How to start business in Sweden? | A Self-employment Guide to Get Started
Language skill for Permanent Residence
When you apply for a residence permit in Sweden based on self-employment there are certain requirements tied to you as a person that you need to fulfill. One of the most important is connected to your language skills.
Although you might have a sound business plan and a good business idea, this is not enough in the eyes of the Migration Agency. There are other requirements that are to be met before the Migrations Agency can approve your application for a residence permit through self-employment and your investment in Sweden.
In most areas of business activity, the Swedish Migration Agency requires you to have relevant knowledge in the Swedish language to be able to obtain a residence permit through self-employment. In accordance with the Migration Agency’s reasoning, you cannot be considered able to independently manage your business in Sweden without sufficient knowledge in Swedish. What constitutes sufficient knowledge depends on your specific business and the need for Swedish to be able to conduct its operations.
If you don’t have the relevant knowledge in Swedish, and thus need someone to assist you in e.g. maintaining customer and supplier contacts, the Migration Agency deems you not having a real and decisive influence over the business in Sweden. If you lack relevant knowledge in Swedish, your application for a residence permit through self-employment can be denied.
Our lawyers at H I Law have extensive experience in assisting clients who have ambitions in establishing themselves and their businesses in Sweden. We make sure that you avoid common mistakes as well as rare ones. We at H I Law Firm know the requirements of the Migration Agency well and will make sure that you fulfill them all before we register your application for a residence permit through self-employment.
Self-Employment to Permanent Residence
There is a broad interest among people in the world to invest in Sweden due to the business opportunities that Sweden as a country offers. Coming to Sweden for the intention to invest and establish a business, can either be ground for a residence permit as a self-employed person or simply a relevant next step in your investment expansion. The criterias for obtaining such a self-employed residence permit are many, and not always completely straightforward. In this series of publications, we intend to highlight which criterias are particularly important, in this case the criteria of the investor’s previous experience.
To be able to obtain a self-employment residence permit, it is required that you as an investor have experience of conducting the specific business that you intend to establish in Sweden. In other words, you should be or have been self-employed in your home country (or other countries).
There are two different experience requirements. The first one is the actual ownership of a company, and the second one is that you have work experience within in the same field of operation that you intend to establish in Sweden. For clarification regarding the experience requirements here are two practical examples:
1) if your ownership experience is from the IT-sector and you intend to establish an IT-consultant business in Sweden, then you need to prove ownership from the IT- sector and your leading role in that company.
2) if your ownership experience is from the IT-sector and you intend to establish a restaurant in Sweden, you need to show that you have some type of working or management experience from the restaurant field. In Swedish case law there has been guidance regarding the question of who is to be characterized as self-employed. The requirement is that you own or have owned at least 50 % of a company. Even if you own less than 50 %, an application for a self-employment residence permit can be granted. What is important to keep in mind in that situation is that your position in the company and your influence is crucial. What is also important is how the remaining ownership looks like in the company.
We always recommend that you have an experienced lawyer by your side to make sure that your experience is enough in the eyes of the Swedish Migration Agency. Our lawyers have extensive experience from representing international investors in their plan to establish a successful business in Sweden. Don’t hesitate to contact us at H I Law firm for further information.