Finland is considered as the best country in the world for expats. In this article, we are going to tell you about a work permit in Finland and how you can get a work permit in Finland easily. Let’s get started!
Who Can Apply for a Work Permit in Finland
How is a specialist defined by the Finnish Immigration Service?
A specialist performs tasks that require expertise and skills. Most commonly they are IT specialists or engineers. Specialists also have a higher degree. If you perform the tasks of an expert but you don’t have a higher degree, then you can prove your expertise with a long work history and other degree certificates. The salary level of a specialist is also higher than average.
What is the difference between a specialist’s and an employee’s residence permit?
The difference is that the educational level and also the salary level of a specialist are higher than the average. It’s also good to know that for specialists labor market testing is not required.
Let’s move on to how you can apply for a work permit in Finland.
Applying for a Work Permit in Finland
Do you need a work permit in Finland? Or would you like to stay in Finland after your current permit expires? How does the residence permit process usually go?
You can apply for a residence permit for working or studying or to live with your family member in Finland. Start by visiting migri.fi. Click the page “I want to apply” to find the right application for you. You can also ask the chatbot for help in finding the right application. You’ll find the chatbot in the bottom right corner of the migri.fi website.
If you’re applying for your first residence permit, apply for the permit before coming to Finland and wait for the decision abroad. If you’re applying for an extended permit, remember to apply before your previous permit expires. You have to be in Finland to apply for an extended permit. It’s not possible to apply for an extended permit abroad.
When you’ve found the right application, you have two options:
- you can create a user account in the e-service Enter Finland and apply online;
- or you can fill in a paper application.
There are various additional documents you need to attach to your application. The necessary documents are listed in Enter Finland and on the paper application. Attach the documents to your application. If you chose to apply online, finish by paying the processing fee. Use your Enter Finland account to send the application.
The next step is a personal visit to a Finnish embassy or a consulate or a service point of the Finnish Immigration Service. A personal visit is necessary because you must prove your identity and have your fingerprints taken.
If you are not in Finland, contact a Finnish embassy or consulate in your country to schedule your visit. If you already are in Finland, book an appointment at a service point of the Finnish Immigration Service. Bring your passport, a passport photo, and the originals of the documents needed for your application.
If you want to apply on paper, you’ll also need the application form, which you have filled in, and copies of the required documents and your passport. You’ll need to pay the processing fee, so if you haven’t done that already, remember to bring cash or a bank card.
After the visit, your application will be put in a processing queue at the Finnish Immigration Service. You’ll receive a request for additional information if more information is needed from you. You may also be invited to an interview. If you get a message from the Finnish Immigration Service, it’s important that you read it carefully and do what it says as soon as possible. This is the best way to speed up the processing of your application.
Each application is different, so their processing times may be different too. The wait may be long, but you can be sure that each and every application will be processed. You can check the expected processing time of your application on the website migri.fi using the Processing Time Checker.
You will be contacted when the decision has been made. If you applied online, you’ll get a message to your Enter Finland Account. You’ll also get an email or a text message. If you apply it on paper, you’ll get the decision by post or you may be invited to come and hear the decision. If the decision is positive, you’ll get a residence permit card in about two or three weeks after the decision has been made. The card is always sent to the country where you submitted your application.
Let’s look in more detail into a couple of aspects of a work permit in Finland.
FAQ Related to a Work Permit in Finland
1. First of all, what are the additional documents needed when applying for a residence permit as a specialist?
You need to add your degree certificate and also the employment contract or a binding job offer that includes the details of the expertise tasks you are about to do in Finland.
2. At which point in the residence permit application process is a good time to visit the Finnish embassy or consulate to prove one’s identity?
It would be good to visit as soon as possible to avoid delays in the application process. When booking a time to visit the embassy, please also remember to book time for your family members if they are coming to Finland with you.
The application is processed after you have paid the application fee and when your identity has been verified at the embassy. You can visit finlandabroad.fi and there you can get the guidance about where to visit to verify your identity.
3. Does the specialist handle the entire application process or does the Finnish employer have some sort of part in it?
The applicant is always fully responsible for the application. So making the application make sure that it includes all the required information and documents.
However, to speed up the process, you can give a consent to your employer to use the Enter Finland service. Your employer can also upload documents to your application that concerns your employment.
4. Can a specialist start working in Finland even before the residence permit is granted?
Yes, they can. A specialist can work maximum 90 days without a work permit in Finland. If you are in Finland with a visa and it expires sooner than 90 days, then you can work as long as your visa is valid. The first residence permit should be always applied while the applicant is still abroad.
5. How long on average does it take for the Finnish Immigration Service to handle the application?
If the application has all the required documents and information, then it takes approximately one month to process the application.
6. What about if a specialist has a family and plans on bringing them to Finland? How does that affect the application process?
If you have family members who are submitting the applications with you, then the Finnish Immigration Service will process the applications simultaneously. So make sure that your family members’ applications have all the family documents legalized accordingly. This is very important to ensure the smooth process of the applications.
You can find more information about the legalization process and a work permit in Finland on the migri.fi webpage. If you need more details related to global employment solutions, contact Swapp Agency.