Concepts and definitions

Marital status

The information on marital status is derived from the Population Information System of the Population Register Centre. It should be noted that common-law marriage or cohabiting is not a marital status. People representing all marital status categories may be cohabiting, including those who are still officially married.

The current divorce regulations no longer recognise the concept of legal separation. Those persons who are legally separated on the basis of the old divorce provisions prior to 1 January 1988 and still living apart have been slotted under married persons in the statistics.

The possibility to register partnerships started in Finland on 1 March 2002 and ended on the last day of February 2017 (Act to amend the Act of Registered Partnerships 250/2016). Starting from the beginning of March 2017, same-sex couples have been able to enter into marriage (156/2015). Same-sex couples had been able to register their partnership in Finland as of 1 March 2002.

The amendment to the Marriage Act that entered into force on 1 March 2017 didn't change the classification of marital status.

For reasons of data protection, in municipal tables those living in a registered partnership are classified together with married persons, as are those divorced or widowed from a registered partnership with divorced and widowed persons.

The classification of marital status is as follows:

  • Unmarried
  • Married
  • Divorced
  • Widowed
  • Partner in a registered partnership
  • Divorced from a registered partnership
  • Widowed after a registered partnership


Citizenship refers to a person's legal nationality in a certain country. Citizenship is usually determined at birth, but it may be changed upon moving to live in another country. A person may also be a citizen of more than one country (see Nationality Act, 359/2003 and Nationality Decree, 699/1985). Persons with both Finnish and foreign citizenship will be entered in the statistics as Finnish nationals. If a foreign national living in Finland has several nationalities, that person will be entered in the register and statistics as a national of the country on whose passport he or she arrived in the country.


The information about sex has been obtained from the Population Information System.

Referencing instructions:

Official Statistics of Finland (OSF): Citizenships granted [e-publication].
ISSN=1797-7169. Helsinki: Statistics Finland [referred: 21.9.2021].
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