Brexit – Frequently asked questions

Finnish Prime Minister's Office has compiled information on Brexit. These pages offer information, for example, on the negotiation process and the withdrawal agreement and on how UK and Finnish citizens and businesses should prepare for a withdrawal without an agreement. Read more here: Information about Brexit. 

Moving and living

I am a Finnish citizen permanently living in the UK. Should I apply to the EU Settlement Scheme to register my right to stay in the UK?

In accordance with the instructions of the UK Government, almost all EU citizens permanently resident in the UK and their family members will have to register through the EU Settlement Scheme in order to continue living in the UK. At the moment, registration through the EU Settlement Scheme is voluntary. According to current information, the application must be submitted either by the end of December 2020 or by the end of June 2021, depending on whether the UK withdraws from the EU without or with an agreement.

For information about the rights and status of EU citizens in the UK and about registration, go to the Home Office website: Stay in the UK after it leaves the EU ('settled status')

For expert advice on the EU Settlement Scheme, call the EU Settlement Resolution Centre, tel. 0300 123 7379 (in the UK) or +44 203 080 0010 (outside the UK).
Monday to Friday 8.00–20.00, Saturday and Sunday 9.30–16.30
Contact form

You can also subscribe to the Home Office email alerts on the status of EU citizens: Gov.uk: Status of EU nationals in the UK – email alerts

For the contact details of official and registered Immigration Advisers, go to Find an Immigration Adviser

 

What is the permanent residence document for EU citizens? How does it differ from the EU Settlement Scheme?

At present, a Finnish citizen who has lived permanently in the UK under certain conditions for at least five years can register his or her permanent residence document. This is based on EU legislation and may be useful if you want to apply for UK citizenship, for example. This is different from the EU Settlement Scheme registration system. Read more: Gov.uk: Apply for a permanent residence document if you are from the EU, EEA or Switzerland.

However, according to the UK Government, almost all EU citizens permanently resident in the UK must register through the EU Settlement Scheme, even if they have already received a 'registration certificate' or 'permanent residence document'. For information about the rights and status of EU citizens in the UK and about registration, go to the Home Office website: Stay in the UK after it leaves the EU ('settled status')

For expert advice on the EU Settlement Scheme, call the EU Settlement Resolution Centre, tel. 0300 123 7379 (in the UK) or +44 203 080 0010 (outside the UK).
Monday to Friday 8.00–20.00, Saturday and Sunday 9.30–16.30
Contact form

For the contact details of official and registered Immigration Advisers, go to Find an Immigration Adviser

 

I am a Finnish citizen about to move to the UK. What should I take into account regarding the UK’s exit from the EU?

For the rules for entering the UK, go to Gov.uk: Entering the UK. For more information, please contact the British Embassy in Helsinki: Gov.uk: British Embassy in Helsinki.

Currently, Finnish citizens can exercise their right to free movement within the EU and move to the UK without a work or residence permit. As long as the UK remains a member of the EU, the rights, obligations and free movement of EU citizens living in the UK will not be affected.

The Brexit deal between the EU and the UK has not yet been signed and there are many developments that may still take place. For current information about Brexit, go to https://vnk.fi/en/information-about-brexit. Prepare for different scenarios and find out how a no-deal Brexit, for example, could affect your situation. More information on travelling to the UK in the event of a no-deal Brexit: Gov.uk: Guidance – Visiting the UK after Brexit:

As always when travelling or moving abroad, read the travel advice for your destination, ensure that your travel documents are valid and contact your destination country’s embassy to see if there are any visa requirements. Submit a travel notification and make sure that you have comprehensive travel insurance. Read more: https://um.fi/entering-finland-and-travelling-abroad.

 

I am a UK citizen permanently living in Finland. Should I register my right to stay in Finland?

The Finnish Immigration Service advises UK citizens who live permanently in Finland to register their right of residence in Finland as soon as possible, if they have not done so already. Instructions for registration and further information: Finnish Immigration Service: Latest information on Brexit.

