The Finnish Immigration Service has announced that all residence permits granted for temporary protection will be extended automatically until March 4, 2024.
According to a press release, all residence permits granted on the basis of temporary protection, such as Ukrainians fleeing the warzone, will have their permits automatically renewed, SchengenVisaInfo.com reports.
“Normally, clients who wish to extend their residence permits would need to submit an application. Now that the law concerning these permits has been amended, we can extend the permits without requiring any action from the client,” the Regional Head of Section Minna Serradj from the Asylum Unit, said.
Those eligible will be informed regarding the residence permit extension and their residence permit card, for which the Finnish Immigration Service must have their current contact information.
A residence permit and residence permit cards that have been issued for temporary protection can be used to prove the legal stay in Finland to the holder and grant the holder a right to work. Normally, the residence permit card has to be renewed when it expired but now applicants can continue using their old card for a certain period.
Those eligible for residence permits under temporary protection can also apply for such a residence permit card free of charge, with the applications having a deadline until January 25, 2023. The application has to be submitted to Enter Finland.
Furthermore, people who have obtained temporary protection status can apply for residence in the municipality on the basis of one year of residence in the country. Applications can be submitted starting on March 1. Those with a municipality of residence will have more access to services than those who are residing in an asylum centre.
“When Ukrainian clients get a municipality of residence, the municipality and the wellbeing services county will provide them with the services they need, and they will no longer be clients of a reception centre,” the Head of Section Olli Snellman from the Reception Unit, said.
He also said that all those in need will be offered services. Immigrants who don’t intend to apply for a municipality of residence will remain clients of their respective reception centre and can continue to receive services as they did prior to the announcement.
Finland has sheltered thousands of Ukrainians and just recently Ukrainians staying in Estonia are being offered the possibility to move to Finland. More specifically, Finnish authorities announced they are ready to receive 50 to 100 Ukrainians per week, in a bid to help Estonian authorities to address the overburden caused by the high number of refugees.