For overseas Filipino workers (OFWs) in Finland, the dream of bringing their families from the Philippines and reuniting with their loved ones can often seem distant and challenging due to the complex immigration procedures.
However, with careful planning, timely documentation, and an understanding of the Finnish immigration system, it is possible for OFWs to navigate the process efficiently and bring their families to Finland in less than a year. By following the necessary steps and taking advantage of available resources, OFWs can embark on a journey that leads to the joyous reunion they yearn for.
Disclaimer: The information posted here is based on the personal experiences shared by the OFW in the video below. Please let this post serve as a guide only. If you have specific questions, you may ask the OFW by commenting on their video on their accounts.
Bringing Families Together in Finland: Quick Guide to Reunification for OFWs
The information presented in this article comes from a YouTube video from the channel “IRENE T. Official.” In this video, the vlogger shares how someone working in Finland can bring their family to the country in less than a year. If you want to watch the full video, then you can click on the link below:
In the video, the vlogger interviewed an OFW from Finland named Nemz. Nemz shared how she was able to bring her family to Finland almost as soon as she got there herself.
To successfully bring her family to Finland, one of the crucial requirements for Nemz was providing proof of funds, which included bank statements from both parties. Specifically, the immigration authorities required bank statements covering the last six months. Nemz’s friend had also gone through a similar process of bringing her husband to Finland. However, before initiating the family reunification process, she had been working in Finland for several years. Among the prerequisites for her were submitting her bank statements, as well as her husband’s, for the previous six months.
The vlogger shared valuable insights on how she accomplished the feat of bringing her loved ones to Finland. Nemz’s own journey involved her arrival in Finland in October 2021, while her family joined her in April 2022. Astonishingly, just one week after their arrival, her family’s reunion was officially approved.
Documents to Submit
- Proof of funds: Bank statements from both parties for the last six months are required as proof of financial capability.
- Previous work experience: Some individuals, like Nemz’s friend, may need to have been working in Finland for a certain period before initiating the family reunification process.
- Successful case example: Nemz met someone who recently moved to Finland and successfully brought their family. This person shared their experience and insights on the process.
- Timeline: Nemz arrived in Finland in October 2021, and her family joined her in April 2022. Their family reunification was approved within one week of their arrival.
- Required documents: The immigration authorities asked for Nemz’s full-time employment contract, TEM form, six months’ worth of pay slips, and bank statements from her Finnish bank.
- Bank statement requirements: The immigration authorities focused on the consistency between pay slips and corresponding bank statements, rather than a specific amount of funds.
During the immigration process, Nemz was required to submit several documents. These included her full-time employment contract, the TEM (Ministry of Economic Affairs and Employment) form, six months’ worth of pay slips, and statements of account from her Finnish bank.
Notably, the immigration authorities did not specify a particular amount in the bank statements. Instead, they focused on verifying the consistency between the payment information on the pay slips and the corresponding bank statements. This meticulous review ensured that Nemz was genuinely employed by the company indicated.
By meticulously adhering to the immigration requirements and providing accurate documentation, Nemz and others like her can navigate the family reunification process in Finland with confidence. With patience, persistence, and a thorough understanding of the procedure, OFWs can create a brighter future by uniting with their families in Finland.
Here are the key points of using Show Money to get your family quickly to Finland:
- The bank did not require a specific amount for family reunification, but the immigration advised a minimum net income of 1100 euros per month for including one child in the application.
- Financial support from the home country (Philippines) is required for the rest of the family.
- Show money requirements: Around 450,000 to 500,000 pesos for an adult and 350,000 to 400,000 pesos for a child.
- An amount of 1 million pesos in the bank can cover expenses for the whole year for both adults and children.
- Show money should be available in the applicant’s bank account 6 months before the embassy appearance.
- No interview at the Finnish embassy, only biometrics.
- Borrowing from relatives and close friends is an option to accumulate the required show money gradually.
The bank did not require a specific amount for her to bring her family to Finland. However, the immigration authorities advised her that to include at least one child under her application, she should have a net income of at least 1100 euros per month. As for the rest of her family, they could provide financial support from their home country, the Philippines.
To meet this requirement, her husband submitted a statement of account demonstrating that they had sufficient funds to support the other family members for the entire year. Her child, Nathan, was covered under her salary, while her husband and their other child had “show money” from the Philippines. The show money for an adult amounted to around 450,000 to 500,000 pesos, while for their other child, it ranged from 350,000 to 400,000 pesos. By having one million pesos in the bank, they could cover the family’s expenses in Finland for the entire year, which was considered a safe amount.
It was crucial for the show money to cover the whole year. If the funds were in a Philippine bank account, the one million pesos, for example, needed to be available six months before the personal appearance at the embassy. For instance, if the appearance was scheduled for September, the show money should already be available in the applicant’s bank account by March of the same year.
