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. On the other hand, the agreement ensures that if you move you do not drop out of the population register entirely. In Finland the authority responsible for population registration is the Digital and Population Services Agency. In the Åland Islands registration is done by the State Department of Åland.
Citizens of the Nordic countries do not need any other permits, such as a residence or working permit, to reside in Finland.
Notification of move
Persons who move to Finland permanently from another Nordic country must visit the Digital and Population Services Agency in person to notify their move no later than one week from the date of moving. If your stay in Finland is due to last more than three months but less than 12 months, you must make a notification of a temporary move. See below for more detailed instructions.
Foreigners do not need to notify a stay of less than three months in Finland.
If your stay in Finland is due to last more than three months but less than 12 months, you must make a notification of a temporary move. If you move to Finland from the Nordic countries, you must make your notification of move in person at Digital and Population Services Agency’s service location.
If staying for more than three months, citizens of non-Nordic EU and EEA countries must register their right of residence with the Finnish Immigration Service. You need to have an ID document with you. Citizens of non-EU or EEA countries need a visa or residence permit.
Persons residing in Finland temporarily do not have a registered municipality of residence in Finland and thus they do not necessarily have the same rights as persons who live in Finland permanently. However, in certain cases they can get a personal identity code (a so-called temporary personal identity code), if they need one for work, for example.
If your stay in Finland is intended to be permanent or if it is due to last or has lasted more than 12 months, you must make a notification of a permanent move. You make the notification of move in person at the Digital and Population Services Agency’s service location. For Nordic citizens, proof of identity is provided by a passport, an official identity card with photo ID indicating citizenship or an equivalent document.
Citizens of non-Nordic EU and EEA countries must also take along their certificate of registration of right of residence, which you get from the Finnish Immigration Service. Citizens of non-EU and EEA countries must produce a valid residence permit. Family members can apply for registration on the basis of family ties.
When details of the person moving are registered in the population register, they are assigned a personal identity code and municipality of residence.
Remember that just making a notification of move does not automatically mean you are entitled to Kela (Social Insurance Institution of Finland) benefits and social security. Entitlement to these is decided when benefits are applied for.
Municipality of residence
Everybody who is registered permanently in the population register in Finland has a Finnish municipality of residence. Your municipality of residence affects things like your taxation and health care. Once a person has got their municipality of residence in Finland, they can apply for an income tax card instead of a tax at source card and use municipal health care services in their municipality of residence.
Information on Åland regional citizenship and exemption from military service for persons moving permanently to the Åland Islands is given in the article Population registration in the Åland Islands.
Living in more than one country at the same time
If someone moves and they have homes in two different Nordic countries, the registration authority in the host state (in Finland the Digital and Population Services Agency) decides separately whether the person moving is registered as living in the host state or not.
As a general rule, the state of residence is often taken to be the country where the person has substantial connections (family, home ownership, employment etc.). The registration authority of the host state makes its decision after the person has visited the registration authority in their new country of residence to register their stay.
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NB! If you have questions regarding the processing of a specific case or application, or other personal matters, please contact the relevant authority directly.