Automatic citizenship through birth, adoption or the parents’ marriage

Here is information on children who can automatically become Swedish citizens through birth, adoption or their parents getting married. If children do not obtain citizenship automatically, there may be a possibility to apply for or submit an application for Swedish citizenship.

A child who has not turned 12 years of age and has been adopted by a Swedish citizen automatically obtains Swedish citizenship upon adoption if

  • the child is adopted through a decision in Sweden or in another Nordic country
  • the child is adopted through a foreign adoption decision that is approved in Sweden by the Family Law and Parental Support Authority (MFoF)
  • the adoption is valid in Sweden on the basis of law.

The adoption must have been made by decision or approved after 30 June 1992.

A child who was 12 or older at the time of the adoption can become a Swedish citizen by application.

If a child is born after 1 April 2015, he or she is automatically a Swedish citizen if either of the parents is a Swedish citizen regardless of where the child is born.

A child who is born after 1 April 2015 always obtains Swedish citizenship if

  • either of the parents is a Swedish citizen at the time of the child’s birth
  • a deceased parent of the child was a Swedish citizen at the time of his or her death.

If your child is born outside Sweden

You need to contact the Swedish Tax Agency to register the child in Sweden and file a name registration.

Read more about how to file a name registration on the Swedish Tax Agency’s website External link, opens in new window.

You can apply for a passport for the child with the police during a visit in Sweden.

Read more about how to apply for a Swedish passport on the police’s website External link, opens in new window.

If you want to apply for a Swedish passport for the child abroad, contact the Swedish embassy or consulate-general.

Swedish embassies and consulates-general External link, opens in new window.

If a child is born before 1 April 2015, but after 1 July 2001, it is the parents’ citizenships that determine what citizenship their child obtains.

A child with a Swedish mother

A child of a Swedish mother always becomes a Swedish citizen. It does not matter if the child is born in Sweden or abroad.

Children with a Swedish father and a non-Swedish mother

A child of a Swedish father and a non-Swedish mother always becomes a Swedish citizen if the child is born in Sweden. If the father is married with the mother, the child obtains Swedish citizenship at birth regardless of where in the world the child is born.

A child of a non-Swedish mother, who is married to, a registered partner of or cohabitating partner of a Swedish woman

A child of a non-Swedish mother, who is married to, a registered partner of or a cohabitating partner of a Swedish woman, also becomes a Swedish citizen if the child is born in Sweden and an insemination has taken place with the Swedish woman’s consent.

Swedish citizen through the parents’ marriage

When a non-Swedish woman has a child with a Swedish man and the child is born abroad, the child does not obtain the father’s Swedish citizenship unless the parents are married to each other.

If the parents later get married with each other, the child becomes a Swedish citizen (if he or she is under 18 at the time and unmarried). It is said that the child has become a Swedish citizen through legitimation. It is the Swedish Tax Agency External link, opens in new window. that registers the child as a Swedish citizen. The child’s Swedish citizenship is then counted from the date the parents got married with each other.

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