Academic studies in other countries

The fact that you are studying in another country has no impact on your taxes, and thus you are not required to report it to the Tax Administration.  However, if you also are gainfully employed while you pursue your studies in that country, you will be expected to observe the relevant tax rules that govern receipts of foreign-sourced incomes.  Similarly, you will be expected to observe the relevant tax rules, and to learn about them sufficiently, if you have plans to start working in another country on a temporary basis.

Finland will continue to be the country of taxation for the academic grant that the Social Insurance Institution (Kela) pays to you during the period when you pursue studies overseas.  Kela will withhold Finnish tax on the amounts.  For more information

Students who work

If you work overseas for a foreign employer you will not be able to use a Finnish tax card.  Instead, you should contact the local tax office, taking with you your passport, and either your student's ID card or a certificate in English or the local language that confirms your academic status as a student. Your withholding tax rate will probably be lower if you show the local tax authorities proof of your student status.  You can ask the secretary for international affairs at your educational institution for the necessary certificate.  We also recommend that you make active inquiries about your tax obligations in the country where you are studying, including whether or not you need to complete an income tax return form and send it to a tax office.

Report your foreign-sourced income along with any Finnish-sourced income with a tax return

Tax Return on the Web (tax.fi/taxreturn) is closed.

You can no longer submit details for 2017 online. Please file the details on your pre-completed tax return form and attachment forms, if necessary. Send the forms to the tax office by post.

Foreign income is taxable in Finland. Always check all the information in your pre-completed tax return. Also report yourforeign income and claim for elimination of double taxation online. If the information is correct and no details are missing, you do not have to do anything else. To use the online service, you will need your online banking codes.

You can also file the information on paper:

If you do not file the return online, enter foreign income under Other foreign earned income in the pre-completed tax return. You must then also report the pay for work done abroad and the days you have stayed in Finland on Form 16  (Details on income from foreign sources). Keep all the pay slips and other receipts you have received from your employer.

Duration of stay may affect your taxes

If you work overseas for a continuous period of at least 6 months, special tax rules will sometimes apply.  The rule known as the ‘six-month rule’ may mean that you will not need to pay Finnish tax on your foreign-sourced wages.  The requirements include that you spend no more than six days per month in Finland, on average, and that the other country holds primary taxing rights in respect of your wages.  However, the six-month rule is usually not applicable if your employment overseas is only temporary, and you are mainly a student, not an employee.

Checklist for you who are leaving Finland because of studies

File a notification of move to the Local Register Office

  • If you do a permanent change of address the Tax Administration receives information from the Local Register Office automatically.
  • If you do a temporary change of address to the Local Register Office, you must file a separate change-of-address to the Tax Administration. Print a form for reporting a temporary change of address (3817). Instead of using the form, you can also submit the notification with a free-format letter. The letter must indicate your name, address, personal identity number, new address, and the date on which the change takes effect. 

  • If your foreign address information were to change, you must inform both the Local Register Office and the Tax Administration to keep the files up-to-date.

  • When a Finnish citizen leaves Finland for another country, they continue to be a tax resident of Finland during the calendar year when they leave and for three years after the end of that year.

Take the necessary steps to find out whether you are going to be covered by the Finnish social security system when you pursue your studies elsewhere (Kela, Finnish Centre for Pensions)