How to apply for a work permit
The main rule is that you should apply for and have been granted a work permit before entering Sweden. When applying online you are given clear instructions about how to fill in your application and what you should send with the application. This makes it easier for you to apply correctly and increases your chances of a quick decision.
Information for holders of work permits who wish to apply for an extension or a permanent residence permit
When you apply for an extension of your work permit, the Migration Agency checks that the conditions for a work permit have been met during the periods of validity of each of your previous work permit periods. For applications to be complete, you need to submit documents that show that salary and insurance requirements have been met for each month you have held a work permit in Sweden.
Sometimes other rules apply
Special rules regarding work permit applications exist for certain occupations and countries. Other rules also apply to those who have been asylum seekers and are now applying for a work permit, or to persons visiting an employer in Sweden.
Application for work permit for certain occupations and countries
Application for work permit for persons who have been asylum seekers
Application for work permit for persons visiting an employer in Sweden
To obtain a work permit, you must have an employment in Sweden. You must have an employment contract that you must enclose with your application. Your employer must have advertised the job in Sweden and the EU/EEA and Switzerland for at least ten days before the employment contract was entered into.
Read more about how your employer must have advertised your new job
The employer initiates the application
Your employer in Sweden initiates the work permit application by providing information about the employment. Your employer needs information about your name, date of birth, citizenship, education and your email address.
It is important that you have access to the email address you give your employer until you have received a decision regarding your application. The Swedish Migration Agency will use this email address to communicate with you throughout the application period.
You receive an email
When your employer has provided information about the employment you will receive an email with information about how to apply for a work permit.
In the application you provide information about yourself. You should also check that the information about your employment terms in the provided information about the employment corresponds with what you and your employer have agreed on.
If your family is coming with you to Sweden you apply for permits for them at the same time. You are subject to a maintenance requirement if your family is coming with you to Sweden.
The following documents are to be scanned or photographed and sent with your application
- your employment contract
- copies of the pages in your passport which show your personal information, photograph, signature, passport number, passport issuing country, the passport's period of validity, bar code on the identification page and whether you have permission to live in countries other than your country of origin
- a power of attorney in the event you are representing the applicant.
If your passport is about to expire, you should extend it because you are not able to get a permit for longer than your passport is valid.
If you are applying for an extension of work permit, you will need to attach additional documents to your application.
Read more about extending your work permit
Employment as a personal assistant
If you are applying for a work permit as a personal assistant you must attach a copy of the decision issued by the Swedish Social Insurance Agency (Försäkringskassan) regarding assistance benefits. This decision shows that you have somebody that you will be working with and that this person is entitled to an assistance benefit.
What is a power of attorney?
A power of attorney can be a signed letter in which the person applying for a permit allows another person to represent him or her. A power of attorney can, for example, give someone the right to apply, be informed of the reasons for a decision, or lodge an appeal for someone else. The power of attorney must be signed by the person who gives their power of attorney to another person, and must be presented in the original if required by the Swedish Migration Agency.
In order to give another person power of attorney, you will need to send a letter to the Swedish Migration Agency stating
- that it is a power of attorney
- the name, date of birth and address of the person giving someone else the power of attorney
- what the person who has the power of attorney has to do
- the name, personal identity number and address of the person who is given the power of attorney
- the signature of the person giving someone else the power of attorney
- the date and place where the power of attorney is signed.
Power of Attorney, form 107011 Pdf, 739.4 kB, opens in new window.
If your family will accompany you and you are applying for them at the same time, you will also be required to submit the following:
- 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, bar code on the identification page and whether they have permission to live in countries other than their country of origin.
- copies of marriage certificates or the equivalent (applies to married couples or registered partners)
- documents showing that you have lived together in your country of origin (applies to cohabiting partners)
- birth certificates for children
- consent from the other custodial parent, if they are not also coming to Sweden, stating that the child is allowed to move to Sweden
- documents showing that children above the age of 21 are financially dependent on their parents
- adoption documents if the child was adopted
- power of attorney if you are representing all members of the family who are over 18 years and who are co-applicants.
The above-mentioned documents should be translated into Swedish or English by an authorized translator. You should always submit both a copy of the original document a copy of the translation.
