Apply for a resi­dence permit – if you are the parent of an unac­com­pa­nied child in Sweden

If you are a citizen of a country outside the EU and want to move to be with your child who has come to Sweden as an unaccompanied child, you need to apply for a residence permit. If your spouse, partner or child also wants to move to the unaccompanied child in Sweden, they must submit their application together with you. In order for you to be able to obtain a residence permit, it is usually required that the child in Sweden has received a residence permit due to asylum reasons.

Requi­re­ments for resi­dence permit

In order for the Swedish Migration Agency to be able to test whether you as a parent have the right to move to Sweden, the child who lives in Sweden must

  • be unmarried and under 18 years of age, or
  • be over 18 years of age, but under 18 years of age when the application for asylum was submitted. In this case, you must submit your application within three months after your child has been granted a residence permit as a refugee or alternatively in need of protection
  • have come to Sweden without parents or another guardian or been left alone after arriving in Sweden
  • be a refugee or eligible for subsidiary protection
  • not have become a Swedish citizen.

If the child does not have grounds for asylum in Sweden, but has been granted a residence permit for particularly distressing circumstances, you as a parent can only in exceptional cases obtain a residence permit to move to your child.

Requi­re­ments for using the e-service

In order to use the e-service, you need to

  • have a valid email address
  • be able to pay the application fee with Visa or Mastercard
  • have photographed or scanned copies of documents showing that you have a permit to live in countries other than your home country
  • have power of attorney, if you have a representative applying for you.

It is also good if you can enclose photographed or scanned copies of

  • the pages in your passport that show personal information, period of validity, country of issue, signature (if your passport is about to expire, you should extend it because you can not obtain a permit for longer than your passport is valid)
  • birth certificate or other documents that show that you are the parent of the child in Sweden
  • documents showing whether you are married, divorced or widowed
  • court decision or access agreement that shows that you have access to the child in Sweden (only needed if you are not planning to live with the child in Sweden).

If other members of the family are to submit their application with you, you must enclose additional documents. See the heading If other family members are planning to apply with you.

All documents that you include must be translated into Swedish or English by an authorised translator. A copy of the original document must always be included.

Make sure that the information on the documents you include is clearly visible. Numbers and characters on the top and bottom of the passport pages must also be clearly visible on the passport copies.

If your spouse, partner or child is planning to move to Sweden with you, you can submit your application in the e-service together. Your family members must then enclose additional documents to your application.

Spouse or partner

If your spouse or partner is planning to apply with you, you must enclose digital copies of:

  • Marriage certificate, if you are married. If you are not married but live or have lived together, you must enclose digital copies of documents showing that you live or have lived together.
  • Power of attorney from your spouse or partner. If you have a representative who applies for you, you must instead enclose a power of attorney for the representative.
  • Documents showing that your spouse or partner has a permit to live in countries other than their home country.

It is also good if you can enclose

  • digital copies of the pages in your spouse's or partners' passport that show personal information, period of validity, country of issue, signature.

Children

If your child, your joint child or your spouse or partner's children are planning to apply with you, you must enclose digital copies of:

  • Birth records or a birth certificate which states the parents’ names.
  • Consent from the other guardian that the child may move to Sweden, if the other guardian is not moving to Sweden with you.
  • A court decision if you have sole custody or death certificate if the child's other parent is deceased.
  • Adoption documents if the child is adopted
  • Document showing that the child has a permit to live in countries other than his or her home country.

It is also good if you can enclose

  • digital copies of the child's passport showing personal information, photo, possible signature, passport number, country of issue and period of validity.

Consent that the child may move with you to Sweden

If the child has two guardians, but only one is moving with the child to Sweden, you must enclose a consent in your application. You must also enclose a digital copy of a passport or another identity document for the guardian who has signed the consent. The consent can be given on a form:

Consent for a child to settle in Sweden, form 217011 Pdf, 618.6 kB, opens in new window.

Consent can also be given as a signed letter from the guardian who is not accompanying the child to Sweden.

The consent letter should include

  • name, date of birth, and address of the parent giving their consent
  • name and date of birth of the child that the consent applies to
  • that the parent approves that the child moves to Sweden
  • that the parent/guardian gives their consent to the child being granted a residence permit to settle in Sweden
  • signature of the parent giving their consent and their name in block letters.

In most cases you pay a fee in connection with the application. You pay the fee with a credit card or debit card. Depending on what information you fill out about yourself and your family member, the application knows whether you need to pay or not.

Fees for residence permit

Book an appointment for an interview at the embassy or consulate-general

The child in Sweden that you are moving to will need to answer questions from the Swedish Migration Agency together with the person who has been appointed as the representative of the child in Sweden. When the Swedish Migration Agency has reviewed your application and the information from the child in Sweden, you will receive an email asking you to book an appointment for an interview at the embassy or consulate-general.

On the website Sweden abroad you can read more about and find contact information for the embassy or consulate-general that you are going to visit.

