Essential Employment Paperwork in Sweden



EU/EEA nationals do not need a visa to enter or work in Sweden. They are only required to register for residence and work permit if the intended stay is more than three months. Non-EU citizens are legally obliged to obtain a visa to enter Sweden for three months, but a short-stay visa will not allow employment to take place within the three months. Those who intend to stay longer will the proper permit.

Expats from non-EU and EEA countries need to have both a work and residence permit if they are planning on working in Sweden for more than three months. These two legal documents should be in the possession of the foreign national before flying into Sweden and the first step for them is to secure a job offer from a Swedish employer. All aspiring professionals should keep in mind that permits for this country will only be granted if the job position has been advertised in the local labour market as well as in the EU for at least ten days and no qualified national or resident has been found to fill the vacancy.

Work Permit

It is the job of the expatriate’s future employer to write a job offer and have it authorised by the relevant trade union. The written offer should contain important details such as the foreign national’s role in the company, salary package and duration of work in Sweden. Employers who were able to get approval from the Swedish Migration Agency will receive an Employment Certification Form that must be forwarded to the expat. Swedish work permits are employer specific and are usually valid for the duration of the employment contract. Those who wish to renew their permits can contact or visit the Swedish Migration Agency for the latest renewal procedures.

Residence Permit

Residence permits should be applied for at the Embassy/Consular of Sweden in the expatriate’s home country. The Swedish residence permit is typically valid for the duration of the holder’s job contract or a maximum of five years. Permit holders will also receive a Residence Permit Card which will serve as a proof that they are legally allowed to live or work in Sweden. The documents that applicants must bring at the Consular during the application are listed below:

  • Valid Passport
  • Several Passport-sized photos
  • Copy of the Employment Certification issued to the Swedish employer
  • Employment Contract
  • Educational and Professional/Work Certifications
  • Completed application form