Just arrived in Sweden? In our step-by-step guide we show you how to obtain the three essentials: Residency, Personal Number, and ID card.
So you’ve either relocated to Sweden or you’re about to. By now you’ve probably realized that until you obtain your Swedish Personal Number or “personnummer” you’re incredibly limited in what you are allowed to do in Sweden.
What is a personnummer? The Swedish personnummer is a unique identification number that is based on your date of birth and remains the same for your entire life. This number allows you to become part of the Swedish system and is used as your personal identification when making large purchases and signing contracts.
Without a personnummer it is impossible to do the most essential tasks like, finding a job, going to the doctor, attending school or opening a bank account. It’s frustrating, and depending on your circumstances it may or may not be a simple thing to acquire.
Each newcomer brings with them their own complicated situation when moving to Sweden. Some are transferred here for work, others for studies and many for love. While we can’t possibly provide an exact guide for every scenario we can we cover the basic steps each person must take to completing their transition into their new home.
In our step by step guide to becoming a Swedish resident we cover:
- Registering for Residency (Applying at Migrationsverket)
- Registering for Personal Number (Applying at Skatteverket)
- Applying for ID card (Applying at Skatteverket on Södermalm)
1. Registering for Residency
- Upon arrival in Sweden you are required to register with the Swedish Migration Board or “Migrationsverket”. To do so you will first go to their website to find the appropriate forms for you (info is available in English, under “EU/EEA-citizens” in the toolbar on the left). Print and fill out the form for a residence permit or right of residence.
- Once you have filled out the appropriate form, make copies of all other required documentation as outlined (e.g. passport, marriage certificate, children’s birth certificate, etc.).
- Send these documents to the Migrationsverket via normal post or deliver them in person. Migrationsverket will assess the documents and, if accepted, a residence permit will be delivered to your Swedish address within weeks.
Stockholm visitor’s office is located in Solna:
Pyramidvägen 2 A, Solna
Stockholm Postal Address:
The Swedish Migration Board/Migrationsverket
169 29 Solna
Telephone: 0771-235 235
2. Registering for Personal Number
- Once you have received your residence permit you are required to register with the Swedish Tax Agency or “Skatteverket”. This is a population registration or “folkbokföring” which everyone living in Sweden must register for to be entered into the system as a tax-paying resident. This process allows you to vote in your local municipality, receive social benefits and assures that you pay the right amount of tax and insurance premiums. There is no charge to apply for a personnummer.
- Go to the Skatteverket with the same documentation that you sent to the Migration Board (e.g. passport, marriage certificate, children’s birth certificate, etc.) along with your new residence permit, and they will give you the appropriate form in order to register in the country and receive a personal number. This will be sent in the mail within a few weeks.
Clerks working at the Skatteverket will speak English if you have not learned Swedish yet. However, the Skatteverket website appears only in Swedish.
It’s also important to note that if you move away from Sweden, you must cancel your registration.
Visiting address (Service Office):
Klara Västra Kyrkogata 13;
Monday 9:00 to 18:00
Tuesday – Friday 10:00 a.m. to 16:00
Please be aware of shortened hours around holidays (Easter, All Saints’ Day, Christmas, etc.)
Telephone: 0771-567 567
3. Applying for a Swedish ID card
Once you have received your personnummer, you are ready to apply for a Swedish identity card. The Swedish ID card is the primary form of identification in Sweden and is necessary for conducting everyday business like, bank transactions or picking up prescriptions at the apotek. Your national passport will normally not be an acceptable form of identification.
Written by: Kristan Coleman
Research by: Carmel Heiland
Do you have a question or personal experience on this topic that you’d like to share? Leave it in the comment section below!