Importing a motor vehicle to Finland as removal goods

Amendments to the Car Tax Act on 1 January 2015

A number of amendments to the Car Tax Act entered into force on 1 January 2015. The tax reductions for motor vehicles imported to Finland as removal goods were abolished.

An individual who has moved to Finland by 31 December 2017 is eligible for the tax reduction if the motor vehicle taxed as a vehicle imported to Finland as removal goods is registered for the use of the individual in question or if a binding agreement on the purchase of the vehicle has been made by 31 December 2014.

Additionally, individuals moving to Finland can have the tax reduction also if the vehicle was registered for his or her spouse’s use by 31 December 2014. In this case, the old rules would apply. A motor vehicle is deemed registered for the use of an individual if he or she has been entered as the owner, possessor or user of the vehicle in the Finnish vehicle register.

The provisions of the Car Tax Act restricting the selling or transfer of motor vehicles without payment of the car tax continue to apply to reduced-tax vehicles brought to Finland as removal goods.

Car Tax Act (www.finlex.fi; in Finnish)

Bringing motor vehicles to Finland as removal goods

As a rule, a car tax declaration for the vehicle must be submitted to the Finnish Tax Administration if the intention is to take the vehicle into traffic use in Finland. For motor vehicles imported from outside the EU, the Finnish Customs will also issue a separate decision in which it approves the exemption of the vehicle from customs duties and VAT.

A motor vehicle may be taxed in Finland as removal goods. The maximum tax reduction is 13,450 euros. The tax reduction can only be granted to one vehicle (one car, one van or one motorcycle) at a time.

The tax reduction can be granted on the following conditions

  • A private individual imports the vehicle to Finland for their own use.
  • The individual bringing the vehicle to Finland is immigrating to Finland.
  • The individual in question has lived outside Finland for a continuous period of at least one year immediately before moving to Finland.
  • The motor vehicle had been in the ownership of the individual in question or his/her spouse or in their possession under conditions leading to ownership for at least six months immediately before the individual in question moved to Finland.
  • The motor vehicle is brought to Finland as removal goods. The vehicle is considered to have been imported as removal goods if it is brought to Finland within 12 months of the date on which the individual moves to Finland or no earlier than three months before that date. A car tax declaration for the vehicle must also be submitted to the Finnish Tax Administration within 18 months of the date on which the individual moves to Finland.
  • The individual has only stayed in Finland on a temporary basis during the year immediately preceding the move to Finland. If the individual in question had stayed in Finland as a tourist or for other similar reasons, the stay can be considered temporary if it had lasted for no more than 72 days. Occasional work can be considered temporary if the individual had not stayed in Finland for more than 40-50 days. The total duration of the temporary stay in Finland may not exceed 72 days. This total may only be exceeded for compelling reasons.
  • An individual that has previously lived in Finland has not been a full-time student during the year immediately preceding the move to Finland.
  • If the individual in question has previously imported a reduced-tax or tax-exempt motor vehicle to Finland, the deadline for tax-exempt vehicle transfer has expired before the individual moves to Finland.

Registering a motor vehicle by 31 December 2014

A motor vehicle can be considered as registered for the use of an individual in if the individual in question has been entered as the owner, possessor or user of the vehicle in the Finnish vehicle register. The matter can be checked from the registration certificate.

Binding agreement

An agreement is binding on all parties. For example, the seller must deliver the product, the buyer must pay the agreed price on the agreed date and the goods or services purchased must be as agreed. The individual moving to Finland has been able to conclude a binding agreement if he/she had full legal capacity at the time. The purchase agreement must have been concluded by 31 December 2014. The individual moving to Finland is not eligible for reduced car tax if the agreement has been concluded on or after 1 January 2015.

Stay outside Finland

The transitional provision may apply even if the stay outside Finland had started during 2015 if all other conditions are met.

See also: Declaration of vehicle use

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