Long-term resident status in Sweden

If you are a citizen of a country outside of the EU and have lived continuously in Sweden for five years, you may be granted long-term resident status in Sweden. Having this status means that you have certain rights which an EU citizen has and that you are more likely to be able to work, study or start your own business in another EU country.

Requirements for long-term resident status

To be granted long-term resident status, you must

  • have lived continuously in Sweden for five years
  • have had a residence permit, or legal residence in Sweden on other grounds, for the previous five years.
  • be able to support yourself and your family.

If you are a refugee and have subsidiary protection status, you can count the time from the day when you submitted your application for asylum or application for new examination.

If you have had a Swedish residence permit for, for example, studies that are not at a doctoral level or for a visit, you cannot count this period of time. That is because this type of permit is granted for a limited time, not to those who wish to live in Sweden. However, for example, a residence permit period for work, research and doctoral studies, or a stay in Sweden with a right of residence may be included.

Those who have been granted a Swedish residence permit as persons otherwise in need of protection cannot be granted long-term resident status.

How to apply

You fill in the form Ansökan om ställning som varaktigt bosatt, 138011 (in Swedish only), and send it to the Swedish Migration Agency. Note that everyone, including an accompanying husband/wife/cohabiting partner or children, must submit their own application. Each person who applies for long-term resident status in Sweden is examined individually.

Postal addresses to the Migration Agency's Permit Units

Ansökan om ställning som varaktigt bosatt, form 138011 (in Swedish only)PDF

You should enclose

  • copies of your passport showing your personal details, signature, period of validity and whether you have permission to live in countries other than your country of origin (read more about what the copies must show)
  • documents which show how you have supported yourself and your family over the previous five years. This can be shown, for example, with certificates of employment, statements of your declared income, certificates showing your pension or evidence of the assets you have in the bank.
  • documents showing your accommodation costs, for example, rental contracts, purchase contracts and statements showing your monthly accommodation costs.

If you are granted long-term resident status, you will receive a residence permit card. The card is proof that you have the status of a long-term resident in Sweden and contains, amongst other things, a photograph of you and your fingerprints. You should, therefore, visit the Swedish Migration Agency to be photographed and fingerprinted as soon as possible. You need to do this, even if you have previously had a residence permit card. This is because the Swedish Migration Agency does not save your photograph or fingerprints. Before visiting the Swedish Migration Agency, you will need to make an appointment.

If you do not already have a permanent residence permit when you are granted long-term resident status in Sweden, you will also be given a decision on permanent residence permit. You do not need to submit a separate application for a permanent residence permit when you apply for long-term resident status. If you are granted both long-term resident status and a permanent residence permit, you will be given two cards: a residence permit card and an EU residence permit card for long-term residents.

Read more about residence permit card

Book an appointment before you visit us

The decision will be sent to your address in Sweden. When the residence permit card is ready, it will be sent to your home within about a week.

If you are planning to move to another EU country, it is important that you check which rules apply in that country. This may be done by, for example, contacting that country's embassy or their equivalent of the Swedish Migration Agency.

Your permanent residence permit is valid for as long as you are resident in Sweden. Please note that you may lose your long-term resident status in Sweden if you are away from the country for six years.

If you are not granted long-term resident status you may appeal the decision within three weeks from the date you receive it.

Countries which are covered by the directive on resi­dence permits for long-term resi­dents

Austria, Belgium, Bulgaria, Croatia, Cyprus, Czech Republic, Estonia, Finland, France, Germany, Greece, Hungary, Italy, Latvia, Lithuania, Luxembourg, Malta, Netherlands, Poland, Portugal, Romania, Slovakia, Slovenia, Spain and Sweden.

Please note that the EU countries Denmark and Ireland are not covered by the regulations governing long-term resident status; therefore, you do not have the right to be granted residence permits in these countries simply because you are a long-term resident of Sweden.

Last updated: 2021-09-22