If you are a relative of someone applying for a residence permit to live with you in Sweden

A person who is a citizen of a country outside of the EU and EEA, and who wants to move to Sweden in order to live with a family member, must apply for a residence permit. The permit must be granted before the move to Sweden.

Your husband, wife, common law spouse, registered partner and your children under the age of 18 can be granted a residence permit in Sweden if

  • you are a Swedish citizen, have a permanent residence permit or a temporary residence permit with refugee status
  • you can support yourself and the family members who are applying for residence permits
  • you have a home of sufficient size and standard for you to live in
  • you and your partner are at least 18 years old.

If you have applied for asylum and have been granted a temporary residence permit or if you have a temporary residence permit due to exceptionally distressing circumstances, or due to impediments to enforcement, both you and your partner have to be at least 21 years old in order for the one of you applying to be able to get a residence permit. You must also have lived together before you fled to Sweden. Exceptions may be made if you have children with each other.

If you are a Swedish citizen or have a permanent residence permit, the person you are planning to marry or take as common law spouse can also be granted a residence permit in order to join you in Sweden.

In exceptional cases, a close relative who is not and will not be your husband, wife or common law spouse may also be granted a residence permit to come and live with you in Sweden. This requires that you have a permanent residence permit. Exceptions will not be made if you are a Swedish citizen.

Read more about residence permits for close relatives

If you have a temporary residence permit with status as a person eligible for subsidiary protection your asylum application needs to have been registered on or before 24 November 2015 in order for your family to be entitled to join you in Sweden. If you applied for asylum after 24 November 2015 and your status is as a person eligible for subsidiary protection, your family will only exceptionally be entitled to join you in Sweden.

Other rules apply for members of families of persons who have moved to Sweden to work or study.

Read more about what applies for members of families of persons with work permits

Read more about what applies for members of families of persons with residence permits for studies

Maintenance requirement

If you are the person living in Sweden, you have to be able to support yourself as well as the members of your family who are applying for residence permits. You also need to have a home of sufficient size and standard for all of you to live in.

Your maintenance

You need to show that you have a regular, work-related income with which you can support yourself and the members of your family who are applying for residence permits. Examples of work-related income include

  • wages for work
  • unemployment benefit
  • sickness compensation
  • earnings-related retirement pension.

You will also fulfil the maintenance requirement if you have sufficient savings or other assets for you and the members of your family who are applying for residence permits to live on.

Your home

You must have a home of sufficient size and standard for all of you to live in. For two adults without children, a home with a kitchen or kitchenette and at least two rooms is sufficient. If children are going to live in the home as well, there have to be more bedrooms. Two children can share a bedroom.

The home can be a sublet, but the lease has to be approved by a landlord, tenant-owners’ association or regional rent tribunal.

You must be able to use the home as soon as the members of your family arrive in Sweden.

Exceptions to the maintenance requirement

The requirement that you be able to support and house yourself and your family does not apply if you

  • are under 18 years of age
  • are a refugee or a person eligible for subsidiary protection, and members of your family apply for residence permits within three months of your receiving a residence permit. This only applies if the member of your family in question is your husband, wife, common law spouse, registered partner or child under 18, and if you are unable to be reunited in a country outside of the EU. You and your partner must also have a well established relationship
  • have a family member who is applying for an extension of his/her residence permit.

Other requirements for applications made before 20 July 2016

If a member of your family submitted their application before 20 July 2016, the maintenance requirement is lower. You only need to prove that you can support yourself and that you have a home of sufficient size and standard for you to live in.

The maintenance requirement does not apply if a member of your family applied for a residence permit before 20 July 2016 and if you

  • are a citizen of Sweden, a country within the EU/EEA or of Switzerland
  • have a permanent residence permit and have lived in Sweden for at least four years on a residence permit for settling
  • are under 18 years of age
  • have received a residence permit as a refugee or have been given refugee status
  • have received a residence permit as a person eligible for subsidiary protection or have been given status as such
  • have been granted resettlement in Sweden as you have been included in the Swedish refugee quota
  • have special grounds, such as a long-term reduction in your ability to work due to illness
  • have a family member who is applying for an extension of his/her residence permit
  • have a child under 18 who is applying for a residence permit. This applies whether the child is applying alone or together with the other parent.

