New work permit regulation proposed

On February 2, the Swedish Minister for Justice and Migration – Morgan Johansson – received the initial report on the proposal for a reformed work permit regulation from the commission of inquiry led by Anita Linder. The report included proposals on a new type of talent visa for highly skilled labor, updated income thresholds in order to support dependent family members, and the removal of time limited temporary work permits, amongst others.

In February 2020, the Swedish government commissioned a report to review the current work permit regulation and potential for reform (see here). The existing work permit legislation, introduced in 2008, has been partly criticized due to a lack of employer responsibility in regard to employment conditions resulting in an increase in the abuse of labor and due to the strict application of rules whereby minor administrative mistakes have led to the deportation of highly skilled professionals.

In the report that has now been presented to the government, new proposals have been introduced that include, but are not limited to:

  • Removing the limit of temporary work permits before eligibility for permanent residence, however, keeping the ability to obtain permanent residence after 48 months of a work permit if the applicant wishes to apply for it. Permanent residence will only be issued if the applicant explicitly requests it.
  • Introduction of a talent visa valid for 9 months – allowing highly skilled workers to move to Sweden without a job offer to look for work or to explore the possibilities of starting their own business.
  • Income level threshold to support family reunification applications, and the removal of the requirement for a certain size accommodation.
  • The possibility to revoke a residence permit for co-applying family members (there is no legal ground for this today) if the precondition for the permit ceases.
  • Employer obligations to report changes in the offered conditions (if conditions change for the worse). Failure to report these changes within the month could result in fines or imprisonment.
  • Possibility to apply for a D-visa from within Sweden for applicants with a pending extension application, enabling travel despite no valid residence permit card.

A link to the full proposal (in Swedish) can be found here.

The report will now be sent for referral to the relevant government agencies and other interest groups. The final proposal is scheduled to be presented to the government in November 2021 subsequently leading a vote by riksdagen (the Swedish parliament) for approval.

EY will continue to monitor developments on the proposal and provide further information once the final proposals have been approved later in the year.

In the meantime, please don’t hesitate to contact a member of our EY Global Immigration team in Sweden for further information.

José Vaz, Elisa Tirén and Josef Gyrmai


José Vaz
+46 70 148 13 25


Elsa Tirén
+46 76 853 19 79


Josef Gyrmai
+46 70 845 97 63