 

Healthcare, social security and benefits

I am a Finnish citizen and I plan to travel to the UK. Can I use healthcare services if I get sick? 

If you become unexpectedly ill or have an accident in the EU or EEA countries or Switzerland, you will receive treatment with the European Health Insurance Card at the same price as the residents of the country. However, the European Health Insurance Card does not replace travel insurance. It is recommended that travellers always have valid travel insurance, because the European Health Insurance Card does not cover medical transport costs from abroad to the home country, for example.

You can use the European Health Insurance Card in the UK for at least as long as the UK is a member of the EU. In case of a no-deal Brexit, the use of the European Health Insurance Card in the UK will end unless a separate agreement is reached on the matter. Please make sure your travel insurance is valid.

More information on healthcare for EU citizens travelling to the UK after a no-deal Brexit: Guidance – Healthcare for EU and EFTA citizens visiting the UK (gov.uk). More information on healthcare charges in the event of a no-deal Brexit: Guidance – Overseas visitor charging: no-deal Brexit guidance for NHS service providers (gov.uk).

More information on healthcare for EU citizens living in the UK before the withdrawal date, in a no-deal Brexit situation: Guidance – Healthcare for EU and EFTA nationals living in the UK (gov.uk).

As always when travelling abroad, read the travel advice for your destination and ensure that your travel documents are valid. Submit a travel notification and make sure that you have comprehensive travel insurance. Read more: https://um.fi/entering-finland-and-travelling-abroad.

 

I am a Finnish citizen and receive pension from Finland. I am about to move to the UK. Will I receive my Finnish pension in the UK?

You should contact the Social Insurance Institution of Finland (Kela) to see if you are entitled to the Finnish social security, old-age pension or disability pension. For Kela’s information and contact details, go to Kela: International situations. Read more: Kela: Brexit may have some effects on benefits provided by Kela.

Regarding Finnish earnings-related pensions, contact the Finnish Centre for Pensions. For the Centre’s contact details, go to Contact information. Read more: Finnish Centre for Pensions: Brexit would affect our services

 

I am an exchange student in the UK and I have received a decision that I am covered by the Finnish social security. Will this cover continue?

You should contact Kela to see whether you are entitled to Finnish social security. For Kela’s information and contact details, go to Kela: International situations. Read more: Kela: Brexit may have some effects on benefits provided by Kela.

 

Studying 

I am a Finnish citizen studying in the UK. What should I do to continue my studies?

In accordance with the instructions of the UK Government, almost all EU citizens permanently resident in the UK and their family members will have to register through the EU Settlement Scheme in order to continue living in the UK. At the moment, registration through the EU Settlement Scheme is voluntary. According to current information, the application must be submitted either by the end of December 2020 or by the end of June 2021, depending on whether the UK withdraws from the EU without or with an agreement.

For information about the rights and status of EU citizens in the UK and about registration, go to the Home Office website: Stay in the UK after it leaves the EU ('settled status')

For more information on higher education, go to the website of the Universities and Colleges Admissions Service: UCAS.

Information on the possible effects of a no-deal Brexit on university studies in the UK: Guidance – EU exit: no deal preparations for higher education institutions.. See also the website of the Prime Minister’s Office: Information about Brexit.

To check whether you are entitled to Finnish social security during your studies, visit Kela: International situations. More information: Kela: Brexit may have some effects on benefits provided by Kela.

 

I would like to apply to a UK university in the spring 2020. Can I apply if there is a no-deal Brexit?

For more information on higher education, go to the website of the Universities and Colleges Admissions Service: UCAS. You should also contact the university to which you intend to apply.

For the rules for entering the UK, go to Gov.uk: Entering the UK. For more information, please contact the British Embassy in Helsinki: Gov.uk: British Embassy in Helsinki.