A statement of consent is a signed letter from the parent who has custody but will not be accompanying the child to Sweden, in which he or she agrees that your child should be granted a residence permit to settle in Sweden. The statement of consent should contain
- the name, date of birth and address of the parent who consents
- the name and date of birth of the child to which the statement of consent relates
- a statement that the parent agrees that the child should be granted a residence permit to settle in Sweden
- the signature of the parent consenting, along with his or her name in printed letters.
Pay and submit your application
In most cases you must pay a fee. You can pay using Visa or Mastercard. When the fee is paid you submit your application. You and your employer will receive an email confirming that your application has been submitted. The Migration Agency will contact you if it needs more information.
The Migration Agency processes the application
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.
If you change your mind and no longer want to apply
If you want to withdraw your application, you must say so in a written letter to the Swedish Migration Agency. In the letter, you must state your name, date of birth, personal identity number (if you have one) and your case number. Also state your telephone number and address so that the Swedish Migration Agency can reach you if we have any questions. You must sign the letter. If you have given a power of attorney to someone, that person can withdraw the application on your behalf.
Show your passport
The Swedish Migration Agency must check your passport before a decision can be made. You may therefore need to show your passport at a Swedish embassy or consulate-general if you are outside Sweden, or one of the Migration Agency's service centres if you are in Sweden.
In some cases, you will not be required to show your passport, for example, if we have already checked your passport during a previous visit.
If you need to show your passport, we will contact you with information on how and when to do so.
If you need an entry visa or residence permit card to travel to Sweden, you will in most cases have your fingerprints taken and be photographed when you show your passport at an embassy or consulate-general.
If your family also applies for a residence permit, the Swedish Migration Agency must check their passports as well. The requirement to show your passport in person does not apply to children under the age of five, it is sufficient that the parent brings the child's passport to the visit. However, if the child needs a residence permit card, they must come along to be photographed for it.
Information needed for residence permit card
If you are granted a permit for more than three months you will receive a residence permit card. The card proves that you have permission to reside in Sweden and contains information such as your fingerprints and photograph.
If you need an entry visa for travel to Sweden you should therefore visit the Swedish embassy or consulate-general as soon as possible to be photographed and have your fingerprints taken, if you did not do this in connection with showing your passport. You need to do this even if you have previously had a residence permit card, as the information is not saved. If your family is also applying for permits, the family members also need to be photographed and have their fingerprints taken at the embassy or consulate-general. Always contact the embassy or consulate-general prior to your visit.
If you do not need an entry visa for travel to Sweden you can submit information for the residence permit card at the Migration Agency after arriving in Sweden. However, you must request and have your work permit issued before you travel to Sweden.
Swedish embassies and consulates-general External link, opens in new window.
Read more about residence permit cards
Countries whose citizens need a visa to enter Sweden External link, opens in new window.
Receiving the decision
You will receive an email confirming that a decision has been made. You are given the actual decision by the embassy or consulate-general that you have specified in your application. Your employer will also receive a notification about the decision by mail.
You need to bring your passport when collecting your decision. If you have been granted a work permit you will receive the residence permit card within four weeks of being photographed and fingerprinted at the embassy or consulate-general.
The residence permit card will be produced at the time the decision is made, but no earlier than three months before the residence permit becomes valid.
We cannot speed up the production or delivery of the card.
If you do not apply online
If you are unable to apply online, fill out Application for Swedish work permit, number 149011, and turn it in to a Swedish embassy or consulate-general in the country where you are living. The application form indicates the documents you need to enclose.
If there is no possibility to apply in your country, you should apply at the embassy or consulate-general nearest to the country where you live. Before you submit your application you should contact the embassy or consulate-general.
Each member of your family who plans to accompany you to Sweden must turn in an application of their own to a Swedish embassy or consulate-general.
Application for Swedish work permit, form 149011 Pdf, 922.5 kB, opens in new window.
Application for a permit for family members of workers, researchers, athletes or coaches and those running their own business, form 133011 Pdf, 904.4 kB, opens in new window.
Swedish embassies and consulates-general External link, opens in new window.