Visa and residence permit of a Finnish citizen's family member

In accordance with section 37 of the Aliens Act (Ulkomaalaislaki 301/2004), a Finnish citizen's foreign family members are:

  • the spouse of a Finnish citizen
  • a person in a registered partnership with a Finnish citizen
  • an unmarried child under 18 years of age, whose guardian or the spouse of the guardian resides in Finland
  • if the person residing in Finland is a minor, his or her guardian is the family member

Persons living in a marriage-like relationship and sharing the same household are comparable to a married couple regardless of their sex, provided that they have lived together for at least two years. The two-year requirement does not apply if the persons have a child in their joint custody or if there are other weighty reasons.

Residence permit application by a family member who is a visa national

If you are a family member of a Finnish citizen and you intend to travel to Finland for a period of time exceeding three months, please follow the instructions in paragraph 1 or 2:.

  1. Apply for a residence permit at a Finnish mission either in your home country or in the country of departure where you have a legal residence well in advance. The residence permit application must be submitted in person.  Read more about the application of a residence permit at the Finnish Immigration Service website.
  2. Apply for a visa at a Finnish mission either in your home country or in the country of departure where you have a legal residence. If you are eligible for a visa based on the Visa Code, you can apply for an extended residence permit at the Finnish Immigration Service. Please note that to get a visa the visa applicant must fulfil the requirements of the Visa Code. A visa is not granted even to a family member of a Finnish citizen automatically.

Residence permit application by a family member who is exempt from the visa requirement

If you do not need a visa to Finland, you can stay in the country for a maximum of 90 days.

If you are a Finnish citizen's family member and you intend to travel to Finland for a longer stay than three months, you can apply for a residence permit in advance at a Finnish mission.

You can submit a residence permit application at the Finnish Immigration Service, too. For further information, please visit www.migri.fi.