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British citizens’ municipality of residence and its consequences

The municipality of residence of a foreign citizen living in Finland is determined under the Municipality of Residence Act. After Brexit, UK citizens will no longer meet the criteria for the determination of the municipality of residence based on an EU citizen’s right of residence. The determination of the municipality of residence is linked to legal residence in the country, and UK citizens will in the future have to meet some other criterion laid down in the Municipality of Residence Act in order to have a municipality of residence in Finland.

If a special act is passed in Finland under which UK citizens retain their right of residence in this country (for a specified period) based on their prior EU citizenship, they will also retain their municipality of residence on these grounds. Consequently, UK citizens should contact their Local Register Office before Brexit and check that their municipality of residence determined on the basis of an EU citizen’s right of residence is entered in the Population Information System.

The Local Register Offices provide advice on questions regarding registration of home municipality in the Finnish population information system. Personal details about registration of home municipality can be checked on the Suomi.fi online service (https://www.suomi.fi/registers). The service requires strong identification (for example online banking access codes). You can also check your personal details by calling or visiting the Local Register Office. If a British citizen does not have a home municipality registered in the population information system, the person should request for it at the Local Register Office after the right of residence has been registered at the Finnish Immigration Service. The Local Register Offices and the Population Register Centre will later give more specific information about their services for British citizens concerning the Brexit situation.