New service gives property owners control over who registered at an address

Apartment building
Apartment building Source: Anna Aurelia Minev/ERR

A new electronic service will allow property owners to view and veto residents staying in the premises they own.

"As a new service, owners of the premises have been added to the e-population register so they can see who lives in their properties," Enel Pungas from the interior ministry's population operations department told Vikerraadio Tuesday morning.

"Until now, the municipality had to be asked that question."

If individuals registered at an address do not in fact live there, the owner can delete them from that address.

"Not only can, but actually must," Pungas added. 

"It affects these people too, that their data is in order."

Registering at an address fraudulently can be used, for example, to vote in a district where the individual does not in fact live, or to obtain local municipal services.

In Tallinn, this would include free public transport, which is only permitted to the capital's residents.

Sometimes data can simply be out-of-date.

Coronavirus cases are also linked to addresses in the population register, so this information can also be inaccurate if the register is not correct.

At the same time, Vikerraadio reported, tens of thousands of people in Estonia have no listed residence.

One issue comes with landlord and tenant, where the former often don't want the latter registered at the address they are renting.

Those with two addresses must choose which one they will be registered at. During the peak of the COVID-19 pandemic in spring, those with second homes on Estonia's western islands could not travel to their properties, as restrictions meant only island residents could visit the islands.

The population registry's English site is here.


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Editor: Andrew Whyte

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