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Reader Question: Will my Swedish post-Brexit residence status expire?

Richard Orange
Richard Orange - [email protected]
Reader Question: Will my Swedish post-Brexit residence status expire?
UK chief trade negotiator David Frost looks on as Britain's then-Prime Minister Boris Johnson signs the EU-UK Trade and Cooperation Agreement at 10 Downing Street, London, on Wednesday Dec. 30, 2020. Photo: AP

British people who were living in Sweden before December 31st, 2020 were eligible for "post-Brexit residence status", and received a certificate showing this, valid for five years. What happens when that five years is over?


When we posted our survey asking how Brits in Sweden were being affected by Brexit, several respondents said they were afraid of what would happen when they tried to renew their post-Brexit residence certificate in four to five years' time.  

“I don’t trust the UK government not to act in a way that would compromise my right to residency within Sweden,” said Kelsey, who lives in Skåne. “There is also little advice at this stage as to what would happen once the current residency runs out. Will we be able to renew under the same terms as the withdrawal agreement or be treated as non-EU migrants from that point onwards?”

The cards given to those with post-Brexit residence status need to be renewed with a new photo every five years. Photo: private

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There seems to be little reason to worry. 

According to the Migration Agency, post-Brexit residence status “applies indefinitely”. 

This means that even if the five years on your certificate has passed, you should still have right of residence in Sweden, and you simply need to apply for a new certificate. 

"This is a status the person has more or less for the rest of their life," Karl Lindberg, from the Migration Agency press office, told The Local. "The only thing is that the card/certificate is only valid for five years, so after five years the person needs to contact the Migration Agency to get a new card." 


What the agency hopes that British people will do in practice, however, is to apply for Swedish citizenship or permanent residency, which Lindberg said "brings masses of advantages". 

But this is not necessary, and those who wish can continue to live in Sweden on the basis of post-Brexit residence. 

The only way you can lose your post-Brexit residence status is if you leave Sweden "for a long period", Lindberg said. 

According to the Q&A for Sweden issued by the European Commission, post-Brexit residence can be lost if the holder spends five years living outside Sweden. 


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karen.s.staines 2022/11/13 15:08
But does the application for a new temporary residency card include providing evidence of employment again? If so this will bring challenges for some, as the new earning minimums will be in force by then.

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