Have you returned to Finland sooner than planned?

If you work outside Finland for at least 6 months, the pay you receive for your work may be exempt from tax in Finland.

During your work abroad, you can stay in Finland for no more than 6 days per month on average. If you stay for longer, you must also pay Finnish tax on your pay. However, if your stay in Finland is due to an unexpected and compelling reason (force majeure), you can stay for longer than 6 days.

In addition, if your work in a foreign country ends unexpectedly before the 6-month limit has been reached due to a force majeure, your pay for the work you did there may still be exempt from tax.

If your work abroad was interrupted or your stay in Finland was prolonged due to the travel restrictions caused by the coronavirus pandemic, this can be considered a force majeure.

If Finland and the country of work have a tax treaty, the treaty must state that the country of work has the right to tax wages in order for the wages to be exempt from tax in Finland. The tax exemption also applies if Finland and the other country do not have a tax treaty.

Read more: Effects of the coronavirus pandemic on taxes on income received under an employment contract in a foreign country (the six-month rule and forces majeures) (available in Finnish and Swedish, link to Finnish)

In addition, please note that the tax exemption for work lasting more than 6 months only applies to work done abroad, not work done in Finland.  Income for work done in Finland, including remote work, is always taxable in Finland.

Remember to check your tax return

File the wages you have received for work done abroad in MyTax at “Foreign earned income – Work on which the 6-month rule is applied” or on Form 16A at “3 Work abroad for which you request implementation of the six-month rule”.

How to report the work period and days of stay in Finland

If your work was interrupted by a force majeure and you must stay in Finland longer than expected for this reason, enter the original intended end date of your work in the foreign country as the end date of the work period.

If your work abroad ended completely because of a force majeure, enter the last actual day of work as the end date of the work period.

Under “Total stay in Finland during the tax year (days)”, enter the total number of days that you stayed in Finland, including the additional days of stay due to a force majeure. In addition, attach a free-form account that includes the following:

  • a specification of the reported days of stay in Finland that were due to an unexpected reason or a force majeure
  • your grounds for why the reason you have specified was unexpected, i.e. unrelated to you or your employer
  • a statement on whether the country where you work has a right to tax your wages based on a tax treaty.

Check from your tax return that your employer has reported the wages paid to you for the work done in Finland as wages taxable in Finland. If necessary, report the wages yourself in MyTax or on Form 50A under “Wages, salaries, fees and compensation”.