Obtaining the Necessary Swedish Paperwork

My Swedish paperwork is starting to come together now.  I don't know a whole lot about the process because my employer is handling it all for me, but there are a lot of steps and pieces.

There are 3 pieces that you need to get to live and work here in Sweden.  You need a work visa, a residency permit, and a personnummer (directly translates to personal number, it is Sweden's social security number).  Obviously I am the only one in the family that needs the work permit.  One thing that is kind of nice is that once I have mine, Sarah can automitically get one, she doesn't need a local company to sponsor her.

Now the exact process to obtain the work visa and residency permit is a little fuzzy to me.  All I had to do was provide some personal information and a photocopy of my passport to an agency that was handling the process.  Then I know that my employer had to provide some information on the job they are employing me to do.  All of that went to some agency for processing, when they were done it went to one of the Swedish Unions for approval.  After they approved it, it went to a third agency for final approval.  Once it was all done and approved, I have to go and pick it all up at an Embassy outside of Sweden.  I had to get a couple of passport photos, and book a trip to Copenhagen tomorrow to get it taken care of.  This whole process has taken about 4 weeks for me, which was expedited.  Normally the process will take a bit longer.

Sarah's and the kids residency permits will begin processing next week, as the kids passports just came in the other day.  We'll probably pick their's up in New York or Chicago prior to us all coming over here at the end of the year.

Then to get your personnummer is a completely seperate process.  I could not begin that process until I had the residency permit, so I will probably go to the local tax office tomorrow afternoon to begin that processing.  The personnummer is really important because you can't buy anything here (on credit) without it, which is understandable.  So I can't think about a car, or get a credit card for work expenses until I get that number.  I should be able to open a bank account without it, but not all banks will do it, so we'll have to see how it goes.

Overall, it was a very easy process for me, but I think that is due to my employer handling most of it for me.  I just had to provide information and go around to pick some stuff up.


Chris said...

Well getting my work visa was pretty easy, I hopped on a plane to Copenhagen. Grabbed a taxi to the Swedish embassy, there was no one there, they put the visa into my passport and I was done. Hung out in Copenhagen for a couple of hours and jumped on a plane back to Sweden. Now it's time to get my personnummer.

Anonymous said...

Hello. :) I am day dreaming of moving to Sweden. However, employment is a big factor, of course. May I ask, how did you find your job? THanks!

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