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A bit of a unique question

About residency, tax, immigration and maternity

ElizabethJ
post 7.Oct.2020, 03:49 PM
Post #1
Joined: 7.Oct.2020

Hello everybody - I'm hoping that somebody here might be able to offer me some advice as I've found myself in quite a complicated situation. This might be a long post so apologies and that you for those that can bear to read it!

I'm a British citizen resident in the UK working for a UK company. I'm in a long distance relationship with a Swedish citizen resident in Sweden.

Rather unexpectedly we have discovered we are pregnant - still very early stages.

I have previously asked my employer if I can work remotely from sweden part time and their response that it's fine until 31 December but after that I would need a visa and also they wont allow it because it might put the company at risk of triggering a Permanent Establishment in Sweden if the situation were to go on long term. They also said that if I were to stay in sweden over the 183 day threshold then I would become tax resident and would be required to pay tax and insurance in sweden which they say they are unable to administer as we dont have a shadow payroll system in sweden.

So ... since receiving that news from my employer I've found out that I am pregnant.

I'm not really sure where to go for advice on this - my partner cant leave Sweden for any significant length of time because he has other children from a previous relationship. He is also on disability benefit due to a long term injury so I am not sure whether that benefit would satisfy the maintenance requirements if I apply for residency as a spouse.

Given our financial position I think the best scenario would be for me to work out my pregnancy remaining in the UK but then I would like to have the baby and spend my maternity leave in Sweden with my partner with a view to settling over there and leaving my UK employment at the end of the maternity leave. It's not ideal as this is my first pregnancy and I would dearly love to have my partner by my side throughout but we need a financial safety net of my maternity pay.

I'm not even sure how to apply for a residence permit for maternity leave without creating a nightmare for my employer regarding the tax and insurance situation.

I would be so so so very grateful for any advice you can provide. We are delighted about the pregnancy but naturally quite anxious as the timing is far from ideal.

Many thanks once again
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Martin565
post 7.Oct.2020, 06:28 PM
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Joined: 4.Oct.2017

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ElizabethJ
post 7.Oct.2020, 08:15 PM
Post #3
Joined: 7.Oct.2020

Thanks Martin - you've put my mind a little bit ease by making it sound so simple!

Is it really likely to be turned around that quickly? Should I be worried about any delay to getting a personnumber between arriving in sweden and giving birth? Do you know how long these things usually take?

Also - do you think theres any advantage in letting the swedish migration authorities know about our intentions now? I.e. before Brexit? I'm wondering if theres anything we should be doing rather quickly before that 31 December date arrives?

I'm planning on keeping busy during my pregnancy by learning swedish online and studying for a TEFL certificate so that I can teach english internationally online from sweden after my maternity leave in case theres any delays in finding work similar to what I'm doing now. It's all quite daunting but I feel very lucky to have such great support from my partner.

Where theres a will theres a way!!

Sorry one last question- do you think the swedish immigration authority would ever refuse a residency permit in these circumstances? I'm just terrified at the potential prospect of finding myself heavily pregnant and unable to be with my partner for the birth and the maternity leave and thereafter!
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Martin565
post 7.Oct.2020, 08:53 PM
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Joined: 4.Oct.2017

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Martin565
post 7.Oct.2020, 09:30 PM
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ElizabethJ
post 7.Oct.2020, 09:49 PM
Post #6
Joined: 7.Oct.2020

Thanks again Martin - really appreciate you taking the time to explain your experiences.

I guess my concern is that in order to be able to take advantage if my maternity pay, I will need to work until pretty late into the pregnancy - so if I wait until I'm only a few weeks before the due date, then I'm worried that wont be enough time to get the healthcare sorted for the birth in sweden.

Also if I can apply for residency in advance before I go over and get the health stuff sorted, I dont know what that means for my employment. My employer has said that they cant do the admin required for withholding my UK tax and NI and I assume they would need to do that if I am granted residency.

I think I may need to get some legal advice! I'll be in sweden briefly at the end of october and then throughout November and December so I think we have lots to get on with.

Can anyone recommend a swedish immigration lawyer who could help us navigate this? We're near Vaxjo in the south.

Thanks again!
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*Guest*
post 8.Oct.2020, 06:00 AM
Post #7


I don't think you'll get normal residency in advance if you aren't living, work and paying tax here. Why would they?

With Brexit, a no deal would mean you apply for a visa as a non eu national, a slow process even for those married to a swede. A Brexit deal- that's guesswork just now.

