Moving to Finland from within the EU

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Virgilia
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Moving to Finland from within the EU

Post by Virgilia » Sun Jan 24, 2016 6:05 pm

Hello there. I am planning on permanently moving to Finland from within the EU soon but there's a few things regarding the entire process that are still unclear. I can only assume the registration of right of residence requires me to already have moved into an apartment.

-Is having a bank account for payments more or less necessary in order to rent an apartment?
-How easy is it to open a bank account as a foreigner?
-Is it at all accepted or optimal for me to use a friend's bank account for transactions early on until i fulfil the requirements to open a bank account? (assuming difficulties in opening one initially)
-Finally, is it possible for the registration of right of residence to be denied after i've opened a bank account and started renting an apartment? What would happen in that scenario?

Thanks.
Last edited by Virgilia on Mon Jan 25, 2016 4:26 am, edited 1 time in total.



Moving to Finland from within the EU

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Upphew
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Location: Lappeenranta

Re: Moving to Finland from within the EU

Post by Upphew » Sun Jan 24, 2016 10:18 pm

Virgilia wrote:Hello there. I am planning on permanently moving to Finland from within the EU soon but there's a few things regarding the entire process that are still unclear. I can only assume the registration of right of residence requires me to already have moved into an apartment.

-Is having a bank account for payments more or less necessary in order for that to happen?
-How easy is it to open a bank account as a foreigner?
-Is it at all accepted or optimal for me to use a friend's bank account for transactions early on until i fulfil the requirements to open a bank account? (assuming difficulties in opening one initially)
-Finally, is it possible for the registration of right of residence to be denied after i've opened a bank account and started renting an apartment? What would happen in that scenario?

Thanks.
http://www.poliisi.fi/licences_and_perm ... _residence
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Visa is for visiting, Residence Permit for residing.


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Virgilia
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Re: Moving to Finland from within the EU

Post by Virgilia » Mon Jan 25, 2016 4:30 am

Yes. The form does have an Address in Finland section and i assume it can't be omitted.


Rip
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Re: Moving to Finland from within the EU

Post by Rip » Mon Jan 25, 2016 6:42 am

Virgilia wrote: -Is having a bank account for payments more or less necessary in order to rent an apartment?
The landlord will want to have money on his bank account (assuming he does not want cheat on taxes or something else). He has no need to know your bank account number. Paying the bill with cash in a bank office (finding one that still works with cash, paying the rather high fees) would be a hassle in the long term, but hardly a big issue compared to the other business regarding moving to another country when done a few times.

If you already have an euro denominated SEPA area bank account with online codes in another country (plus a visa master card debit or credit card), you don't perhaps even in longer term need that much a Finnish bank account.
-How easy is it to open a bank account as a foreigner?
I'll skip this one; changed too much over the years.
-Is it at all accepted or optimal for me to use a friend's bank account for transactions early on until i fulfil the requirements to open a bank account? (assuming difficulties in opening one initially)
The recipient only cares that he gets his money. If the bill has no numerical reference code (like typically with private individual landlords) then just but your name with other clarifying text to the right field.
-Finally, is it possible for the registration of right of residence to be denied after i've opened a bank account and started renting an apartment? What would happen in that scenario?
You are an EU citizen? Talking about "right of residence" implies you are, but you do not state that explicitly. Also, I don't really understand what you mean by "what would happen". Without work (as with work there should be no problem with a registration) I would expect things to get difficult here eventually.


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Virgilia
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Re: Moving to Finland from within the EU

Post by Virgilia » Mon Jan 25, 2016 7:23 am

Rip wrote: You are an EU citizen? Talking about "right of residence" implies you are, but you do not state that explicitly. Also, I don't really understand what you mean by "what would happen". Without work (as with work there should be no problem with a registration) I would expect things to get difficult here eventually.
I am indeed an EU citizen. I guess that part came from me not knowing how strict the financial criteria can be considering i'm self-employed. The rest makes sense though. Thanks!


Rosamunda
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Re: Moving to Finland from within the EU

Post by Rosamunda » Mon Jan 25, 2016 1:16 pm

If you are self-employed and planning to work as such in Finland, you might consider having a separate bank account for your business activities. It tends to make the bookkeeping a bit easier and the tax authorities prefer it. If your business is small scale it is not such a big deal though. Will you be registering as a toiminimi (sole trader)?


