Skilled Immigration

There is no difference between unskilled and skilled worker immigration

In Sweden there is no separation between skilled and unskilled workers when it comes to work permit requirements. So technically there is no skilled worker immigration to Sweden, just work immigration. Generally, everyone regardless of profession can apply under the standard work permit track. There are a few exceptions to this for the below:

  • performer
  • au pair (An au pair is a domestic assistant from a foreign country working for, and living as part of, a host family)
  • berry picker (Yes, picking berries.)
  • seasonal work
  • visiting researcher
  • athlete or trainer
  • trainees
  • ICT permit (read more about ICT permits on our website here)

Standard Work Permit

work permit process steps sweden skilled worker immigration

Aside from the above, all applicants can apply for a standard work permit. There is, however, a second type of permit that some people can apply for which is the EU blue card. This is implemented as part of an EU regulation and the intention is to make it easier for highly skilled workers to receive work permits. In addition to the standard work permit requirements which you can read about here, the applicant must also meet the following:

  • Have a salary of more than 50,500 (as of 2019 and is subject to change)
  • Have a university education equivalent to 180 university credits (for example a bachelor degree or higher), or five years’ relevant professional experience.

The EU blue card is an application that according to EU regulations should be processed within 90 days. I would recommend that you compare this to the processing time for a standard work permit which you can find here. Sometimes the 3 months can be faster and sometimes it can be slower than a standard work permit. In other EU countries these permits can have certain perks but in Sweden there are no additional perks and only extra requirements. As such most people choose to apply for a standard work permit.

There is one circumstance where an EU blue card can be considered more useful. This is in case you already hold an EU blue card in another EU country. In this case you are permitted to apply for the EU blue card in Sweden and stay while it is being processed. To do this you must have held an EU blue card in another EU country for at least 18 months and you must apply within 1 month of travelling to Sweden. You are, however, not permitted to work while awaiting the decision.