Separation or divorce from a partner can be an especially trying matter in Finland if you are a foreigner and a man. We have learned of a new case that was brought to our attention.
This is how it usually how events pan out: A foreigner gets married to a Finnish woman, they have a child and then divorce. The man does not get a residence permit. He is forced to leave the country or get deported.
Below is a decision in 2018 by the Finnish Immigration Service (Migri) to reject Abul’s* residence permit on family grounds.
Ardian* is a 24-year-old Albanian who moved to Finland a bit over three years ago. He came to Finland to find work. He met a Russian woman, got married, had a child, and separated.
“I have been waiting for three years to get my residence permit,” he said. “Even if I have a child in Finland, Migri, has turned down my requests.”
He said that he is appealing Migri’s decision in court and expects a decision soon, probably in April.
Ardian,* who lives in Vantaa, said that he has always worked (today in construction) in Finland, paid taxes and never asked for a cent of social welfare.
He said that he even moved to a construction site in Kittlä in Lapland and works today on top of a 39-meter tower. He said that if he refused to work in such high places, his boss would fire him.
Ardian claims that foreign construction workers do work that Finns would not normally do.
Since he does not have a residence permit, he can work legally but does not have any rights from Kela (Social Insurance Institution of Finland), even if given sick leave.
“I once fractured two fingers at work and the doctor gave me two-month sick leave,” he said. “I had to return back to work and could not stay at home because I wasn’t making any money. Kela refused to pay me any support.”
Apart from working with few rights, his daughter is one of the main reasons he wants to remain in Finland.
“It’s so unjust! If I could, I’d ask the Finnish authorities why I am being treated in this way,” Ardian continued. “I have a daughter, which I love very much but am not allowed to see. Don’t I have a right to stay in this country?”
- Finnish Immigration Service: “Your wife’s unborn child can grow up without you; is the child going to be raised a Muslim?” PART II (15.8.2018)
- A Moroccan called Majid who was deported despite being married to a Finn (28.6.2018)
- Another case of an Iraqi asylum seeker married to a Finn with a five-month child who may face deportation (18.4.2018)
Ardian cited “differences in lifestyle” for his divorce with his wife.
“My ex-wife wanted us to live off Kela but I refused to,” he said without providing any further explanation.
Ardian said that returning to Albania was not an option for him.
“That whole country is so corrupt and there is a lot of crime there,” he concluded. “I cannot also go back because my daughter is here. She loves me very much.”
* The name of the person was changed to protect his identity.