May 30, 2023 Finland Relocation Services

Foreign employees' relocation to Finland with their families

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When you're hiring foreign employees who plan on relocating to Finland with their family or spouse, they are likely to have many questions about residency permits, as procedures can vary greatly between different countries. This article will explore the various options and steps to support your employees and their families during their transition.

Relocation with a spouse

Relocating a foreign employee with their marital spouse is often more straightforward than when the employee is in a domestic partnership. However, even for married couples, if the employee is from outside the EU, they must legalize their marriage certificate. Challenges can arise when the couple has lived in different countries, as they must legalize their marriage in the country where they got married. At times, we've seen cases in our immigration team where individuals got married in a different country than their current residence, and their marriage hasn't been legalized as per Finnish requirements.

Also, previous marriages and divorces can complicate the process. In such instances, it's beneficial to engage an immigration expert to navigate the situation.

In contrast, if your employee is in a domestic partnership and they've been in the relationship for at least two years, or they have a child together, their partner can move to Finland with them. Proving the partnership can be challenging if, for example, their home is registered only in one partner's name.

In Finland, authorities generally trust the individuals' word about their relationship if the domestic partnership can be proven. However, there can be cases where authorities may require other evidence. If proving the partnership is not feasible, an application can be made for a residence permit based on the relationship, but this can make the application process more complex.

Residency permits for other family members

For employees with children, residency permit situations are usually straightforward. But, obtaining and legalizing certificates can become complex if the child was born in a different country from the current residence. Legalizing adoption and considering custody for an adopted child are other factors to consider. Post-divorce custody situations may require additional documentation, especially if both parents are not relocating to Finland with the child.

In Finland, the official definition of family primarily includes spouses and children. In many countries, the concept of family is broader, potentially leading to confusion when relocating employees to Finland. It's common for queries to come up regarding whether an employee's parents can also obtain a residency permit, and occasionally, questions arise about, for example, godchildren. In such cases, applying for a visa instead of a residency permit is often recommended.

Supporting your foreign employees and their families during their relocation to Finland can present challenges, but with the right information and assistance, it can be a smooth process. If you require help navigating immigration issues for your foreign employees or their family members, don't hesitate to reach out to us!

Published by Finland Relocation Services May 30, 2023
Finland Relocation Services