Official information British people moving to and living in Sweden need to know, including registering, residency and healthcare.
Brexit: what you need to know
There will be no change to the rights and status of UK nationals living in Sweden while the UK remains in the EU.
While the government continues to negotiate Brexit, you should:
Before you go
See our travel advice for Sweden and sign up for up-to-date information on local laws and customs, safety and emergencies.
You must do one of the following before you leave the UK:
- accept a job offer in Sweden
- accept a school or university place
- gather proof you are financially self-sufficient and have comprehensive health insurance
You should also have arranged accommodation.
If you are moving to Sweden for more than 1 year, making these arrangements will allow you to register with the Swedish Population Register once you are in Sweden and get an ID number (personnummer). You need a personnummer for things like opening a bank account, renting an apartment and getting non-urgent healthcare.
Visas and residency
See entry requirements for Sweden in our travel advice.
If you plan to live in Sweden for more than 1 year, you can register with the Swedish Population Register. The Swedish authorities will issue you an ID number (personnummer).
You can only register if you have a right of residence (uppehållsrätt) for a year or more, and have comprehensive travel insurance. As an EU citizen, you will automatically have this right if you can support yourself, either by work or by other independent means, or you are studying.
You will not be able to register if you are still looking for a job when you come to Sweden and don’t fall into another category that gives you a right of residence for 1 year or more.
If you’re planning to move in with a family member who lives in Sweden and you cannot support yourself, you must apply for a residence permit.
See our travel advice for Sweden.
The NHS has information about healthcare for British people living in and visiting Sweden.
Once you live in Sweden, you’re no longer entitled to NHS medical treatment in the UK.
You need a free European Health Insurance Card (EHIC) to get emergency medical treatment during temporary stays in EU countries. You also need comprehensive travel insurance to cover anything not covered by your EHIC.
You can search for a doctor or dentist in Sweden. For non-urgent health issues you can call 1177 “vårdguiden” (the equivalent of NHS Direct).
You should check your prescriptions are legal in Sweden. Many medicines available over the counter in the UK are only available on prescription in Sweden. You can only buy medicines (prescription and non-prescription) at Apoteket (authorised chemists).
S1 form – healthcare paid for by the UK
You may be entitled to state healthcare paid for by the UK if you live in Sweden and get an exportable UK pension, contribution-based Employment Support Allowance or another exportable benefit.
You need to apply for a S1 form – contact the Department for Work and Pensions’ International Pension Centre.
Working in Sweden
Some jobs may require a UK criminal records check (known as a DBS check).
See the Swedish Public Employment Service for information about working in Sweden.
We recommend you get professional advice on paying tax in Sweden.
You may be able to pay National Insurance while abroad in order to protect your State Pension and entitlement to other benefits and allowances.
If you have worked in Sweden, you should claim your pension through the Swedish Pensions Agency.
If you haven’t worked in Sweden, you should claim your UK state pension by contacting the International Pension Centre.
If you’ve worked in several EU countries, see state pensions abroad.
Life certificates for UK state pensions
If you get a ‘life certificate’ from the UK Pension Service, you need to respond as soon as possible – your payments may be suspended if you don’t.
Find out which UK benefits you might be able to get while you’re abroad and how to claim them.
Many income-related benefits such as Pension Credit and Housing Benefit can’t be paid if you’re abroad for more than 4 weeks.
Driving in Sweden
If you’re resident in Sweden, you can vote in local municipal and European parliamentary elections.
See travelling with pets.
Other useful information
- Government offices of Sweden
- English-speaking lawyers in Sweden
- Notary services for Sweden
- About Sweden
- Directory enquiries
Returning to the UK
To move your pension to the UK, contact the International Pension Centre.
Please note that this information is provided as a guide only. Definitive information should be obtained from the Swedish authorities. The Foreign and Commonwealth Office will not be liable for any inaccuracies in this information.