Checklist for emigrants
Once you have decided to go abroad, familiarise yourself with the working life and customs in the destination country well in advance. A lot of things have to be done before leaving. When you are well prepared, you will adapt more quickly to the new country and culture.
Transfer of unemployment security and employment history to an EU or EEA country or Switzerland
If you are looking for work in another EU or EEA country or Switzerland, check whether you are eligible for unemployment security in Finland for the duration of your job search. You can transfer your unemployment benefits to another EU or EEA member state or Switzerland for a maximum period of three months while you look for a job if you
- are eligible for a basic unemployment allowance or earnings-related unemployment benefit and
- have been unemployed for at least four weeks before you go abroad.
To enable the transfer of the unemployment security, order a U2 form from the party that pays your benefit, i.e. Kela or your unemployment fund.
You can transfer your employment history from one country to another using the U1 form, which you will receive from the payer of your unemployment security, i.e. Kela or the unemployment fund. Remember to also ask for a U1 form from your local officials once you decide to stop working in another country. You will need it when you come back to Finland.
For more information, contact the TE Office, the local government pilot, Kela, or the unemployment fund.
Please submit the following notices before moving abroad.
- If you are an unemployed job seeker, notify the TE Office or the local government pilot of your move.
- Submit a notice of change of address in the E-services of the Digital and Population Data Services Agency and Posti. You can also submit the notice using a paper form that you receive from Posti or the Digital and Population Data Services Agency. You must submit your notice of change of address at least one week after you have moved. The notice can also be submitted in advance, at the earliest one month before the date of the move.
- Notify your building or property manager of your move.
- Notify the Tax Administration of your move.
- Notify Kela of your move so that, if necessary, you can be issued with a European Health Insurance Card.
Remember to take all your important documents with you
- Your passport is still the handiest form of identification, even though an official identification card should be enough in the Nordic countries and the Schengen region. If required, take your visa and vaccination certificates. Check whether you will need a residence or work permit in your destination country.
- Be prepared to present your birth certificate.
- Get an international driving licence or ask the Automobile and Touring Club of Finland (ATCF) if there are any time limits for your Finnish driving licence.
- If you intend to take a pet with you, check the website of the Ministry of Agriculture and Forestry for the documents you may need, such as a EU pet passport.
Arrange your financial matters beforehand
- Find out how you can submit your tax returns to Finland while you are abroad.
- Check whether you will accrue any employment pension while you work abroad.
- Agree on any necessary standing payment orders with your bank. Remember to also check whether your bank has a so-called correspondent bank in your destination country.
- The need for insurance is affected by whether you will be working while you are abroad. If you are staying in an EU or EEA member state, you are already entitled to basic health care at local prices. But when you intend to move outside the EU and EEA region, consider whether you will need additional insurance.
- If necessary, you can provide a contact in Finland with the power of attorney for any matters related to your bank or taxation, for example.
Get to know the conditions in the destination country well in advance
Before you move, you should check at least the following details on your destination country:
- the websites of Finnish diplomatic missions
- the apartments that are available and how they have been furnished, as well as their costs and electric plugs
- the level and costs of medical and dentistry services as well as the related insurances
- its culture and living conditions.
Things to remember while you are in your destination country
Submit the following notices:
- If you have informed your TE Office that you intend to go to an EU or EEA member state to look for a job for a maximum duration of three months, remember to also register with the destination country’s labour services. Submit your notice within seven days after your date of departure so that you will be able to collect your unemployment allowance during the duration of your trip.
- Submit an immigration notice and send your contact information to the local Finnish diplomatic mission. When you move to another Nordic country, register yourself with the country’s registration authority.
Check that you have the following contracts and agreements:
- Ask for an employment contract in writing.
- Sign a written lease for your apartment.
- Make any necessary electricity, gas and water supply agreements.
- Sign a banking agreement.
Find out where your health care providers are and the emergency numbers.
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