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Virgilia
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Re: Moving to Finland from within the EU

Post by Virgilia » Mon Jan 25, 2016 3:44 pm

Rosamunda wrote:If you are self-employed and planning to work as such in Finland, you might consider having a separate bank account for your business activities. It tends to make the bookkeeping a bit easier and the tax authorities prefer it. If your business is small scale it is not such a big deal though. Will you be registering as a toiminimi (sole trader)?

I'm essentially an independent contractor so i'm not sure if a separate bank account is necessary. Regarding registration as a sole trader, i'll have to look into what is considered a licensed trade (I do freelance programming work, to clarify). Is there any reason for me to want to register if i don't have to?

Edit: Actually i also wanted to ask. On the right of residence registration form, what exactly should i prepare to be attached in the "information on profession" section?


betelgeuse
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Re: Moving to Finland from within the EU

Post by betelgeuse » Mon Jan 25, 2016 7:15 pm

Virgilia wrote:
Rosamunda wrote:If you are self-employed and planning to work as such in Finland, you might consider having a separate bank account for your business activities. It tends to make the bookkeeping a bit easier and the tax authorities prefer it. If your business is small scale it is not such a big deal though. Will you be registering as a toiminimi (sole trader)?

I'm essentially an independent contractor so i'm not sure if a separate bank account is necessary. Regarding registration as a sole trader, i'll have to look into what is considered a licensed trade (I do freelance programming work, to clarify). Is there any reason for me to want to register if i don't have to?
If you don't register, clients will have more bureaucracy since they will have to use your tax card. If registered, a separate bank account is highly recommended for accounting (in most banks whether you have one or two accounts does not matter for pricing).


betelgeuse
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Re: Moving to Finland from within the EU

Post by betelgeuse » Mon Jan 25, 2016 7:18 pm

Virgilia wrote: -Finally, is it possible for the registration of right of residence to be denied after i've opened a bank account and started renting an apartment? What would happen in that scenario?
Yes. You could be deported.


Rosamunda
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Re: Moving to Finland from within the EU

Post by Rosamunda » Mon Jan 25, 2016 8:06 pm

betelgeuse wrote:
Yes. You could be deported.
Even if the poster is from within the EU? Surely he/she has the right to come here as a tourist as often as he/she likes and even rent a flat and do freelance work (if the work is being delivered outside Finland). I think we had a similar thread a few months ago. Do people really get deported from Finland to Sweden/Germany/Estonia... etc. How do they stop you coming back? There must be tons of EU citizens who spend time in Finland without living here permanently.


Rosamunda
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Re: Moving to Finland from within the EU

Post by Rosamunda » Mon Jan 25, 2016 8:14 pm

Virgilia wrote:
Rosamunda wrote:If you are self-employed and planning to work as such in Finland, you might consider having a separate bank account for your business activities. It tends to make the bookkeeping a bit easier and the tax authorities prefer it. If your business is small scale it is not such a big deal though. Will you be registering as a toiminimi (sole trader)?

I'm essentially an independent contractor so i'm not sure if a separate bank account is necessary. Regarding registration as a sole trader, i'll have to look into what is considered a licensed trade (I do freelance programming work, to clarify). Is there any reason for me to want to register if i don't have to?
If you live here then your business activity will be subject to Finnish tax laws and other regulations. If you are an independent contractor (that's pretty much what a toiminimi is) then you will have to pay Finnish taxes based on your total income. Registering a business is compulsory if your turnover (gross revenue) is more than 8500€ in a 12-month period and it doesn't matter whether or not your business is a "licensed trade"*. So, yes, a separate bank account is a good idea. Registering the business is also a good idea for bookkeeping purposes (and reducing your taxable income).

(*Licence trades include operating an airline, taxi, real estate agency, bank or insurance brokerage, chemical depot and/or manufacturing pharmaceutical products, and the like. It doesn't include web design.)

If you are paid a salary by your employers (rather than billing customers as a sole trader) then you will need to register for social security contributions (pension, healthcare etc) which is also compulsory. In that scenario you probably don't need a separate bank account but you should visit KELA to get an overview of the system. They have a walk-in office in Helsinki: http://www.intofinland.fi/en/contact


betelgeuse
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Re: Moving to Finland from within the EU

Post by betelgeuse » Mon Jan 25, 2016 10:35 pm

Rosamunda wrote:
betelgeuse wrote:
Yes. You could be deported.
Even if the poster is from within the EU? Surely he/she has the right to come here as a tourist as often as he/she likes and even rent a flat and do freelance work (if the work is being delivered outside Finland). I think we had a similar thread a few months ago. Do people really get deported from Finland to Sweden/Germany/Estonia... etc. How do they stop you coming back? There must be tons of EU citizens who spend time in Finland without living here permanently.
If people get deported, it would be for reasons like relying on social security or being a danger to society. I don't think they do anything to people who don't have sufficient funds but are not part of the "system" either.

