Moving abroad from Finland

Muutto Suomesta ulkomaille
Here you will find information on what arrangements you should make before leaving if you are moving from Finland to another country. These arrangements will depend, among other things, on whether your move is temporary or permanent.

For a temporary move lasting more than three months, a notification of move must always be made to the Digital and Population Services Agency and Kela. A notification of move must naturally also be made for a permanent move.

Notification of move in Finland

For a temporary move lasting more than three months, a notification of move must always be made to the Digital and Population Services Agency and Kela. A notification of move must naturally also be made for a permanent move.

Population registration in your new country of residence

Under the Nordic agreement on population registration, all persons living in the Nordic countries must be registered in a population register in one place only in the Nordic countries. The registration requirements will depend on the rules in the country that you are moving to.

You must register with the population register in the new country if:

  • you go to Greenland for over 3 months
  • you go to Norway, Denmark, Iceland or the Faroe Islands for over 6 months
  • you go to Sweden for over 12 months

If you live in two countries at the same time, you must register in the country where you spend most of your time (at least 183 days a year).

You can find more information on population registration in the sections Population registration in Sweden, Norway, Denmark, Iceland, the Faroe Islands and Greenland.

Social security

If you move to another country, you always need to make a separate notification to Kela. Based on your notification, Kela decides whether you can still be covered by Finnish social security during your stay in the other country.

The rules affecting different groups of individuals are described below:

Employees

If you go to another Nordic country as an employee, you usually transfer to the social security in your new country of employment as of the date when you start your employment. You always need to apply separately for social security to the corresponding authority.

The state social security authorities in the Nordic countries are: in Sweden the Swedish Social Insurance Agency, in Norway NAV, in Denmark the municipalities, in Iceland Tryggingastofnun, in the Faroe Islands  Almannaverkið and in Greenland the social services in your municipality of residence.

Employees’ unemployment funds

As a general rule, employees always belong to an unemployment fund in their country of employment. This means you can’t continue to be a member of a Finnish unemployment fund if you have moved to another country for work.

When you move, contact the unemployment fund for your sector in your new country of residence directly. In Sweden and Denmark you must join the local unemployment fund to be entitled to unemployment security. In Norway, Iceland and the Faroe Islands there aren’t sectoral unemployment funds - everyone who meets the criteria is covered by unemployment security.

If you go abroad to work, you can also transfer unemployment insurance periods you have earned in Finland to the other country. You can find more information on transferring periods to another country on the page Transferring unemployment insurance periods from Finland.

Unemployed jobseekers

Under certain conditions, unemployed jobseekers can get Finnish unemployment allowance if they go job hunting in EU or EEA countries. Find out more in the section Job hunting abroad on Finnish unemployment allowance.

Posted workers

Workers posted to another Nordic country by a Finnish employer also keep their entitlement to Finnish social security during their secondment abroad. If you are a posted worker, contact the Finnish Centre for Pensions.

If a posted worker is accompanied abroad by family members, they must notify Kela that they are leaving. Family members who leave for more than a year must apply to Kela to retain Finnish social security coverage within one year of leaving. You can also find more information on family members and the special rules for posted workers on Kela’s website.

Students

If you go to another Nordic country to study, you generally remain covered by Finnish social security, but you must notify your move to Kela. If your studies abroad last more than a year, you need to apply to be covered by Finnish social security. If you apply to Kela for a study grant for the period of your studies abroad, you can apply to be covered by Finnish social security on the same form. The change does not affect payment of financial aid for students – as a student in another Nordic country you still get your student financial aid from Finland.

If you are a student but you also work alongside your studies, you generally transfer to the social security of your country of employment if the minimum conditions of employment are met in the country concerned. You must always notify Kela of your employment abroad. If you are a researcher and you receive wage income as well as a grant, you are generally covered by the social security in your country of employment.

Temporary stays abroad

Individuals staying temporarily in another country without employment remain covered by Finnish social security and can get a European Health Insurance Card from Kela which gives you healthcare both in the Nordic countries in all EU and EEA countries and Switzerland on the same conditions on the same terms and conditions as local residents. More information on the EHIC card on Kela’s website.

Pensioners

Moving does not affect payment of Finnish employment pensions, but it might affect social security, healthcare and taxation. There are also no restrictions on payment of Finnish national pensions to pensioners who move to another EU or EEA country with which Finland has a social security agreement. For other countries, national pensions can be paid for one year.

Taxation

If you work while you are abroad, you get your new tax card from the tax office in the municipality that you move to. Students who do not work do not need a tax card.

To get a tax card, you need a personal identity code. If your stay is temporary (e.g. a summer job), you get a temporary personal number when you apply for your tax card.

Remember also to notify your foreign income to the Finnish taxation authorities. The tax authorities in Finland will advise you if you have questions about completing your tax return if you move.

Also, the Finnish Tax Administration website has a lot of useful information on taxation in the sections Guidance and International situations. Alternatively, you can contact your nearest tax office or call the Finnish Tax Administration’s helpline for international tax matters on 029 497 024.

The Nordic tax portal also contains useful information on taxation in the different Nordic countries in all five countries’ languages plus English. The portal takes different moving situations into account, and there is information specifically for students, employees and pensioners as well as for individuals with assets in another Nordic country. In the FAQ section you can also put your own questions to experts in the tax administrations of the Nordic countries.

Other points to note

Removal goods

You can find information about taking removal goods to your new country of residence in the sections below. The pages also contain information about taking vehicles and pets. Moving to the Åland Islands is considered a move within Finland.

If you move outside the EU from Finland (Norway and Iceland as well as the Faroe Islands and Greenland, which are non-EU territories), you need to make an export declaration for your removal goods to Finnish Customs. Removal goods within the EU are covered by freedom of movement, so they do not have to be declared to customs.

Driving licences

A Finnish driving licence entitles you to drive the vehicle categories listed on your licence in all the Nordic countries.

Checklist if you move

If you move to Sweden, Norway or Denmark, you will definitely find the checklists below useful.

Ask Info Norden

If you have any questions, please fill in our contact form.

NB! If you have questions regarding the processing of a specific case or application, or other personal matters, please contact the relevant authority directly.

Info Norden is the information service of the Nordic Council of Ministers. Here you can find info and tips if you wish to move, work, study, seek support or start a business in the Nordic region.