At the initiative of an authority, the initial assessment is always conducted on:
- an immigrant who is an unemployed jobseeker
- an immigrant who receives social assistance on a non-temporary basis
The starting point of the Integration Act is to guide not only unemployed jobseekers and persons receiving social assistance but also other immigrants to services and measures that promote integration. For example, the ground for granting a residence permit or the validity period of the permit should not limit the possibility for initial assessment.
The need to conduct an initial assessment is important especially for the following groups of immigrants:
- persons who have entered Finland as spouses and who are not customers of TE Services
- parents caring for a child at home
- young people who have come to Finland at the age of compulsory education
- persons in a vulnerable position
- persons who have come to Finland as students or employees.
The immigrant can request an initial assessment themselves. The official who receives the request assesses the need for the initial assessment and defines which authority’s/authorities’ service/services the immigrant should be directed to.
On the basis of the information from the initial assessment, the immigrant can be directed to suitable services (for example, municipal basic services, TE Services, activities organised by the third sector in the residential area). This way it is possible to promote the customer's integration even if it is considered that an individual integration plan is not necessary for the person.
However, a decision may be made not to conduct the initial assessment if it is considered clearly unnecessary. This is the case when the immigrant has already resided in the country for a long time and is not considered to benefit from the initial assessment.