New rules from 1 June for those applying for work permit

The Swedish Riksdag has decided on several rule changes to strengthen the conditions for people with work permits. The new rules will come into effect 1 June 2022 and will affect almost everyone who applies for a work permit.

The new rules include, among other things:

  • If you are applying for a work permit, you will need to present an employment contract before you can receive a decision.
  • If you have or are applying for a work permit, you must show that you can support accompanying family members the first time they apply for a residence permit as a co-applicant.
  • It will be possible to apply for an extended work permit several times. In this way, you can stay in Sweden for more than four years, even if you do not meet the requirements for obtaining a permanent residence permit.
  • You can apply for a visa if you need to travel abroad on a business trip while waiting for a decision on an extended work permit (not valid for family members and not for private travels).
  • A new permit is introduced for people who are highly educated who want to come to Sweden to apply for work.

The new rules apply to both new applications and to people who are already waiting for a decision. This means that if you have already submitted an application for a work permit, you may in some cases need to supplement your application by submitting a copy of your employment contract. The Swedish Migration Agency will contact you or your employer if we need more information about the employment in order to make a decision.

Higher demands on the employer

The Swedish Riksdag has decided that an employment contract should be required instead of an offer of employment by the person applying for a work permit, as this places higher demands on the employer. An employment contract states what salary and other conditions an employer and the employee have agreed upon. The employment contract may include an agreement that the contract applies if the employee receives a work permit.

The new rules for work permits also include that in some cases the employer must notify the Swedish Migration Agency if the terms of employment change after the decision on a work permit. The Swedish Migration Agency will also have greater possibilities to check that the employer complies with the terms of the employment contract. Not complying with the agreement, or not notifying the Swedish Migration Agency of changes, can have negative consequences for the employer.

Detailed information on these changes will be published here on our website on 1 June when the new rules come into force.

Not everyone will need an employment contract

The requirement to present an employment contract when applying for a work permit will apply to most workers, but some exceptions exist. The following are not affected by the changes, but should continue to present the same documents as before:

  • EU Blue Card
  • ICT permits
  • Researchers
  • Professional athletes
  • Seasonal workers
  • Au pairs
  • Trainees
  • Volunteers under the European Solidarity Corps
  • Summer jobs for young people (so-called Working Holiday visa)