Tax treaties often have clauses on independent personal services. The flat could constitute a permanent establishment and result in tax liability regardless of where the work is delivered.

https://www.vero.fi/en-US/Companies_and ... xat(21534)

"If an employee works from home, the situation may give rise to a permanent establishment."


Querfeldein
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Re: Moving to Finland from within the EU

Post by Querfeldein » Tue Jan 26, 2016 10:12 am

Virgilia wrote: -Is having a bank account for payments more or less necessary in order to rent an apartment?
No, it's not. If you have a bank account in €, you can make fast SEPA payments in Finland with it. The only advantage of a Finnish bank account (for an employee, if you run a business, it might be different) is the specific Finnish online identification system that is linked to Finnish bank accounts, and that is used by some online shops, as well as by some state institutions for online services.
Virgilia wrote: -How easy is it to open a bank account as a foreigner?
It is easy to open an account, but getting the online payment codes can take time (months) - this has been the recent experience of some of my EU colleagues with Nordea and S-Pankki, but it seems to be hard to predict.
Virgilia wrote: -Is it at all accepted or optimal for me to use a friend's bank account for transactions early on until i fulfil the requirements to open a bank account? (assuming difficulties in opening one initially)
I wouldn't see why not, but I would use your own account (if it's in €) instead. It's less hassle, and you wouldn't have to explain that the payor named in the transaction is someone other than yourself.
Virgilia wrote: Finally, is it possible for the registration of right of residence to be denied after i've opened a bank account and started renting an apartment? What would happen in that scenario?
The two are completely separate. Your right of residence is linked to your employment (unless there are other circumstances such as family), not you having a bank account or your renting an apartment. You will have to name a place of residence when you register, but you don't need a bank account. You will, however, need to be registered to get a bank account (or at least to get those identifying online banking codes).


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Virgilia
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Re: Moving to Finland from within the EU

Post by Virgilia » Wed Jan 27, 2016 8:40 am

Rosamunda wrote:If you live here then your business activity will be subject to Finnish tax laws and other regulations. If you are an independent contractor (that's pretty much what a toiminimi is) then you will have to pay Finnish taxes based on your total income. Registering a business is compulsory if your turnover (gross revenue) is more than 8500€ in a 12-month period and it doesn't matter whether or not your business is a "licensed trade"*. So, yes, a separate bank account is a good idea. Registering the business is also a good idea for bookkeeping purposes (and reducing your taxable income).

(*Licence trades include operating an airline, taxi, real estate agency, bank or insurance brokerage, chemical depot and/or manufacturing pharmaceutical products, and the like. It doesn't include web design.)

If you are paid a salary by your employers (rather than billing customers as a sole trader) then you will need to register for social security contributions (pension, healthcare etc) which is also compulsory. In that scenario you probably don't need a separate bank account but you should visit KELA to get an overview of the system. They have a walk-in office in Helsinki: http://www.intofinland.fi/en/contact
I see. Is business registration made at the tax office? If not, should it be made before or after that?
Last edited by Virgilia on Wed Jan 27, 2016 9:25 am, edited 1 time in total.


Rosamunda
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Re: Moving to Finland from within the EU

Post by Rosamunda » Wed Jan 27, 2016 9:17 am

Which registration? You still didn't make it clear whether you will be operating as a sole trader or as an off-shore employee of a company elsewhere. Do you invoice your work to clients, or do you receive a salary? Impossible to answer your questions without knowing that.

If you work as a sole trader (toiminimi):
- Registering as a sole trader is done at the Patents Office https://www.prh.fi/en/index.html
- Registering for VAT is through the tax office (Vero)
- Paying social security contributions as an entrepreneur (YEL) is done through a private pension company and healthcare is through KELA. UNemployment cover is optional.

If you intend to work as the employee of an off-shore company (ie receiving a salary here from elsewhere in the EU) then I'm not sure in what order you have to do everything. And I'm not sure how you would get into the system.

So, I suggest you email the office I linked to above. It's always better to get general advice from the source.


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