Municipal services include schools, early childhood education and immigrant integration services. Services of the wellbeing services county (hyvinvointialue) include health services and social services.
A municipality of residence is also needed for obtaining a Finnish identity card (henkilökortti) and driving licence (ajokortti). Having a municipality of residence is useful if you plan to stay in Finland for the time being.
You should find out whether you and your family members have the right to a municipality of residence in Finland. The right to a municipality of residence in Finland is determined according to the Act on the municipality of residence. You can check at the local Digital and Population Data Services Agency whether you have the right to a municipality of residence in Finland.
In order to get a municipality of residence in Finland, you must move to Finland permanently. If you live in Finland temporarily, for example moving to Finland for up to a year for studies or work, you usually cannot get a municipality of residence in Finland.
Once you have a municipality of residence, you have the same rights, services and obligations as permanent residents of Finland.
How to obtain a municipality of residence in Finland
Your municipality of residence can be in Finland if:
- you are a Finnish citizen
- you are a citizen of a Nordic country
- you are a resident of an EU country, Switzerland or Lichtenstein and have registered your right of residence in Finland
- you have a valid permanent (P) or continuous (A) residence permit
- you are a family member of a person who has a municipality of residence in Finland
- If you have a valid temporary residence permit (B), you may have a Finnish municipality of residence, but only if you can demonstrate that you intend to live in Finland permanently.
The following factors among others can demonstrate permanent residence:
- you have a job in Finland and your employment contract is valid for at least two years
- you are studying in Finland and your studies will take at least two years
- you are of Finnish origin
- you have previously had a municipality of residence in Finland
- you have continuously resided in Finland for at least one year
Your municipality of residence is usually the municipality in which you live. If you have no accommodation or have accommodation in several municipalities, your municipality of residence is the municipality you yourself consider your municipality of residence and to which you have a close connection, for example through your family ties or job.
If you want your municipality of residence to be entered in the Population Information System, you must always visit the Digital and Population Data Services Agency in person. If your entire family is registered, all family members must visit the Digital and Population Data Services Agency.
If you have a residence permit based on temporary protection
If you have fled Ukraine because of the war and have a residence permit based on temporary protection, you can apply for a municipality of residence once you have lived in Finland for a year and your residence permit has been valid for a year. Read the instructions on the website of the Digital and Population Data Services Agency.