Right to Vote and Compilation of the Voting Register
Entitled to vote in municipal elections are
1) citizens of Finland or another Member State of the European Union as well as of Iceland and Norway who have reached the age of 18 not later than on the day of the election, and whose municipality of residence, as defined by law, is the municipality in question on 26 February 2021 (on the 51st day before election day),
2) other foreigners who have reached the age of 18 not later than on the day of the election, and whose municipality of residence, as defined by law, is the municipality in question on 26 February 2021 (on the 51st day before election day), and who at that time have had a municipality of residence in Finland for an uninterrupted period of two years and
3) those who are employed by the European Union or an international organisation based in Finland and who are habitually resident in the municipality in question on 26 February 2021 (on the 51st day before the election day), provided that their personal information has, at their request, been entered into the Population Information System and that they have submitted a written notification to the Digital and Population Data Services Agency, no later than 25 February 2021 (on the 52nd day before the election day), stating that they wish to exercise their right to vote in the municipal elections.
The Digital and Population Data Services Agency will compile an electronic register of eligible voters (voting register) by 3 March 2021 (46th day before election day). The information that is contained in the Population Information System on 26 February 2021 (51st day before election day) concerning eligible voters – name, personal identity code, municipality of residence, and election day polling station, for example – will be entered in the voting register.
The voting register will be publicly displayed at the Digital and Population Data Services Agency starting on 8 March 2021 (41st day before election day). In addition, every eligible voter included in the voting register will be sent a notice of his or her right to vote (polling card) by 25 March 2021, 24 days before election day at the latest. The card indicates the date of the election, the period for advance voting, the address of the voter’s election day polling station, and contact information of the election authorities, among other things. Electoral rolls, to be used in the election day polling stations, will be printed out from the voting register later.
A person who considers that he or she has been unlawfully left out of the voting register or that the information included in the register is incorrect may request an administrative review concerning the voting register. A request for an administrative review may be submitted using the form drawn up in accordance with the model confirmed by decision of the Ministry of Justice (802/1998). Requests for an administrative review concerning the voting register must be submitted to the Digital and Population Data Services Agency on the 16th day before election day at the latest. In 2021, this day is Tuesday 6 April, due to Easter.
The Digital and Population Data Services Agency will make decisions on the requests for an administrative review by 6 April 2021. A person who is dissatisfied with the decision of the Digital and Population Data Services Agency may request a judicial review of it, by appeal, at a regional administrative court within seven days from the service of the decision. The decision of the administrative court is not subject to appeal. An appeal to the Supreme Administrative Court is, however, possible through the so-called means of extraordinary appeal, in other words by filing a complaint or an application for the annulment of the administrative decision or for the restoration of lapsed time. However, these means are used extremely rarely.
The voting register will become legally valid on 6 April 2021 (12th day before election day). The legally valid voting register must be adhered to without alterations, meaning that no one can neither be erased from nor added to the register and the information included in the register cannot be changed after this deadline. The only exceptions to this are cases where an administrative court or the Supreme Administrative Court issues its decision on appeal only after the register has already become legally valid. In such a case, a person who has been added to the voting register by decision of the administrative court may vote in the elections, but he or she must take the decision to the polling station and present it to the election authorities.