A no-deal Brexit will affect those planning to move to the UK. For example, there may be changes to the tuition fees and terms and conditions of student loans applicable to EU citizens. Information on the possible effects of a no-deal Brexit on university studies in the UK: Guidance – EU exit: no deal preparations for higher education institutions.. See also the website of the Prime Minister's Office: Information about Brexit.

As always when travelling or moving abroad, read the travel advice for your destination and ensure that your travel documents are valid. Submit a travel notification and make sure that you have comprehensive travel insurance. Read more: https://um.fi/entering-finland-and-travelling-abroad.

 

Travelling 

I am a Finnish citizen and about to travel to the UK. How long does my passport have to be valid and do I need a visa?

For the rules for entering the UK, go to Gov.uk: Entering the UK. At the moment, when travelling to the UK, your Finnish passport or ID card only has to be valid for the duration of your trip, and Finnish citizens do not need a visa.

More information on travelling to the UK in the event of a no-deal Brexit: Gov.uk: Guidance – Visiting the UK after Brexit. According to current information, EU citizens will not be required to have a visa for short stays in the UK, even in the case of a no-deal Brexit.

As always when travelling abroad, read the travel advice for your destination, ensure that your travel documents are valid and contact your destination country’s embassy to see if there are any visa requirements. Submit a travel notification and make sure that you have comprehensive travel insurance. Read more: https://um.fi/entering-finland-and-travelling-abroad.

 

Can I travel to the UK using my Finnish ID card?

An ID card can be used as a travel document instead of a passport when travelling in EU and EEA countries. Read more: Police: Use of the ID card. At the moment, when travelling to the UK, your Finnish ID card or passport only has to be valid for the duration of your trip, and Finnish citizens do not need a visa.

For the rules for entering the UK, go to Gov.uk: Entering the UK. For more information, please contact the British Embassy in Helsinki: Gov.uk: British Embassy in Helsinki.

More information on travelling to the UK in the event of a no-deal Brexit: Gov.uk: Guidance – Visiting the UK after Brexit. In case of a no-deal Brexit, the UK may decide that identity cards will no longer be accepted as travel documents.

As always when travelling abroad, read the travel advice for your destination, ensure that your travel documents are valid and contact your destination country’s embassy to see if there are any visa requirements. Submit a travel notification and make sure that you have comprehensive travel insurance. Read more: https://um.fi/entering-finland-and-travelling-abroad.

 

I am a citizen of a third country and a family member an EU citizen. I have a residence permit under the UK’s EU Settlement Scheme. Do I need a visa when I travel to Finland?

A residence permit document under the UK’s new EU Settlement Scheme does not entitle family members of an EU citizen who are not EU citizens themselves to visa-free travel in the EU countries.

You must apply for a visa when travelling to Finland, if:

  • you are a family member of an EU citizen but you are not an EU citizen yourself;

  • you have a visa requirement when travelling to the EU, and

  • you only hold a residence permit document under the UK’s EU Settlement Scheme. 

 

I am a UK citizen and about to travel to Finland. How long does my passport have to be valid and do I need a visa?

Citizens of an EU country, Sweden, Norway, Denmark, Iceland, Liechtenstein or Switzerland do not need a residence permit or a visa to visit Finland. You can arrive in Finland if you have a passport or an identity card, which is valid for the duration of your journey. This rule applies to UK citizens as long as the UK is a member of the EU. This rule also applies during a transitional period if the withdrawal agreement negotiated between the EU and the UK enters into force before the UK’s exit.

A no-deal Brexit would affect the travel of UK citizens to Finland. According to current information, UK citizens would not be required to have a short-stay visa in the Schengen area after a no-deal Brexit, but the requirements on the validity of the passport would be amended. UK citizens would not be required to have a visa for stays in the EU of up to 90 days in any 180-day period. However, the travel document must be valid for a minimum of 3 months after the planned exit from the Schengen area.

Read more about the travel documents approved by Finland: Visa requirements and travel documents accepted by Finland.

 

Driving licences 

Can I use my Finnish driving licence in the UK?

