Work permits for performers

Among the various types of performers are singers, musicians, dancers, circus artists, actors, directors and filmmakers. Accompanying technicians and the like are also included in this category. Performers who are citizens of a non-EU country need a work permit.

Citizen of certain countries also need a visa to work for less than three months.

Countries whose citizens require a visa for visits shorter than three monthsexternal link, opens in new window

Learn more about applying for a entry visa

Exemptions from the work permit requirement

You do not need a work permit if you

  • have a temporary gig for a radio or television broadcast by Sveriges Radio AB, Sveriges Television AB, Sveriges Utbildningsradio AB or Nordisk Television AB
  • are planning to work on a temporary basis in Sweden for up to 14 days over a period of 12 months as a performer, technician or member of the tour staff. You must have been invited by an established arranger.

However, citizens of certain countries need a visa to enter Sweden.

List of established arrangers

Countries whose citizens require a visa for visits shorter than three monthsexternal link, opens in new window

Learn more about applying for a entry visa

Requirements for obtaining a work permit

In order to obtain a work permit, you must

  • have a valid passport
  • have a contract with the arranger in Sweden
  • have a written offer to work in Sweden
  • have been offered terms of employment on the same level as Swedish collective agreements or that which is customary in your occupation or industry
  • have been offered a monthly pretax salary of at least SEK 13,000.

Read more about the requirements to which the arranger is subject

How to apply

You can apply online in the country you are living in.

If you do not need a visa to enter Sweden, already have a valid visa for the period or have a residence permit in another Schengen country, the arranger in Sweden can apply on your behalf.

Learn more about how the arranger in Sweden can apply on your behalf

You will probably be required to pay an application fee.

Fees for work permits

Enclose the following documents with your application

  • Copies of the pages in your passport which show your personal information, photograph, signature, passport number, passport issuing country, the period of the passport's validity and whether you have permission to live in countries other than your country of origin. Make sure to extend your passport if it is about to expire – you cannot obtain a work permit for longer than your passport's period of validity
  • a contract that includes any tour schedule, salary, place and time of the gig, and the signatures of you and the arranger
  • a job offer and a statement concerning the terms of employment by the trade union concerned – to be obtained from your employer or client in Sweden.

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 enclosed. 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.

This is particularly important to keep in mind if the application concerns a gig that is coming up soon.

Keep in mind that the Migration Agency might have to investigate the application further even if all the information and documents that we asked for are submitted.

Once we have received your application

If you obtain a permit for more than three months, you will also receive a residence permit card. The card, which is proof that you have the right to be in Sweden, contains your photo and fingerprints.

If you need a visa for travel to Sweden, you should go to the embassy or consulate general as soon as possible to have your picture and fingerprints taken. Your photo and fingerprints cannot be saved, so you need to go through the process even if you had a residence permit card before. Contact the embassy or consulate general before your visit.

If you do not need a visa for travel to Sweden, as soon as possible after your arrival in Sweden you should book an appointment to be photographed and fingerprinted at the Migration Agency.

Find your closest embassy at swedenabroad.comexternal link, opens in new window

Learn more about residence permit cards

Check if your application has been registered or if a decision has been made in your case

After the decision has been made

The decision will be sent to the embassy or consulate general you selected in your online application. Take your passport along when picking up your decision. You can obtain a permit for the period during which you have been offered employment but not past the time for which your passport remains valid. If you plan to continue working in Sweden, apply to extend your permit.

The Swedish embassy or consulate general will hand over or send the residence permit card to you as soon as it is ready. Don't forget that it might take up to four weeks to make and send the card to the embassy or consulate general after you receive your decision. You must show your residence permit card along with a valid passport when entering Sweden.

If you do not need a visa for travel to Sweden, you should be able to show a copy of the decision when you arrive. As soon as possible after you have arrived in Sweden, you should book an appointment to be fingerprinted and photographed. When your residence permit card is ready, it will be sent to your address in Sweden.

If your permit is valid for less than three months, you will need to show the decision together with your passport.

Check if your application has been registered or if a decision has been made in your case

The Swedish Institute's website Working in Swedenexternal link, opens in new window

Guide for you who will work in SwedenPDF

Learn more about how to extend your permit

Book an appointment at the Migration Agency in Sweden to be fingerprinted and photographed if you can travel without a visa

Important information regarding insurance

In order for you to receive a work permit, your employer must be planning to sign you up for health insurance, life insurance, occupational injury insurance, and occupational pension insurance when your employment begins. The insurance must be valid starting the day that your employment begins.

In order for you to extend your work permit, you need to have been covered by health insurance, life insurance, occupational injury insurance, and occupational pension insurance throughout the time you have had a work permit in Sweden.

If you need to seek medical care in Sweden, you may need to pay for the care yourself if you are not registered in Sweden in the Population Register, and do not have a Swedish Personal Identity Number. If you register in the Swedish Population Register, you can also be registered with the Swedish Social Insurance Agency, and covered by the country’s social insurance. However, to meet the insurance requirements that apply to work permits, it is not enough to be registered with the Swedish Social Insurance Agency.

