I’m from an EU country and my stay will be more than 3 months
- Secure a job in Estonia. Agree on work conditions with your employer and sign a contract. Read all about employment contracts here.
- Apply for an Estonian ID code.You need to apply for an Estonian personal identification code within 5 days of starting work, so your employer can register you at the Employment Register. Read more in the Personal ID Code section. Get your ID code at your local government service office or at International House of Estonia.
- Register your address in Estonia at your local government service office or at International House of Estonia. After registering your address, you can start using public and social services provided by the State. Read more in the Registering Your Place of Residence section.
NB! If the property has multiple owners, you’ll need consent from all of them.
- Get an ID card. Apply for an Estonian ID card at the Police and Border Guard Board once you have registered your place of residence. The ID card will be the document stating your right of residence. Read more in the Estonian ID Card section.
- Health care for your family. The Estonian health care system will cover your family members if they are eligible (e.g. children). An additional form might be necessary. More about Estonian national health insurance here. There are many private insurance providers like Ergo, Minudoc.
- Find and register with a general doctor. To have access to quality primary health care, submit a registration application for each family member to the specific clinic in your residence area where you want to register. Once you’ve applied, you’ll get a confirmation if you are accepted. Read more about Estonian health care system here.
The change becomes effective on the first day of the month following the month of submitting the application.
- Change your tax residency status. When your stay in Estonia exceeds 183 days or when you register your address in Estonia, you become a tax resident here. The change does not happen automatically, meaning you have to inform the tax authorities by submitting Form R.What changes:
Your tax residency will change retroactively from the day you arrive and the change will be reflected in your annual tax declaration. You’ll be able to use the same deductions as other residents and from 2021 you can choose whether you’d like to join the pension system (2% of your gross salary each month). Read more about the pension scheme here.
We hope you don’t, but if you decide to leave Estonia, don’t forget to notify the Tax Board of your change of residency by submitting another Form R.
- Participate in the Settle in programme that covers all the needed areas of your settle in process. You can join the course after obtaining your ID card.
- Re-Invent Yourself program is available if your partner/spouse is also interested in working in Estonia. Read more about the program from here. The spouse can also participate at our Career counseling service, which is free of charge. Register in our ISCC section.
Additional information that might interest you:
– You will have health care coverage from your 15th day of employment. Once you’re registered at the Employment Registry and have an Estonian ID-code, the Estonian health care system will cover you from your 15th day of employment.
– Find a home. We recommend you start looking for an apartment as soon as you arrive in Estonia. You could even start a week before (no point in starting too early—the rental market is pretty busy and most apartments will be gone within a week). The best websites for property search are ee and KV.ee. Read more about renting in the Housing section in the Relocation Guide.
– Find out how digital signing works here.
– Open a bank account. Read more about your options here.
– Apply for social benefits. You or your family members are entitled to social benefits (such as child support) from the Social Insurance Board. Family benefits overview here. Unemployment benefits here.
– Enroll your kids at school. Read more about the education system: Pre-school and basic education, Availability of international general education. Read more about preschools in Estonia here. The registration system EHIS (in Estonian) is here. The search is available in Estonian only, but here are some tips for using it:
Õppekeel – language of study;
Õppeasutuse liik – type of institution;
Koolieelne lasteasutus – preschool;
Asukoht – location. Use this to choose your county and local government unit.
After clicking Otsi (search), you will see a list of kindergartens. Click on the small book symbol in front of the kindergarten name to see additional information and the kindergarten’s website.
Tallinn has a separate search engine (also only in Estonian) that shows you whether there are any vacancies in a specific kindergarten.
– Get a public transportation card. More info here.
– Local cell phone contract (if needed, prepaid is quite convenient in Estonia as well). Service providers: Telia , Elisa, Tele2
– Register your car. You have to register your car within 5 working days of your arrival, or as soon as you get your right of residence in Estonia. Read more here.
– Get a local driver’s license (if needed). Check which rules apply to your driving licence on the Road Administration website.
– Declare customs. You don’t have to declare your possessions when coming from another EU country. If you’re coming from Switzerland, Norway, Iceland, Lichtenstein or another non-EU country, you will need to declare any personal items and motor vehicles you want to bring to Estonia. The authority dealing with customs is the Estonian Tax and Customs Board. You can apply for a tax exemption as an immigrant – that will allow you to bring household goods and personal vehicles relieved from customs duty (and VAT that may otherwise be due). Customs clearance of personal property info here.
Feels like a lot to handle? The International House of Estonia is there to support you and answer all your questions about paperwork, settling in, networking, and jobs. Book an appointment.