If you wish to move to Sweden to live with a close relative, you need a residence permit. It must be ready before you enter Sweden. Other rules apply to citizens of an EU/EEA country other than Sweden.
Close relatives are defined as:
- Anyone who is, or is to become, a husband/wife, registered partner or common-law spouse (cohabitee)
- Children under 18 and their parents.
Other relatives may only be granted a residence permit in exceptional cases.
The Government has proposed several changes in the area of migration. Some of these changes are to do with the possibility of being granted a residence permit because you have met someone you want to live with in Sweden. The changes enter into force on 20 July 2016. As of this date, all persons living in Sweden will have to be able to show that they can both support themselves and the person who is applying for a residence permit. This means that everyone who meets someone they want to marry or live together with must have sufficient income to be able to support both of them and a large enough home for them both to live in. The maintainance requirement does not apply to certain categories. Read more about it here.
Also, as of June 30th 2016 new rules apply for individuals applying for a residence permit with reference to close family ties to a person who is EU/EES citizen (other than Swedish). The Migration Court of Appeal has determined in a ruling that it will no longer be possible for individuals to apply for a residence permit with reference to close family ties to an EU citizen with right of residence. A person with right of residence or a permanent residence permit cannot be a reference relative in Sweden. Family reunificaiton will now be possible ontly through application for the so called "residence card" (not to be mixed with the "residence permit card" issued to the persons with residence permits). This ruling also applies to if you have previously been granted a residence permit with reference to your ties to a family member with right of residence, and you are now going to apply for an extension of your residence permit. In order for you to get an extension of your residence permit, both you and your partner need to fulfil the requirements for a residence permit. read more about it here.
However, you will still be able to get a residence card or have right of residence with reference to close family ties to a person who already has right of residence.
It is the Swedish Migration Agency that considers your right to a residence permit. For a full description of what rules apply, please check the Swedish Migration Agency website.
Swedish Migration Agency website
You will be informed of the decision in your case by your relative in Sweden, if you have authorised him/her to represent you. Otherwise you will be informed of the decision by the Swedish embassy/consulate.
Residence permit card
If you are granted a residence permit, you will receive a residence permit card. This card is proof that you have a residence permit.
If you need a visa to enter Sweden
If you need a visa to enter Sweden, the card is ordered automatically if you have already been photographed and fingerprinted. If you have not been photographed and fingerprinted, you should visit the embassy. It can take up to four weeks for the residence permit card to be made and delivered to the embassy.
If you do not need a visa to enter Sweden
If you have been granted a residence permit and do not require a visa, you travel to Sweden and arrange for the card there. Bring a copy of the decision to show at the border. Contact the Swedish Migration Agency to have your photograph and fingerprints taken. When your residence permit card is ready it will be sent to your address in Sweden.
Briefly, the following applies if you wish to move to Sweden to live with a relative, if you and/or your relative are citizens of the EU/EEA and if you intend to stay for longer than three months. It is important to note that Swedish citizens are not normally counted as EU citizens in this connection.
- If you are an EU/EEA citizen, you register your right of residence with the Swedish Migration Agency in Sweden. If your relative is not an EU/EEA citizen, you yourself may need a residence permit, and you apply for one from the Swedish Migration Agency after your arrival.
- If you are not an EU/EEA citizen but your relative is (although not a Swedish citizen), it may be enough simply to apply for a residence permit card from the Swedish Migration Agency. However, check who is counted as a relative in this connection. If you need a visa, you must have applied for one at the embassy before coming to Sweden. An application for a residence permit card, too, may be submitted to the embassy.
Read more about the rules for EU/EEA citizens and about who is counted as a family member on the Swedish Migration Agency website.