Residence permit in accordance with Swedish rules for family members of Nordic citizens
If you are a Nordic citizen, your family are citizens of a non-EU country and you intend to live in Sweden, they should apply for residence permits. The main rule is that you must apply for and obtain a residence permit before entering Sweden.
Your family must in most cases have their residence permits granted before travelling to Sweden. Some family members, however, have the right to apply from Sweden.
Which members of your family can apply for a residence permit from Sweden?
Family members that can apply from Sweden are
- your partner (cohabiting partner, spouse or registered partner)
- your or your partner's unmarried children under 21 years of age
- your or your partner's children over 21 years of age if they are dependent on you for financial support
- your or your partner's parents who are financially dependent on you.
If you are planning to marry or cohabit with someone in Sweden
If you have not lived together outside of Sweden the residence permit must be granted before your family member travels to Sweden. He or she must not be in Sweden when the Migration Agency considers the application.
Other close relatives
In exceptional cases, another close relatives with whom you have lived in your country of origin may obtain a residence permit based on family ties to you. The residence permit must be granted before your family member travels to Sweden.
You must be able to prove that you were living together just before you moved to Sweden and that you were socially and emotionally dependent on each other such that it is difficult for you to live apart.
The application must be submitted as soon as possible after your move to Sweden. It is normally not possible to obtain a residence permit if your family member applies long after you moved to Sweden, or if you become dependent on each other after the move.
If your family needs visas
If your family need visas they should submit visa applications to a Swedish embassy or consulate-general in the country where they live. Close relatives of an EU citizen do not need to pay any fees when applying for a visa to accompany the EU citizen to an EU country.
Each family member who is not an EU citizen, including children, must submit their own application. The form used is entitled Application for Schengen Visa, number 119031. For information about which rules apply at the embassy or consulate-general concerned, please visit Swedenabroad.com.
Immediate right to work and study
If you have right of residence by working, studying, being self-employed or living on your pension or other sufficient means for supporting your family, your family has the right to start working or studying immediately after coming to Sweden. They do not need to wait until they applied for or have been granted a residence permit.
How your family should apply
Your family can apply online. In the application, your partner fills out information about himself or herself and about you, the person already living in Sweden. If your partner has children under the age of 18 who have also come or will come to Sweden, you can apply for residence permits for them at the same time.
As an EU citizen, neither you nor your family members need to pay a fee to apply for residence permits. A Nordic citizen is considered an EU citizen in this case.
Your family should enclose
- copies of the pages in their passports which show their personal information, photograph, signature, passport number, passport issuing country, the period of the passport's validity and whether they have permission to live in countries other than their country of origin
- if you are married, a copy of your marriage certificate or corresponding document
- if you are cohabiting partners, a certificate of population registration, lease contract or proof of purchase for your residence, or other documents that show that you have a shared residence
- for children, a copy of their birth certificate including the parents' names
- approval from the other guardian, if they are not accompanying you to Sweden. Applies to children under 18 years of age.
Make sure that your family members extend their passports if they are about to expire – they cannot obtain a permit for longer than their passports' period of validity.
Shorter processing times for complete applications
For the Swedish Migration Agency to make a decision about your application, all the details need to be filled in and all necessary documents attached. This means that the processing time will be shorter if all the necessary information is included from the start than if information is added afterwards.
Note that the Migration Agency may in some cases need to further examine your application even if you have included all the required information and documents.
When we have received the application
Persons granted a residence permit for more than three months will receive a residence permit card. The card is proof that your family is permitted to be in Sweden and includes things such as a photo and fingerprints. Your family member should therefore visit the Swedish Migration Agency to be photographed and have their fingerprints recorded as soon as possible. This should be done even if the family member has previously had a residence permit card as the information is not saved. They must first make an appointment.
After the decision has been made
The decision card is sent to your address in Sweden. When the residence permit card is ready, it will be sent to you approximately within one week.
If you have previously lived together in your country of origin for a period of at least two years, your family member will generally be granted a permanent residence permit. If you have not previously lived together your family member will generally be granted a residence permit for two years. If you intend to continue living together in Sweden after the permit has expired, your family member should apply for an extension of their residence permit. Children who apply along with a parent are usually granted the same residence permit as their parent.
The residence permit can be withdrawn
Your family member´s residence permit can be withdrawn if he or she leaves Sweden. If your family member notifies the Swedish Migration Agency that he or she wishes to retain the permanent residence permit, it is possible to remain abroad for up to two years without the permit being affected. If your family member has not returned to Sweden after two years the Migration Agency may withdraw the residence permit.
The residence permit can also be withdrawn if your family member gave a false identity when applying for the residence permit, or if he or she knowingly lied or failed to mention something that was significant for the residence permit.
If your relationship ends
If your relationship ends while your family member has a temporary residence permit, he or she can only extend the permit in special cases. The Swedish Migration Agency may also recall the residence permit. In each individual case we determine if there are grounds for approving a continued residence permit.
If your relationship ends while your family member have a temporary residence permit, he or she should personally submit a new application to the Migration Agency and state their reasons for staying in Sweden.
Important information about insurance
Your family members need to have an insurance policy that will cover any costs that may arise in connection with illness or injury when they are living in Sweden. If they are registered in the Swedish population register they are covered by the Swedish social insurance system. If they are not registered in the population register it is important that they get their own health insurance policy.
To be registered in the Swedish population register you generally need to have been granted a residence permit in Sweden for at least one year and plan to stay here for a year or longer.
If the Swedish Migration Agency refuses your application
If the Swedish Migration Agency refuses your family's application, they may appeal the decision within three weeks of the day they received it. Information on how to do this can be found in the decision.
Power of attorney
A member of your family can give you a power of attorney at any time during the application process. A power of attorney can be a signed letter stating that the person applying for a permit is authorising another person to represent him or her. A power of attorney can, for example, give somebody the right to make an application, see the reasons for a decision or to appeal a decision on behalf of another person. The power of attorney must be signed by the person who is authorising another person. The original must be able to be shown upon request from the Swedish Migration Agency.
To be counted as a power of attorney, it needs to show
- that it is a power of attorney
- the name, date of birth and address of the person who is authorising another person
- what the authorised person has the right to do
- the name, personal identity number and address of the authorised person
- the signature of the person who is authorising another person.
If your family cannot apply online
If your family are not able to apply online, each family member, including children, should submit an individual application. Use the form Residence permit to settle in Sweden, number 161011. If the application is for a child under 18 years of age, the form Residence permit to settle in Sweden – for a child under the age of 18, number 163011, should be used. Send the application to The Swedish Migration Agency, Box 3100, 903 03 Umeå.
On the application form there is a list of all the documents you need to enclose.
Applications for residence permits can also be submitted to a Swedish embassy or consulate-general in the country where your family lives.