Sweden abroad External link, opens in new window.

Visit the embassy or consulate-general

Bring your passport and the originals of the documents you sent in with your application. Children, spouses or partners who apply with you must also accompany you to the visit. During the interview, you will be able to answer questions about your relationship with the person in Sweden.

If you need a residence permit card, you will also be asked to provide fingerprints and take a photo for your residence permit card.

To apply, fill in the form Application for residence permit to settle in Sweden, 161011, and submit it to a Swedish embassy or consulate-general in the country that you live in. The application form states which documents you must enclose copies of.

Application for residence permit to settle in Sweden, form 161011 Pdf, 3.8 MB, opens in new window.

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

If it is not possible to apply in your country, you must apply at the embassy or consulate-general that is closest to the country where you live. Contact the embassy or consulate-general before submitting your application for more information.

In most cases you need to pay a fee.

You pay the fee when you submit your application at the embassy or consulate-general. For information regarding the fee, contact the embassy in question or the consulate as they do not follow the same fee regulations as the Swedish Migration Agency.

Fees for residence permit

Once the decision is completed, you will receive an email. You must contact the embassy or consulate-general to receive the decision and possibly book an appointment to collect it. When you collect your decision, you must have your passport with you. Some embassies and consulates-general send out the decision and the permit card by post. Contact the embassy or consulate-general for more information.

If you have given somebody a power of attorney to represent you, the decision will be sent to that person. He or she will let you know what is in the decision.

If the Swedish Migration Agency rejects your application

If the Swedish Migration Agency rejects your application, you can appeal the decision within three weeks after the date on which you received the decision. Information on how to appeal is provided in your decision.

If the Swedish Migration Agency approves your application

If you are granted a residence permit, you will receive a residence permit card. The card contains your fingerprints and a photograph of you, among other information. The fingerprints and photo are only stored on the card’s chip.

If you need an entry visa to travel to Sweden, you need the residence permit card when you travel to Sweden. You will therefore will be photographed and asked to provide your fingerprints in connection with the visit to the embassy or consulate-general.

When the residence permit card is ready, the embassy or consulate-general will hand over or send the finished card to you. Keep in mind that it can take up to four weeks to manufacture and deliver the card to the embassy or consulate-general after you have received your decision. When you travel into Sweden, you must present your residence permit card together with a valid passport.

If you can travel to Sweden without an entry visa, you must be able to present a copy of the decision when you enter the country. As soon as you have arrived in Sweden, you must book an appointment at the Swedish Migration Agency to provide fingerprints and be photographed. When the residence permit card is ready, it will be sent to your address in Sweden.

Read more about residence permit cards

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

Book an appointment at the Swedish Migration Agency to provide fingerprints and be photographed if you can travel to Sweden without a visa

The Swedish Institute's website about Sweden External link, opens in new window.

Information for persons arriving in Sweden with a residence permit

Do not forget to save your residence permit decision. It will be useful when contacting various national authorities and organisations.

To register as living in Sweden and obtain a Swedish personal identity number, contact the Swedish Tax Agency, Skatteverket. External link, opens in new window.

To be registered in the social insurance system, contact the Swedish Social Insurance Agency, Försäkringskassan. External link, opens in new window.

Some municipalities have municipal housing agencies where you can look for accommodation. The municipality can also give you advice on private landlords.

The municipality in which you live will offer child care and schooling for children.

For questions about health care, contact the region where you live. Find healthcare in the whole of the country on 1177 Healthcare Service Guide. External link, opens in new window.

For questions about learning Swedish for Immigrants (SFI), contact the municipality you live in. See also the website of the Swedish Association of Local Authorities and Regions. External link, opens in new window.

If you are looking for a job you can register with the Swedish Public Employment Service, Arbetsförmedlingen. External link, opens in new window.

The Swedish Pensions Agency External link, opens in new window. has information in Swedish about income support for the elderly for those who come to Sweden late in life and have a low or no pension.

For information about studying at colleges or universities, see Universityadmissions.se External link, opens in new window. or studera.nu. External link, opens in new window.

For questions about student loans and grants, contact CSN. External link, opens in new window.

For questions concerning driving licenses, visit the Swedish Transport Agency. External link, opens in new window.

For questions about the right to vote, contact the Election Authority, Valmyndigheten. External link, opens in new window.

Information from the Swedish National Agency for Education about the Swedish education system can be found at Skolverket. External link, opens in new window.

Information about society in Sweden can be found in a number of languages at informationsverige.se. External link, opens in new window.

For more information on society in Sweden visit the website of the Swedish Institute. External link, opens in new window.

Hej hej Sverige! External link, opens in new window. has simple and inspiring films about how Sweden works.

On the page Learn Swedish on www.informationsverige.se, External link, opens in new window. you will find links to several programmes for learning Swedish on your own.

The information service at the Swedish Consumer Agency External link, opens in new window. can answer your questions about buying goods and services and about contract terms and conditions.

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