Amended rules for family reunification
The Swedish Parliament has decided on new rules for people who apply for a residence permit to move to Sweden to reunite with their family or another close relative. The new rules will apply from 1 December.
The new rules deal partly with age and partly with the maintenance requirement. Family reunification means moving to a relative in Sweden who is a Swedish citizen, has a permanent residence permit or has another of the permits listed at the top of the page For the relative in Sweden (linked below).
The age limit will be raised from 18 to 21 years
In order for the Swedish Migration Agency to be able to grant a residence permit to a person who is applying to move to Sweden to reunite with their spouse or cohabiting partner, both the person already living in Sweden and the person applying for a residence permit must be at least 21 years old. Previously, they had to be at least 18 years old.
Amendment to exemption from the maintenance requirement
People living in Sweden need to meet certain requirements with regard to maintenance and accommodation in order for the Swedish Migration Agency to be able to grant a residence permit to a close relative who wants to move here to reunite with them. There is currently an exemption for people who have been granted a residence permit on the grounds that they are in need of subsidiary protection.
The exemption means that if the application is submitted within three months of the date on which the person in Sweden receives their residence permit, they do not need to meet the accommodation and maintenance requirements in order for their family or another close relative to be granted a residence permit.
The new rules eliminate this exemption. This means that the maintenance requirement will also apply to people with subsidiary protection status.
However, the exemption from the maintenance requirement still applies people with refugee status, as long as they apply within three months.
From 1 December, the new rules apply to all decisions
The change in the law will enter into force on 1 December 2023. This means that the new rules will apply to all decisions made by the Swedish Migration Agency from 1 December onwards. If you have an ongoing case with the Swedish Migration Agency, you will receive a decision based on the new rules. This applies even if you submitted your application before the Parliament decided to make the changes.
The information here on the Swedish Migration Agency’s website will be updated with the new rules on 1 December.