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People from other countries are drawn to Sweden not only because of its natural beauty, but also because it is one of the safest places to live.

 If you are one of them, the first thing you should do is apply for a residence permit before coming to work or study here. If you plan to stay in the country for more than three months, this is required. People from EU countries are exempt from having a residence permit while for those from non-Eu nations this is a basic requirement and they must have a job in Sweden before applying for a residence permit.


 There are two types of residence permits:

  1. Temporary resident permit
  2. Permanent resident permit

The temporary resident permit is valid for two years which can later be made permanent. The permanent resident permit is valid for a maximum of five years.

  • A valid passport
  • A color passport size photo
  • For citizens belonging to a third country, there should be proof that you are legally staying in the country

The first step in the application process is to submit your application online and pay the fees using online payment methods.

The next step after submitting your application is to attend an appointment at the embassy. You will get an appointment only after the Swedish Migration Agency has gone through your application and then referred your case to the embassy.

For your appointment, you should carry all your original documents and your passport. Your fingerprints and photographs should be submitted at the embassy. Once you complete these formalities, your case will be transferred to the Swedish migration agency for their final decision.

Once your application is approved you will get a residence permit card from the migration agency. You can pick up your card from the embassy. This process can take up to four weeks.

The card will contain information about the type of permit, how long the card is valid and your personal information. It will also indicate whether you are permitted to work in Sweden.


In order to obtain permanent residency in Sweden, you must have lived in the nation for at least five years. Even if part of that time was spent unemployed, EU citizens will be given residency at the end of the five-year period. Non-EU citizens will have to demonstrate that they were employed for the entire five years (even if it was self-employment) and that they were able to support themselves and their families.

If you have a permanent resident permit you can travel in and out of Sweden, but you must have a valid passport if you want to travel out and have your residence permit card when you return. With your residence permit you can be away from Sweden for one year without affecting the validity of your residence permit.

In order to live and work in Sweden, you will no longer need to renew your permit. It is also possible to change jobs without needing to alter your residence permit.

Other advantages include the ability to bring family members to Sweden under Swedish family reunification legislation. Family members may accompany you on a temporary Swedish visa, but they must apply for their own visa.

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