Their appearance at the Finnish embassy in the Philippines did not involve an interview; it solely required biometrics.
Although the amount required for show money may seem substantial, as it is not actual spending but a demonstration of funds, she mentioned that it was possible to borrow from relatives and close friends. By gradually accumulating the required show money, they could fulfill the financial aspect of the application.
Finland is Pro-Family Reunification
- The Finnish immigration does not give negative decisions or denials as long as the necessary documents are provided.
- Approval timeline: She applied for her A Visa on April 12 and received approval by April 23.
- Document requirements: The immigration officials requested an updated statement of account, work contract, TEM form, and six months’ worth of pay slips.
- Explanation for limited pay slips: Due to her recent employment start in January, she could only provide three months’ worth of pay slips.
- Show money requirement: The Finnish immigration in Manila requested financial support for the family members not covered by her net income.
- Financial support: The immigration officials advised that the family ties applicants could provide financial support from their home country.
- Alternative option: Some individuals successfully bring their family to Finland without show money, relying solely on their income.
- Gradual family reunification: It is possible to bring family members one at a time instead of waiting for all members to come at once.
The best part of the process is that the Finnish immigration does not give negative decisions or denials as long as the necessary documents are provided. They are willing to wait for the required paperwork to be submitted.
In her case, when she applied for her A Visa on April 12, she received approval by April 23. The immigration officials checked the system and noticed that her family was also included in the A Visa application. They promptly notified her, requesting an updated statement of account, work contract, TEM form, and six months’ worth of pay slips.
Due to her recent start of employment in January of that year, she could only provide three months’ worth of pay slips when she uploaded her documents. However, she provided a letter of explanation clarifying the reason for submitting only three months of pay slips. The Finnish immigration accepted her explanation, and within a week, her family’s approval was granted.
When it comes to the show money requirement, it was not the embassy that requested it, but rather the Finnish immigration in Manila. She raised her concern about not being able to provide financial support for the three members of her family, as her net income only covered one person. The immigration officials advised her that the family ties applicants could provide financial support from their home country. They are considered the applicants for family reunification.
While some Filipinos may worry about meeting the income requirement, there is an alternative option called the “show money” method. The vlogger’s friends successfully brought their family to Finland without show money; they solely relied on their income. They had been residing in Finland for a few years, saving money before initiating the family reunification process.
Another approach that individuals take is bringing family members one at a time. For example, if they have two children, they can bring one child first. It is possible to have all family members join them in Finland without having to wait for a year.
By understanding the available options and requirements, OFWs in Finland can navigate the family reunification process with more confidence and find a suitable approach that suits their specific circumstances.
Social Benefits Considered as Income
The interviewee emphasized the success of her friends who followed the same approach and were able to bring their families to Finland. She highlighted that waiting for a long time is not necessary as long as individuals can borrow the required show money.
To be eligible for family reunification in Finland, it is crucial to have sufficient financial resources from sources other than societal benefits. While certain social benefits are considered as income, there are specific benefits known as ‘social security benefits compensating for expenses’ that can reduce the required financial resources. Examples of such benefits include the following:
- Child benefit
- Child care allowance
- Child maintenance allowance
- Study grant
- Housing allowance
Sufficient financial resources or secure means of support entail having enough funds for both individuals and their families to live in Finland. These financial resources can come from various sources, including employment, private enterprises, assets, or pensions.
The amount of income required depends on the size of the family.
- For one adult: at least 1000 euros per month or 12,000 euros per year.
- For another adult living in the same household: at least an additional 700 euros per month or 8,400 euros per year.
- For one family member younger than 18: an additional 500 euros per month or 6,000 euros per year.
For instance, if an individual wishes to bring their spouse to Finland but has an insufficient net income of only 1400 euros, while requiring 1700 euros, there are options available. Both the person residing in Finland and their partner in the Philippines can provide bank statements as evidence to demonstrate that they possess the financial means to support themselves and their family in Finland.
By following these guidelines and understanding the financial requirements, individuals can take appropriate steps to ensure sufficient financial resources for successful family reunification in Finland.
The process of bringing families to Finland for OFWs (Overseas Filipino Workers) can be achieved in a shorter timeframe by fulfilling the necessary requirements and demonstrating sufficient financial resources. By following the advice shared by the interviewee and leveraging options such as the show money method, individuals can successfully reunite with their loved ones without enduring lengthy waiting periods.
It is important to understand the financial criteria set by the Finnish immigration system, including the required amount of income based on the family size. Utilizing various income sources and considering social security benefits can help meet the financial requirements. By providing the necessary documentation and bank statements, both the OFW and their partner in the Philippines can prove their ability to support their family’s living expenses in Finland. With proper planning and adherence to the guidelines, individuals can navigate the process smoothly and experience the joy of being reunited with their families while working in Finland.