Realistically the slower route is the child is born in the UK, your partner visits and registers the child as his at a UK swedish consulate. The child is then Swedish and has a personal number. Which will speed up and strengthen your case vastly.
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Martin565
post 8.Oct.2020, 08:30 AM
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Joined: 4.Oct.2017

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*Guest*
post 8.Oct.2020, 09:35 AM
Post #9


QUOTE (Martin565 @ 8.Oct.2020, 09:30 AM) *
but skogbo is wrong I think you can apply for residency and still be living or working in England as long as you are planning to settle in sweden. Must be someone on here that ... (show full quote)

You can apply for a coordination number when Sweden isn't your permanent home, but these are usually for people with a second home here, as it enables them to access and pay for the required services. I've never heard if anyone being given a number because they plan to or might settle here in the future who isn't already directly related to a swede living sweden.

Once the baby is born and registered with a Swedish father and guardian everything changes, but even then the OP will still be just the same as a Thai bride, a non eu national married or sambo'd to a Swede.
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TheExpatEagle
post 8.Oct.2020, 10:09 AM
Post #10
Joined: 23.Aug.2016


Even with a trade deal there is no FoM from December 31st so a visa will be required.

Assuming the situation applying to UK nationals is the same as all others, and why wouldn't it, then Sweden will insist you apply for a visa from your country of residence and wait for it to be granted before moving to Sweden. If you are already in Sweden you will, to coin a phrase, be sent back home in order to apply in the correct manner.

Swedes are a stickler for rules as are we Brits.

My advice is to give up your job and move to Sweden before December 31st. Moving before that date means you move under the current FoM arrangements meaning you do not need a visa even after December 31st.

Yes, you will forgo maternity leave but you have to think about what is the lesser of two evils?

To add another complication, those of us who remember life before Lisbon (the treaty) will remember once outside of the EU you will have strict constraints on the amount of money that can be freely moved. Anyone remember travellers cheques? I am not going to say a limit but it will make moving funds on a regular basis expensive and problematic.

As you can read in the forums some people take to Sweden and some don't. You should be sure you want to move here for Sweden rather than your partner alone because that can lead to a lot of friction, frustration and unhappiness.

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ElizabethJ
post 8.Oct.2020, 11:41 AM
Post #11
Joined: 7.Oct.2020

Thanks everyone for your advice - I think our next step is to speak to an immigration lawyer in sweden very soon so we can be clear about our options.

I can see that giving up my job now before brexit would make life easier but I'm just worried that we would have no financial safety net. I dont yet speak swedish and finding a job whilst pregnant seems like it wouldnt be that easy.

My partner is unemployed due to his long term disability so finances would be extremely tight and I'm not sure what financial assistance the swedish state could provide in these circumstances - and to be honest I would be reluctant to even ask for assistance given that I haven't paid into the swedish system and also I have never in my life claimed any benefits in the UK at all so it's just not something I'm comfortable with.

I guess i will also need to speak to my HR department at my UK employer again to let them know about the pregnancy. I wonder if maybe they might be able to figure something out about withholding my UK tax and NI so I can pay in sweden - or even if I need to pay both in the interim I would be happy to do that if it means that i can have that maternity period unchallenged. I just dont know if its administratively possible. I'm hoping that if it is, then the goodwill built up over the past 12 years of employment at my company may go some way to helping them figure something out for me.

It's all beginning to get quite frightening!

Thanks again for all your replies - really appreciate it.
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*Guest*
post 8.Oct.2020, 12:27 PM
Post #12


You won't be entitled any benefits in sweden unless you are a resident. You won't get to that point unless you have a job and income, as your partner doesn't.

It would be infinitely easier for him to come to the UK. They are severing no ties and risking nothing. You are risking everything for some one you have never lived with? And you've a baby on the way?
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ElizabethJ
post 8.Oct.2020, 12:33 PM
Post #13
Joined: 7.Oct.2020

The problem is that he cant come to the UK even though I would be able to support him- because he has children from a previous marriage and he takes his obligations as a father seriously - quite rightly. He has a great relationship with his children and they are young - it would just be impossible for him to abandon them.

And while I realise I am risking everything - my child will need both of its parents!
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*Guest*
post 8.Oct.2020, 12:40 PM
Post #14


I agree on the parenting bit. But the success rate of folk moving to sweden who don't speak the lingo, have job and a young baby isn't likely very high?

In a pre Brexit era and no baby you could move to sweden as an eu migrant worker and then apply for self employed tax status, your employer then pays you as a contractor pre tax. You need to work out how to get to that position.

Your partner if they are bothered should be able to get all the answers you need by calling migration and the tax office here directly.
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Martin565
post 8.Oct.2020, 12:52 PM
Post #15
Joined: 4.Oct.2017

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