroad.

4b. Positive decision:

If the employee submitted the request online in Enter Finland, the employee receives the decision in Enter Finland. Otherwise the decision is sent to the employer’s address in Finland.

5. The employee may start working.

6. If the employee wishes to renew the permit, the employee can apply for a residence permit for seasonal work.