Below you can find some basic info on registration in the Finnish population information system, and municipality of residence in Finland. You should also read the section on Visas and Residence Permits - registering in the population information system is a different matter from immigration and residence permits.
Finnish Population Information System and the Personal Identity Code
When your studies in Finland last over a year, you need to register yourself into the population information system. This also applies to exchange students on programmes of at least three (3) months of duration. In connection with the registration, you will be given a Finnish Personal Identity Code. Public authorities, banks and employers, for example, may ask to see your personal identity code. Your code is unique and personal – so when not dealing with 'official matters', keep it known only to yourself!
It is possible to apply for a Finnish personal identity code and get registered in the population information system at the same time as you apply for a student residence permit. But registration can also be completed after your arrival into Finland.
If you are an EU citizen, you should first register your right of residence with the Finnish Immigration Service.
The registration into the population system takes place at the Local Register Office – ‘maistraatti’ in Finnish. Information entered onto the register includes your name, date of birth, nationality, family relationships, and address. The information is used in the organisation of elections, for taxation, health care, juridical administration, and also for statistical purposes.
Municipality of Residence
Your local Register Office in Finland also decides whether a Finnish municipality of residence (=domicile) can be entered for you. This is usually possible, if your degree studies in Finland last at least two years.
Municipality of residence means that you have a 'home town/municipality' in Finland. You are then usually entitled to use the local municipal services like health care, day care for children, etc. If you are a non-EU/EEA student, it also affects what kind of an insurance you are required to have when applying for your student residence permit.
Where to find more information
Detailed information and advice on the registration requirements and procedures is available at