HOW TO GET A WORK VISA TO FINLAND

According to such indicators as the absence of corruption, favorable investment climate, the level and quality of life of the population, modern Finland occupies the highest positions in the ratings of many authoritative publications. Indeed, the Finns have managed to achieve incredible development in economic and social terms, which is of natural interest to foreigners who seek to find a job in Finland and move to live in this northern country forever.

Work visa to Finland

Working visa to Finland for applicants from different countries is one of the main requirements for legal employment in Finnish companies. The local labor market offers foreigners quite a few employment options, including seasonal work for unskilled personnel and long-term contracts for experienced professionals. Next, let's find out how to get a work visa to Finland in 2024.

Registration of a work visa to Finland

The average salary in Finland in 2024 exceeds 2.5 thousand euros per month (after taxes). This is one of the highest in Europe. Unemployment in the country is kept at the level of 5-7%, however, among young people it reaches 18%. Basically, the country needs two categories of labor migrants – temporary workers in agriculture (harvesting) and professionals with high qualifications, such as doctors or engineers (programmers, builders).

In the first case, you can earn up to 2 thousand euros a month, and in the second, more than 3 thousand euros.

For more than 20 years (since 1995) Finland has been a member of the European Union. This gives a huge advantage to some foreigners when looking for a job in Finnish companies. In particular, citizens of the EU, EEA (Norway, Iceland, Liechtenstein) and Switzerland have free access to the Finnish labor market on an equal footing with locals. Foreigners from third countries must first fulfill a number of requirements, including obtaining a work visa.

Obtaining residence permit in Finland

Obtaining a visa and residence permit with the right to work in Finland

A residence and work visa for Finland can be applied for in person at the Finnish diplomatic mission in the country of residence. Until a decision is made to issue a visa or residence permit with the right to work, it is forbidden to engage in gainful activity on Finnish territory. In rare cases, you may apply for a residence permit directly in Finland. In addition, applications are accepted electronically through a special service of the Finnish Immigration Service – enterfinland.fi.

Important. You should not trust numerous intermediary agencies, which for a fee offer to issue a Finnish visa in the shortest possible time. There are a lot of fraudsters in this sphere. Strive to get a work visa to Finland on your own. If you approach this issue responsibly, the procedure will not take much time and effort.

Before applying to the Finnish Consulate for a visa, the applicant must find a Finnish employer who guarantees a foreigner employment (labor contract). Keep in mind that priority is always given to locals and Europeans. Analyze the needs of the Finnish labor market and soberly assess your chances. Pay special attention to the recognition of qualifications, many professions in Finland are regulated. Read more here. A degree from a Finnish university is ideal.

After a successful job search and signing a contract, the employer notifies the local authorities of the intention to employ a foreigner by filling out a special form (TEM 054). This is the basis for the issuance of a combined residence permit in Finland with the right to work. Usually the document entitles the applicant to employment in a specific field and is tied to a specific company. However, there are cases in which it is possible to change the workplace and the field of activity.

Registration of a work visa to Finland

Thus, foreigners who plan to work on Finnish territory for a period of more than 3 months do not apply to the Finnish Embassy for a work visa, but for a residence permit with the right to work. This is a document in the form of a plastic card with biometric data of the holder. Sometimes, in case of short-term employment (up to 90 days), it is enough to issue a visa. Responsibility for issuing work visas and residence permits with the right to work in Finland lies with 2 authorities:

  • Employment and Economic Development Office, which analyzes the possibility of a foreigner to take up a job based on the situation on the Finnish labor market.

  • The Immigration Service, which makes the final decision on the alien's admission to Finland.

Depending on the number of applications, the processing time for a residence permit in Finland with the right to work takes up to 4 months on average. If you apply for an EU Blue Card – up to 3 months. From the moment of making a positive decision to receiving a biometric card at the Finnish Consulate takes no more than 2-3 weeks. Usually a foreigner is granted a temporary residence permit (type B) for a maximum of 1-2 years. Permanent employment for more than 2 years will allow to issue a continuous residence permit (type A).

The cost of a residence permit with the right to work in Finland in 2024:

  • electronic application (via the website) – 490 euros.

  • paper application (through the Consulate) – 740 euros.

Important. The application processing fee is not refundable even in case of refusal to issue a residence permit or if you cancel the application yourself.

Working visa to Finland without a residence permit

Finnish laws provide for a limited number of conditions for employment of foreigners, in which a residence permit is not required. In 2024, applicants from third countries can obtain a work visa to Finland and work without a residence permit in the following cases:

  • The term of the labor contract does not exceed 90 days and the foreigner's profession is a teacher, translator, sports referee (arbiter), professional artist, athlete or coach.

  • Seasonal work (not more than 3 months) in the field of animal husbandry or agriculture – picking berries, fruits and vegetables.

  • Temporary employment (up to 90 days) on the basis of an agreement with Finnish educational institutions for research activities.

  • Regardless of nationality, short-term work on Finnish territory to promote services or goods in Finland can be performed by employees of foreign companies registered in an EU (EEA) country.

  • Seafarers working on foreign ships that temporarily visit Finnish ports and personnel (crew members) of other vehicles in Finland.

  • Representatives of foreign companies may perform professional activities related to the presentation of their products in Finland for 90 days.

  • International drivers who deliver goods to (from) Finland.

  • Employees of travel agencies who accompany a group of people vacationing in Finland on a trip.

Important. A residence permit or a valid visa from one of the Schengen countries allows you to carry out all of the above activities on Finnish territory. For example, many applicants are interested in working in Finland on a Polish work visa. This is theoretically possible, but it is still recommended to apply for a visa directly to the Finnish Consulate.

Documents for a work visa to Finland

Documents for a work visa to Finland

The application and the list of documents for a work visa must be submitted to the Finnish Consulate or a specialized visa center by the applicant in person.

  1. Correctly filled in and signed visa application form.

  2. One color photo of the established sample, taken within the last 6 months. Size – 4.7x3.6 cm.

  3. A passport issued at least 10 years ago and valid for at least 3 months longer than the period of stay in Finland. Plus copies of a civil passport.

  4. Health insurance with coverage of 30,000 euros or more.

  5. An official invitation letter from a Finnish employer.

Important. The cost (consular fee) of a work visa to Finland in 2024 is 35 euros.

A work visa to Finland is issued within 14 calendar days. During this time, the applicant may be called for an interview or to clarify certain data. You should apply for a visa not earlier than 3 months and not later than 15 days before the date of the planned trip.

EU Blue Card to Finland

Some foreign specialists from countries outside the EU can apply for Blue Card EU to Finland, for this purpose the following conditions are stipulated:

  • A valid contract with a Finnish employer for at least 1 year.

  • The job requires from the applicant high professionalism, experience and special skills.

  • A university diploma confirming qualifications.

  • Salary above the national average (reviewed annually).

Important. To obtain an EU Blue Card in Finland in 2024, the minimum salary of a foreigner must be at least 5,209 euros per month.

As a conclusion, we note that it is easier to obtain a residence permit with the right to work in Finnish companies for foreigners with particularly valuable skills, a university degree and a contract that provides for a salary of more than 3 thousand euros per month. In this case, even a special permit from the Employment and Economic Development Office is not required. A standard work visa to Finland is most often associated with unskilled work, such as strawberry picking.

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