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Eurofound's EU PolicyWatch collates information on the responses of government and social partners to the COVID-19 crisis, the war in Ukraine, rising inflation, as well as gathering examples of company practices aimed at mitigating the social and economic impacts.

Factsheet for measure FI-2020-17/1646 Updated – measures in Finland

Temporary changes to the presumption of insolvency

Väliaikaiset muutokset konkurssilakiin

Country Finland , applies nationwide
Time period Temporary, 20 April 2020 – 30 September 2021
Context COVID-19
Type Legislations or other statutory regulations
Category Supporting businesses to stay afloat
– Rescue procedures in case of insolvency or adaptation of insolvency regulation
Author Amanda Kinnunen (Oxford Research) and Eurofound
Measure added 04 January 2021 (updated 10 August 2021)

Background information

Due to the rapid changes in the market caused by the COVID-19 pandemic, many Finnish companies have been unable to pay their bills and thus risked bankruptcy. In order to prevent otherwise healthy companies from filing bankruptcy, a set of temporary changes to the Bankruptcy Act (120/2004) (in Finnish ‘Konkurssilaki’) have been made. The aim of these changes has been to help companies to get through the most critical months of the pandemic.

Content of measure

In April 2020, the Parliament accepted the Government’s proposal to temporarily remove parts of section 3 of the Act. In accordance with the removed section “a debtor, who […] has not repaid the clear and due claim of the creditor within a week of the receipt of a reminder” can be deemed insolvent unless otherwise proven. This has been the most common ground for bankruptcies in Finland and its removal has made it more difficult for the creditors to file for insolvency.

This temporary provision is in force between 20 April 2020 and 31 January 2021. At first it was supposed to be in force until the end of October 2020 but the duration of the measure was extended to the end of January 2021.


The following updates to this measure have been made after it came into effect.

01 February 2021

In November 2020, the Government proposed a new temporary amendment to the Act. According to this amendment, the presumption of insolvency can be made if the debtor has not repaid the creditor within one month from the receipt of a reminder. This temporary provision entered in force on 1 February 2021, right after the above described provision ends. The duration of this extension is six months (until the end of September 2021).

Use of measure

This temporary amendment has had a clear impact on the number of bankruptcies in Finland. In comparison to 2019 (between January and November), the number of companies filing bankruptcy in Finland was 17% lower in 2020.

The number of employees in companies that have filed for bankruptcy in Finland in 2019 (between January and November 2020) was approximately 11,000 which is 11% less than the year before.

Target groups

Workers Businesses Citizens
Does not apply to workers Applies to all businesses Does not apply to citizens

Actors and funding

Actors Funding
National government
No special funding required

Social partners

Social partners' role in designing the measure and form of involvement:

Trade unions Employers' organisations
Role No involvement as case not in social partner domain No involvement as case not in social partner domain
Form Not applicable Not applicable

Social partners' role in the implementation, monitoring and assessment phase:

  • No involvement
  • Main level of involvement: N/A


The peak-level social partners have not been involved in the design or implementation of this measure. The Federation of Finnish Enterprises (in Finnish 'Suomen Yrittäjät') and other key stakeholders have been consulted.

Views and reactions

The Federation of Finnish Enterprises welcomed this measure and also argued for its extension in September 2020. The organisation argues that this temporary measure helps Finnish enterprises to get through the worst months of the crisis.


  • 16 April 2020: Government proposal 46/2020 (Hallituksen esitys 46/2020) (
  • 18 September 2020: It is hoped that the temporary bankruptcy and foreclosure clause will have an extension of six months from the end of October - The crisis is not over (Väliaikaisen konkurssi- ja ulosottopykälän toivotaan saavan jatkoaikaa lokakuun lopusta kuusi kuukautta – Koronakriisi ei ole ohi) (
  • 15 October 2020: Government proposal 164/2020 (Hallituksen esitys 164/2020) (
  • 16 December 2020: The number of bankruptcies has clearly decreased from last year as a result of the temporary amendment (Lakimuutos puree: konkurssien määrä vähentynyt selvästi viime vuodesta) (


Eurofound (2021), Temporary changes to the presumption of insolvency, measure FI-2020-17/1646 (measures in Finland), EU PolicyWatch, Dublin,


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Disclaimer: This information has not been subject to the full Eurofound evaluation, editorial and publication process.