The right to work must be verified
The right to work must be verified - Alasivu
The employer is required to ensure that foreign employees, working in Finland, have a right to work in Finland. At a construction site, the main contractor or other project supervisor must ensure that all foreigners working at the site have the right to work. The same applies to the employer exercising main authority at a shipyard area. In other words, the aforementioned must verify that foreign employees employed by Finnish companies also have the right to work.
The client also has the obligation to verify the right to work when workers employed by a foreign employer work in contracting or subcontracting work, as temporary agency workers or as internal transfers within the company.
The right to work may be confirmed by a passport, other official travel document or residence permit card. When hiring a foreign employee, the employer must verify the employee’s right to work before concluding an employment contract or before the employee starts to work.
Further information: Passports and other travel documents. The Finnish Border Guard.
Grounds for the right to work
A foreign employee may have the right to work in Finland on any of the following grounds:
- citizenship of an EU or EEA Member State
- a valid residence permit for an employed person, or
- a residence permit is not required as per the Aliens Act or the Seasonal Workers Act.
Depending on the permit type, the right to work may be limited to a specific sector or to work in the employment of a specific employer. The right to work may also be valid for a limited period only, depending on whether the application for the extended permit has been submitted on time before the expiry of the previous permit.
Citizens of the Nordic countries, Member States of the EU, Liechtenstein and Switzerland do not need to apply for a residence permit in order to work in Finland. They have the right to work in Finland on the grounds of their citizenship.
Employees who are not citizens of any of the aforementioned countries generally need a residence permit for an employed person or another kind of residence permit allowing for paid employment.
The Aliens Act lists a number of scenarios where employment in Finland is allowed without a residence permit for an employed person.
Working in Finland. Finnish Immigration Service.
Right to work. Finnish Immigration Service.
Right to work without a residence permit. Finnish Immigration Service.
Seasonal work. Finnish Immigration Service.
When is a residence permit not needed?
The Aliens Act lists a number of scenarios where employment of a national of a non-EU/EEA country is allowed without a residence permit. The situations can be related to, for example, short-term work tasks in science, culture and sports. Also an asylum seeker can work without a residence permit depending on verification of identity after a period of three or six months of having sought asylum. In addition, in seasonal work in agriculture or tourism, as per the Seasonal Workers Act, a person can work on the basis of a seasonal work visa or a seasonal work certificate for a maximum of 90 days.
Students have a limited right to work
A student's residence permit may be used to complete an internship or thesis included in their studies without restrictions.
A student with a residence permit may work an average of 30 hours a week in any field. The number of hours per week may be exceeded some weeks, as long as the average remains 30 hours per week at the end of the year.
Further information: Working and internships during studies. Finnish Immigration Service.