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Residence status for British citizens

If you are a British citizen who lived in Sweden before 31 December 2020, you can stay in Sweden even though you are no longer an EU citizen.

The British government and the European Council have reached a withdrawal agreement, which means that, as a British citizen, you and your family members can continue living in Sweden after 31 December 2020. In order for you to be able to stay here, you must meet certain requirements and apply for residence status before the end of the application period.

The application period for applying for residence status extends to 30 September 2021. The most important thing for getting a quick decision in your case is a complete application.

Requi­re­ments to be able to continue living in Sweden

In order for you to be able to continue living in Sweden after the end of the transition period on 31 December 2020, you must:

  • be a British citizen, current family member of a British citizen, or former family member of a British citizen
  • have been in Sweden in accordance with European Union law before the end of the transition period
  • continue to live in Sweden after the end of the transition period and also continue to meet the requirements for the right of residence, meaning as an employee, sole proprietor, student, person with adequate funds or a family member of a person who meets these conditions
  • apply for residence status or permanent residence status before the end of the application period on 30 September 2021.

You who meet these conditions have the right to live, work and study in Sweden throughout the application period without the need for a special permit. This also applies if you are registered as a tourist by the Swedish border police when entering Sweden. If you have not yet received a decision regarding your application for residence status by 30 September 2021, the same applies until you receive a decision.

Read more about how to apply for residence status in Sweden

Read more about what applies to you as a family member of a British citizen

Special rules for fron­tier workers

If you are a British citizen who at the end of the transition period and in continuation live in another country, but work in Sweden by being employed or by having your own company, you are considered to be a frontier worker. As a frontier worker, you do not need to apply for residence status to work in Sweden, however, you have a right to receive a certificate that you are a frontier worker.

Read more about what applies to you as a frontier worker

If you live in Sweden, but work in another country, you do not count as a frontier worker, but rather as a resident of Sweden. If you want to keep the right to live in Sweden, you must apply for residence status.

If you have applied for Swedish citi­zenship, but not yet received a deci­sion

If you have applied for Swedish citizenship, but not yet received a decision, you need to legalise your presence in Sweden by applying for residence status while awaiting the decision in your citizenship case. If you meet the requirements for residence status, you have until 30 September 2021 to submit your application.

If you have a perma­nent right of resi­dence, perma­nent resi­dence card, perma­nent resi­dence permit or Swedish citi­zenship

Even if you have been granted a certificate of the permanent right of residence or a permanent residence card, you need to apply for residence status before the end of the application period.

If you have a permanent residence permit or a Swedish citizenship, you do not need to apply for residence status, but you can apply. If you have residence status, more family members than just your spouse/cohabitating partner and underaged children can apply to move to live with you. This applies, for example, to parents or children over 21 who are financially dependent on you. The same also applies to the family members who are not EU/EEA citizens and want to visit you and usually apply for a visitor visa to come to Sweden. In their case, the application is also free-of-charge in contrast to if you have a permanent residence permit in Sweden or a Swedish citizenship.

For you to be able to get residence status, it is required that you lived in Sweden with a right of residence, in conjunction with receiving the residence permit in Sweden or the Swedish citizenship, and that you also continue to fulfil the requirements for a right of residence.

If you plan on moving to Sweden on or after 1 January 2021

A requirement to receive residence status is that you were present in Sweden with support of European Union law before 31 December 2020. There are exceptions for certain family members, who can come later.

For other British citizens, the same rules apply as for other third-country nationals.

If you want to travel

British citizens do not require a visa and only need a passport or national ID card upon entry to Sweden.

Last updated: 2021-01-01

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