29 June 2021

Changed requirements for permanent residence permits for employees and self-employed persons with family

The Swedish Parliament has enacted changes to the Aliens Act, which begin to apply on 20 July.

Among other things, these changes mean that there will be new requirements to obtain a permanent residence permit. There will also be changes to who is covered by the requirement to be able to financially support oneself (the maintenance requirement) when relatives apply for residence permits. If you are an employee or are self-employed and you apply for a permanent residence permit, this will affect you and any family members applying with you.

There are no transitional rules. This means that, if you have already applied for a permanent residence permit and have not received a decision before 20 July, your application will be examined according to the new rules.

New requi­re­ments for perma­nent resi­dence permits for employees

You apply for a permanent residence permit in connection with applying for an extension of your work permit.

To be eligible for a permanent residence permit as an employee, you must

  • have held a work permit for four years of the past seven years
  • be able to financially support yourself
  • be expected to live an orderly life.

The Swedish Migration Agency cannot yet say exactly what requirements will be set on your employment or income in order for you to be granted a permanent residence permit. More information on this will be published as soon as the rules are clear.

Perma­nent resi­dence permits for self-employed persons

If you have a permit as a self-employed person, you can be granted a permanent residence permit after two years. You apply for a permanent residence permit at the same time that you apply for an extended residence permit. To be eligible for a permanent residence permit. you must be able to financially support yourself and be expected to live an orderly life.

If you do not meet the requirements for a permanent residence permit, you may still be able to receive an extended residence permit as a self-employed person for two years. You can then apply for a permanent residence permit again the next time it is time to apply for an extension of the residence permit.

More strin­gent requi­re­ments for you and your family members

If you are granted a permanent residence permit, you are subject to a requirement to financially support yourself and your family (the maintenance requirement) in order for your family to be able to receive a continued residence permit – you must show that your income is enough to support your family and that you have a home of an adequate size and standard for you and your family to live in. If your family has applied for permanent residence permits, the application is examined only after these requirements are met.

Requi­re­ments for perma­nent resi­dence permits for the family

Your family members are not granted permanent residence permits just because you are granted one, and they also cannot receive permanent residence permits before you. However, they can apply for permanent residence permits at the same time as you.

To be eligible for permanent residence permits, your family members must have held residence permits in Sweden for at least three years, be able to financially support themselves (if they are 18 years old or older) and live an orderly life (if they are 15 years old or older).

If your family does not meet the requirements for permanent residence permits, they can still receive residence permits as family members to you. They can apply for a permanent residence permit the next time it is time to apply for an extension of the residence permit.

The Swedish Migration Agency’s website will be updated with the new rules on 20 July. More information will be published continuously in the form of news like this.