In some situations, citizenship can also be obtained by means of a notification. In addition, in some exceptional cases citizenship can be granted based on being born in Finland.
Applying for citizenship
You can apply for Finnish citizenship once you have turned 18, you have lived permanently in Finland the required number of years, you have a satisfactory oral and written command of Finnish or Swedish language or a command of the corresponding level in Finnish or Swedish Sign Language and your identity has been proven in a reliable manner. In addition, there are other conditions, you have to report, for example, your source of income. At the same time, you can also apply for citizenship for your underage child living under your care.
If you have committed a crime or if you have not, for example, paid your taxes, this can be an obstacle to receiving Finnish citizenship.
Read more on the InfoFinland page How to apply for Finnish citizenship?
Finnish citizenship differs from a residence permit. If you are only just planning moving to Finland, read more on the InfoFinland page Moving to Finland.
Citizenship of a child
At the same time as applying for Finnish citizenship for yourself, you can apply for it for your underage child living under your care. Read more on the InfoFinland page How to apply for Finnish citizenship?
Citizenship of a child being born
A child is automatically granted Finnish citizenship at birth, if:
- the child’s mother is a Finnish citizen,
- the child’s father is a Finnish citizen and married to the child’s mother,
- the child is born in Finland, the father is a Finnish citizen and paternity is confirmed, or
- the child is born in Finland, the non-birth mother is a Finnish citizen, and the maternity of the non-birth mother is confirmed on or after 1 April 2019.
A child may receive Finnish citizenship by notification if the child is born abroad, has a Finnish father or a Finnish non-birth mother, and the parents are not married to each other.
Finnish citizenship can also be granted to a child born in Finland to foreign parents, if the child is not granted any other citizenship through the parents.
There is more information on the InfoFinland page When a child is born in Finland to parents whose child is born in Finland.
Finnish citizenship through notification
The following people can receive Finnish citizenship more quickly and affordably by means of a citizenship notification (kansalaisuusilmoitus):
- Former Finnish citizens
- Children born abroad whose parents are not married to each other and who have a Finnish father or non-birth mother
- Persons between 18 and 22 years of age who have lived in Finland for several years
- Adopted children of Finnish citizens between 12 and 17 years of age
- Citizens of a Nordic Country who have lived in Finland for the past five years.
You can submit a citizenship notification online. Fill in the form in the Enter Finland service. Attach the application appendices. You need to pay the application processing fee at that time. After you submit the notification, remember to monitor your Enter Finland account.
After filling in the form in the Enter Finland service, you have three months to go and prove your identity. You can prove your identity at a service point of the Finnish Immigration Service or, abroad, at a Finnish diplomatic mission. You can find out from the Ministry for Foreign Affairs which diplomatic missions you can visit to prove your identity. Make an appointment in advance. Bring a personal identification document and the original copies of the application appendices.
If you are unable to submit a citizenship notification online, you can also do it using a paper form.
More information on lodging a citizenship notification can be found on the website of the Finnish Immigration Service.
Finland allows multiple citizenship, i.e. that you are a citizen of another country in addition to being a Finnish citizen.
However, not all countries allow multiple citizenship. Before applying for Finnish citizenship, it is advisable to find out whether or not multi-nationality is permitted in the country where you have citizenship. If the country in question does not allow multiple citizenship, you may lose your status as a citizen of that country when you obtain Finnish citizenship.
Multiple citizenship can be useful but also disadvantageous. For example, you should check whether you are liable to go into military service in more than one country of citizenship or whether it is sufficient to have a certificate of completed military service from one country. Multiple citizenship can prove useful, for example, when moving from one country to another or seeking employment.
The Finnish Immigration Service advises on questions about nationality:
- Tel. 0295 419 626 on Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday from 10:00–11:00
A child’s multiple citizenship
A child can be a citizen of both Finland and another country. This depends on whether the other country accepts the child’s multiple citizenships (monikansalaisuus). Ask about it at your own country’s Diplomatic Mission.
Can you lose Finnish citizenship?
You can lose Finnish citizenship, if
- you also hold citizenship in another country when you turn 22 years old and do not have adequate contact to Finland,
- you have provided false or misleading information in your citizenship application or citizenship notification,
- you received Finnish citizenship based on the citizenship of your father and the paternity is disproved, or
- you received Finnish citizenship based on the citizenship of your non-birth mother, and the maternity is disproved.