To be registered in the Swedish Population Register and receive a Swedish Personal Identity Number, you generally need to have been granted at least a one-year residence permit in Sweden, and you generally need to be planning to live here for one year or longer. Therefore, you should register in the Population Register as soon as possible after moving to Sweden.

Read more about population registration on the Swedish Tax Agency websiteexternal link, opens in new window

Permits for family members

Members of your family can obtain permits for the same period of time as yours. Family members include

  • your partner (spouse, cohabiting partner, or registered partner)
  • unmarried children of you or your partner who are under 21.

Unmarried children age 21 or older can obtain a permit under certain circumstances. They must be financially dependent on you or your partner.

If you have a permit for at least six months, your partner can also obtain a work permit.

How your family can apply

If your family plans to accompany you to Sweden, you can include them in your online application.

If they not apply at the same time as you, they can do their own online application.

Learn more about how family members can do their own online application

Extending your permit

If your contract with the arranger is extended, apply to extend your work permit. Make sure to submit your application before your current permit expires. If you have had a work permit for at least six months and you apply before it expires, you have the right to continue working while waiting for the decision.

You can obtain a permit for the period during which the gig lasts but not past the time that your passport remains valid. A work permit as a performer can be granted for up to two years at a time for a total of four years. If you still have a contract at the end of four years, you can obtain a permanent residence permit. A permanent residence permit remains in force as long as you live in Sweden.

How to apply

You apply online to extend you permit. Apply no earlier than 30 days before your current permit expires.

In most cases you need to pay a fee.

Fees for work permits

If you have family members living with you in Sweden who also need to extend their permits, you apply for them in the same online application.

What you have to send with your application

  • Copies of the pages in your passport which show your personal information, photograph, signature, passport number, passport issuing country, the period of the passport's validity and whether you have permission to live in countries other than your country of origin
  • your contract
  • a job offer from your employer
  • certificates of employment from all your employers with information about the periods you have worked in Sweden if you have had a permit to work in Sweden for almost four years and you want to apply for a permanent residence permit
  • adoption documents if the child was adopted.

Learn more about the requirements for an online application

Once we have received your application

If you submit an application for an extension before your previous permit expires, you have the right to remain in Sweden while the Migration Agency makes a decision.

If you go abroad when your permit expires, you may have trouble re-entering Sweden until your new permit is granted. In that case, you might have to wait for your new decision outside Sweden.

If you obtain a permit for more than three months, you will also receive a residence permit card. The card, which is proof that you have the right to be in Sweden, contains your photo and fingerprints. Book an appointment as soon as possible to have your picture and fingerprints taken. Your photo and fingerprints cannot be saved, so you need to go through the process even if you had a residence permit card before.

Book an appointment at the Migration Agency to be fingerprinted and photographed

Learn more about residence permit cards

After the decision has been made

The decision will be sent to your address in Sweden. Once the residence permit card is ready, it will be sent to you within approximately one week.

If the Migration Agency refuses your application

If the Migration Agency refuses your application, you can appeal against the decision within three weeks from the date you received it. Information on how to do this is found in your decision.

We have disturbances in our online payment service and receipts are not provided at all times. However, your payment will reach us even if you do not receive a receipt.

We apologize for any inconvenience this may cause.

If you do not apply online

If you are not able to apply online, you must fill out the form Application for Swedish work permit – for applicants currently outside Sweden, number 149011, and submit it to a Swedish embassy or consulate-general in your country of residence. The application form specifies which documents to enclose. Contact the embassy or consulate-general before you submit your application.

Application for Swedish work permit – for applicants currently outside Sweden, form number 149011 (in English)PDF

Application for permit for family members of employees, visiting researchers, athletes and self-employed person, form number 133011 (in English)PDF

Find your closest embassy at swedenabroad.comexternal link, opens in new window

If there is no possibility to submit an application in your country, you must apply at the embassy or consulate-general closest to your country of residence. Contact the embassy or consulate-general before you submit your application for further information.

If you are applying at an embassy or consulate-general, you pay the fee when you hand in your application. For more information about the fee, contact the embassy or consulate-general where you are applying, as they do not have the same fees and terms of payment as the Migration Agency.

If you want to extend your permit, fill out the form Application for Swedish work permit – for applicants currently in Sweden, number 151011. The application form specifies which documents to enclose.

Send your application to the

Swedish Migration Agency
Box 3100
903 03 Umeå

Application for Swedish work permit – for applicants currently in Sweden, form number 151011 (in English)PDF

Application for permit for family members of employees, visiting researchers, athletes and self-employed person, form number 133011 (in English)PDF

In most cases you must pay a fee.

Learn more about fees and how to pay

Last updated: 2017-12-27

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If you wish to ask the Migration Agency a question you can find our contact details under the heading Contact us.