Your Europe (SDG)

Your Europe and the Single Digital Gateway of the European Union (SDG)

The purpose of the SDG or Single Digital Gateway is to simplify the operations of international companies and make doing business convenient for citizens. To that end, an internal market network of the European Union is created to enable entrepreneurs and citizens to receive up to date and relevant information and assistance from one place. It also enables consuming the services of the network across borders and on-line on the basis of the once-only principle.

The Gender Equality and Equal Treatment Commissioner is an independent and impartial public official. The Commissioner provides advice and assistance for people who feel they have been discriminated against. Everyone who feels, that they have been discriminated against on the basis of their gender, nationality, ethnic origin, religion or other beliefs, age, disability, sexual orientation, domestic responsibilities, family-related duties, belonging to a trade union or duty to serve in defence forces can contact the Commissioner.

Moreover, the Commissioner actively advocates for equal opportunities and possibilities as well as monitors compliance with the Equal Treatment Act and the Gender Equality Act both in public and private sector.

The Commissioner is here to protect your rights and to prevent any kind of discrimination.

Free movement of workers is a fundamental principle of the Treaty enshrined in Article 45 of the Treaty on the Functioning of the European Union and developed by EU secondary legislation and the Case law of the Court of Justice. EU citizens are entitled to:

  • look for a job in another EU country   
  • work there without needing a work permit
  • reside there for that purpose
  • stay there even after employment has finished
  • enjoy equal treatment with nationals in access to employment, working conditions and all other social and tax advantages

EU nationals may also have certain types of health & social security coverage transferred to the country in which they go to seek work (see coordination of social security systems).

Free movement of workers also applies, in general terms, to the countries in the European Economic Area (Iceland, Liechtenstein and Norway).

People working in some occupations may also be able to have their professional qualifications recognised abroad (see mutual recognition of professional qualifications).

EU social security coordination provides rules to protect the rights of people moving within the EU, Iceland, Liechtenstein, Norway and Switzerland.

Who can benefit from this freedom?

  • Jobseekers, i.e. EU nationals who move to another EU country to look for a job, under certain conditions
  • EU nationals working in another EU country
  • EU nationals who return to their country of origin after having worked abroad.
  • Family members of the above.

Rights may differ somewhat for people who plan to be self-employed, students, and retired or otherwise economically non-active people. For more information on these groups, see Your Europe by topic or select by country.

What restrictions are there?

  • The rights described here apply to people who exercise their right to free movement for work purposes.
  • There are limitations based on considerations of public security, public policy, public health grounds and employment in the public sector.

Freedom of movement for workers gives nationals of EU Member States the right to freely choose their employment within the EU. They do not require a work permit. In all of the other Member States, they enjoy the same access to employment as that country’s citizens, which means that they and their family members have a right to reside there to engage in employment.

Freedom of movement for workers prohibits discrimination against EU workers on the basis of nationality (Article 45 (2) of the Treaty on the Functioning of the European Union (TFEU) and Article 7 (2) of EU Regulation 492/2011, the Free Movement of Workers Regulation).

Freedom of movement for workers in Estonia

Principal aspects of entry to and residence in Estonia for the citizens of the European Union and their family members are regulated in the Citizen of the European Union Act. According to the Act’s chapter 5 regardless of citizenship, workers who are citizens of an EU Member State or of the European Economic Area must enjoy equal treatment with the citizens of the Republic of Estonia.

Contact point

According to the Equal Treatment Act , the Commissioner acts as a contact point for cooperation between the Member States of the European Union to support the exercise of the right of free movement of workers of the EU and the Member States of the European Economic Area. This means, that the Commissioner cooperate with third parties to promote gender equality and equal treatment, including acting as a contact point for cooperation between the Member States of the EU to facilitate the exercise of the right of free movement of the workers who are citizens of a Member State of the EU and of the European Economic Area, and of their family members.


More information about working in Estonia can be found: 

the Estonian Police and Border Guard’s webpage webpage


European Union level:

European Labour Authority (ELA)

European Citizen Action Service (ECAS)

EU Rights Clinic

Employment, Social Affairs & Inclusion

Your Europe (Single Digital Gateway) by countries

Your Europe (Single Digital Gateway)  by topics