Blue Card In Sweden

The Blue Card is a permit that has been implemented in most EU countries with the intention of making it easier for highly skilled workers to obtain the right to work in the EU. But how do you know if this type of permit is right for you?


The Blue Card permit has slightly more requirements than a standard permit so not everyone will be eligible for it. The requirements are listed below:

  • Have a degree (bachelors) or 5 years of relevant work experience
  • Have applied for a comprehensive health insurance that is valid in Sweden for at least the first 3 months (national Swedish health insurance does not count for this. It must be a private insurance)
  • Have a contract or an offer of employment with an employer in Sweden
  • Have a salary that is at least 1.5x the average salary in Sweden (when writing this article the minimum salary is 54,150 SEK – check here for the latest salary updates)

There are also certain requirements that the employer in Sweden must meet:

  • They must have advertised the position for at least 10 calendar days in Sweden and the EU/EEA and Switzerland (generally the job portal that should be used to meet this requirement is Arbetsförmedlingen’s portal)
  • Create an offer of employment and send this to a trade union for their comments on the conditions of the employment
  • Provide health, life, occupational injury, and pension insurance

If all of the above requirements are met then you may be able to apply for an EU Blue Card.

eu blue card sweden work

Who should apply for an EU Blue Card?

Just because you qualify for this type of permit does not necessarily mean that it is the best permit for you. There are some pros and potential cons of this type of permit that are important to be aware of.

As this is a permit based on EU legislation there is a maximum processing time of 90 days (unless additional information is required). This can be quite nice to have as standard Swedish work permits to not have a legal maximum processing time. So how do you know if you should apply for a Blue Card or a standard work permit?

The benefits in Sweden are essentially the same for a Blue Card and a standard work permit so we have 3 questions so that you can know which one to choose:

  • Will the employer in Sweden have a certified company assisting with the process?
    If yes, a standard work permit is most likely the best option. A standard work permit is processed within 10 days if the application is submitted by a company that is certified with the Migration Agency.

    An EU blue card application is generally processed within 2-3 weeks, but the Migration Agency has up to 90 days to process it. This means that if the case officer is busy, it will take longer to process than a standard permit.

  • Do you plan on working in other EU countries within the next 4 years?
    If yes, then a Blue Card application might be best. Since many EU countries have Blue Card permits it can in some cases be easier to move if you have one. Some EU countries will also count the time you have held a Blue Card in Sweden when reviewing an application for permanent residence.