Bringing a spouse from abroad to live in Finland will become more difficult if the Ministry of the Interior proceeds with a draft bill that would also oblige Finnish citizens to demonstrate their ability to financially support their spouse and family in Finland.
The draft bill, which is part of the upcoming overhaul of the Aliens Act, is currently being circulated for comments.
“Finnish citizens have previously been the exception in the law because the income requirements have not been applied to them. This is the approach we took in the preparatory work, but we'll see how we'll move forward,” Riitta Koponen, a legislative adviser at the Ministry of the Interior, says in an interview with Uusi Suomi.
“We'll see what the comments are like and how we can move forward politically,” she specifies.
Koponen emphasises that the income requirements effectively stipulate that the supporter must be able to support his or her family without resorting to social assistance.
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The income requirements will vary on a case-by-case basis, but the Finnish Immigration Service (Migri) has published guidelines for the levels of income required to support one or more family members in Finland. Certain social security benefits, such as child benefits and student financial aid, will be taken into consideration in determining the requirements.
The guidelines indicate that a family of two adults and two under-age children will be required to provide proof of monthly earnings of at least 2,600 euros. A family of two adults, in turn, will be required to provide proof of monthly earnings of at least 1,000 euros.
Koponen admits that the requirements laid out in the draft bill are, in some respects, stricter for Finns than asylum seekers. No income requirements are imposed on people who have been granted asylum or have entered the country as quota refugees, if their family members apply for a residence permit no later than three months after they have been granted refugee status.
Aleksi Teivainen – HT
Illustration: The Finnish Immigration Service
Source: Uusi Suomi