For information on the validity of foreign driving licences in the UK, contact the DVLA (Driver and Vehicle Licensing Agency): Gov.uk: Driving in the UK and abroad and Gov.uk: Contact the DVLA.

The UK Government has announced that valid EU driving licences can be used in the UK even after a no-deal Brexit.

If your vehicle is not insured for the UK, you may need an international certificate of motor third party liability insurance (‘Green Card’). Check the validity of your insurance and the necessary documents before you travel.

If you plan to rent a car in the UK, you should also contact the rental company directly. Car rental companies may have more comprehensive driving licence restrictions or age limits, for example.

More information on the use of foreign driving licences in the UK and the vehicle insurance requirements: Guidance – Visiting the UK after Brexit: Driving in the UK (gov.uk).

 

I am a Finnish citizen but I have a UK driving licence. Can I exchange my UK licence for a Finnish one when I move back to Finland?

For information on the validity of foreign driving licences in Finland and on exchanging a foreign licence for a Finnish one, visit the Traficom website: Traficom: Validity of foreign driving licences in Finland and Traficom: Exchanging a foreign driving licence for a Finnish licence


Citizenship 

I am a Finnish citizen who has been residing permanently in the UK for many years. Can I get UK citizenship?

For information on the requirements for acquiring UK citizenship and the application process, contact the UK authorities. More information: Gov.uk: Become a British citizen.

 

Will I lose my Finnish citizenship if I get UK citizenship?

No, you will not lose your Finnish citizenship. The Finnish Nationality Act allows dual and multiple citizenship. A new Nationality Act with less stringent requirements for dual citizenship entered into force on 1 June 2003.

However, it is important to remember that a Finnish citizen who also holds the citizenship of a foreign state can lose their Finnish citizenship automatically at the age of 22 years if the individual does not have a sufficient connection to Finland. An individual can retain their Finnish citizenship if they are deemed to have a sufficient connection to Finland. A sufficient connection to Finland can be demonstrated by applying for a passport or providing notice in writing of their wish to retain their Finnish citizenship.

Maintaining accurate citizenship information in the population register is the responsibility of the individual, and changes in citizenship information must be registered in the population register.

See the Finnish Immigration Service for more information: https://migri.fi/en/permits-and-citizenship

 

I have lost my Finnish citizenship. Can I get my Finnish citizenship back?

Yes. If you are a former Finnish citizen, you can acquire Finnish citizenship by declaration. An underage child in your custody will also receive Finnish citizenship if they are included as a co-applicant in your declaration.

However, it is not possible to acquire citizenship by declaration based only on the fact that you are a descendant of a former Finnish citizen. If you would like to find out whether you are a current or former Finnish citizen, you can ask the Finnish Immigration Service to determine your citizenship status.

See the Finnish Immigration Service for more information: https://migri.fi/en/permits-and-citizenship

 

How can I find out if I am eligible for Finnish citizenship based on family relations?

You can ask the Finnish Immigration Service to determine your citizenship status. Citizenship status refers to a person’s current and previous citizenship, statelessness and unknown citizenship.

See the Finnish Immigration Service for more information: https://migri.fi/en/permits-and-citizenship

 

I am a Finnish citizen who has lived for X years in the UK. I would like to move back to Finland. What do I have to do?

A Finnish citizen who has lived abroad can return freely to their home country. Upon returning to Finland, you must submit a notification of move to the local register office. Kela will decide at what point you will be covered by the Finnish social security system after your return.

More information: Local Register Office: Notification of move and 
Kela: International situations

 

I am a UK citizen. Can I get Finnish citizenship?

Finnish citizenship can generally be acquired based on birth, by either declaration or application. More information about registering a child born abroad and making a declaration of citizenship is available on the Finnish Embassy’s website: Citizenship. For information on applying for citizenship, visit the website of the Finnish Immigration Service: Finnish citizenship.
 

We are happy to answer any other questions you may have. You can find the contact details of the Embassy of Finland in the UK here.