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Supervision of foreign nationals

Supervision of foreign nationals

The police monitor adherence to the Aliens Act and regulations based on it. 

Supervision of foreign nationals is a statutory duty of the police on the basis of the Aliens Act. It is primarily carried out as part of all other basic police duties, such as criminal investigation, emergency assignments, traffic enforcement, supervision of restaurants and tasks related to public order and safety. 

The police monitor foreign nationals’ right of residence as part of all police tasks

When the police encounter a person in their duties who, upon verification of their identity, proves to be a foreign national, the police will verify their right of residence. 

The conditions of foreign nationals’ right of residence in Finland are described in the Aliens Act. If these conditions are not met, the foreign national in question does not have right of residence. 

Examples of the conditions that right of residence rests on:

  • If a foreign national’s visa or residence permit expires, or they receive a legally valid refusal of entry or deportation decision, they must exit the country. If they do not exit, they may be considered to be in violation of the Aliens Act. Additionally, they may be subjected to a fixed-term or indefinite entry ban. 
  • If a foreign national who is subject to an entry ban is found to be present in Finland, they will be found to have committed a breach of their entry ban. This may result in a fine or imprisonment and a decision on removal from the country.

If a foreign national who has received a refusal of entry or deportation decision does not comply with said decision, it is the police’s duty to remove them from the country. They will be returned to their country of origin or to another country specified in the deportation decision. 

Thematic monitoring based on analysis

Supervision of foreign nationals can also be carried out as thematic monitoring based on analysis. The police organise both national and regional monitoring operations directed at locations identified through analysis. Information about locations where foreign nationals may be residing or working illegally is collected through advance analysis. 

Victims of human trafficking may also be identified while carrying out monitoring activities. The police primarily direct these victims to the assistance system for victims of human trafficking. At the same time, the police will consider whether the preconditions exist for commencing a pre-trial investigation. 

The police’s role in asylum matters

If a person intends to make an application for international protection, also known as an asylum application, they should submit it to the police or border guard when arriving in the country or as soon as possible following their arrival. All police departments have the ability to receive asylum applications and register asylum seekers. 

After the application has been submitted, the asylum seeker will be instructed to take residence in a reception centre designated by the Finnish Immigration Service, which will take over the processing of the asylum matter.  

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Frequently asked questions about removal from the country

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