Questionnaire

Once a member of your family has submitted an application for a residence permit to join you in Sweden, you will be sent a questionnaire about your relationship. If you are subject to the maintenance requirement you will also have to prove that you can support yourself and those members of your family who are applying for residence permits, and that you have a home of sufficient size and standard for all of you to live in. Your answers are important for the Migration Agency’s assessment of the applications by members of your family, and it’s also important that you answer the questions within the period of time you have been asked to do so.

Online applications

Members of your family can apply for a residence permit online. To do so they will need your address, telephone number, email address and Swedish personal identity number. The Migration Agency will use your personal identity number to check that you fulfil the requirements which will allow your partner or a member of your family to apply for a residence permit online, and also to check whether you are subject to the maintenance requirement or not.

You can make the online application for a member of your family, but this requires that you have a power of attorney (a document) from him or her giving you the right to do so. The member of your family can hand in a power of attorney when s/he visits the embassy or the consulate-general.

Apply for a residence permit

Read more about powers of attorney

In order for the Migration Agency to be able to process an online application from a member of your family, you must in your capacity as next of kin in Sweden

  • be at least 18 years old. The person applying for the residence permit must also be at least 18. If you have a temporary residence permit in Sweden, you and your partner must be at least 21 years old. Exceptions may be made if you have children together
  • have a permanent residence permit, a temporary residence permit with refugee status, or be a Swedish or Nordic citizen, if the person applying is your husband, wife, registered partner or common law spouse
  • have a permanent residence permit, or be a Swedish or Nordic citizen, if you plan to marry or become the common law spouse of the person applying for a residence permit
  • have a permanent residence permit or be a Danish, Finnish, Icelandic or Norwegian citizen if the person applying is another close relative
  • have a valid email address
  • be able to scan or photograph and attach a copy of your passport or identity card when you answer the questionnaire.

If you have a temporary residence permit with status as a person eligible for subsidiary protection your application for asylum must have been registered on or before 24 November 2015 in order for your family to be able to move to Sweden to join you. If you applied for asylum after 24 November 2015 and your status is as a person eligible for subsidiary protection your family will only exceptionally be able to move to Sweden to join you.

Once a member of your family has submitted an application you will receive an email. This will contain instructions for logging in online to get access to the questionnaire, which you have to fill in within two weeks. Please note that you should not register as a user to fill in the questionnaire before you have received an email from the Migration Agency.

Power of attorney

At any time during the application process, the member of your family making the application can give you a power of attorney. If you have a power of attorney to represent the member of your family, notification of the decision will be sent to you. If this is the case you are responsible for informing the member of your family about the Migration Agency’s decision. If you do not have a power of attorney the member of your family who applied will be notified of the decision by the embassy or the consulate-general.

What is a power of attorney?

A power of attorney can be a signed letter stating that the person applying for a permit authorises another person to represent him or her. A power of attorney can, for example, give someone the right to make an application, see the reasons for a decision or appeal a decision on behalf of another person. The power of attorney must be signed by the person who is authorising another person. The original must be available to present upon request from the Swedish Migration Agency.

To be considered valid, a power of attorney must indicate:

  • that it is a power of attorney
  • the name, date of birth and address of the person who is authorising another person to act on their behalf
  • what the authorised person has the right to do
  • the name, personal identity number and address of the authorised person
  • the signature of the person who is authorising another person.

Follow the application

When your family member has submitted their application, he or she receives a reference number (case number). This number allows you to check if the Migration Agency has registered your application or if a decision has been made.

Check the application

When you have received an e-mail directing you to complete the questionnaire

When you click that you agree to the terms of use below, the login page will open and you can register as a user. You will then receive the login information you need in order to fill in the questionnaire.

If your answers have not been received within a period of two weeks after the application by a member of your family was submitted, the Migration Agency may refuse your application.

Please note that you should register your marriage or partnership with the Swedish Tax Agency in Sweden.

Application at an Embassy or Consulate General

If your family member is unable to apply online, they must apply through a Swedish Embassy or Consulate General. Once the application has reached Sweden, the Swedish Migration Agency reviews it and then sends a letter home to your registered address. In the letter it says that we have received your family member's application and that we need you to complete a questionnaire and submit it to us. You will receive information on which questionnaire to fill in. Please do not fill in a questionnaire before you have received instructions on which form to fill in.

It can take between a few weeks and a few months before you receive a letter with information about the questionnaire.

Last updated: 20 July 2016