The new report studies the authorities’ duty of clarification and information gathering in immigration matters


On 21 August, the Finnish Immigration Service published a report on the authorities’ duty of clarification and information gathering in immigration matters. The report was drawn up by the University of Eastern Finland.

The legal report examines

  • the authorities’ obligation to clarify matters and the clients’ obligation to cooperate in the resolution of their case
  • confidentiality regulations in immigration matters
  • receiving and using information in immigration matters.

The report was commissioned as a part of the project on the development of cooperation between immigration and security authorities (the MISEC project) implemented by the Finnish Immigration Service and the Police University College. The report was drawn up by Tomi Voutilainen, Matti Muukkonen and Evgeniya Kurvinen from the University of Eastern Finland.

“The report supports the development of cooperation between authorities in immigration matters and the development of the authorities’ internal operating models. The goal was to gain the view of an external group of researchers on which immigration matters can and should be investigated and how, and in what ways the information acquired is used,” says Project Manager Henrik Veikanmaa.

The project and the report commissioned in connection with it have been implemented with EU funding from the Asylum, Migration and Integration Fund (AMIF).

Suggestions for the whole immigration administration

The report assesses the activities of the authorities dealing with immigration matters and the legislation that guides those activities.

The report studies the authorities’ current possibilities of investigating the matters that are being resolved, and what is the duty of clients to cooperate with the processing of their case. The obligation to cooperate means that the clients are obliged to tell the authorities all information that is relevant to their application.

The report also studies how the authorities gather information, the information exchange between authorities, and the regulations on the confidentiality of documents. In practice this means, for example, the methods used to establish identity and using information gathered from open sources to make decisions on applications. Open sources refer to public information, such as news websites and social media.

The report also includes suggestions for developing the legislation. The report proposes a comprehensive reform of the legislation on foreign nationals, a review of the authorities’ roles, authorities and rights of access to information, as well as an assessment of the confidentiality provisions that apply to immigration matters.

You can study the report here: Selvittämisvelvollisuus ja tiedonhankinta ulkomaalaisasioissa (Duty of clarification and information gathering in immigration matters, in Finnish)



Project Manager Henrik Veikanmaa, Finnish Immigration Service, e-mail:, tel. +358 295 433 037

Professor Tomi Voutilainen, University of Eastern Finland, e-mail:, tel. +358 40 5956801


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The Finnish Immigration Service is a decision-making organisation in matters related to immigration, asylum, refugee status and citizenship and maintains the reception system.

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