How to apply for a Swedish Personal Number & ID
– EU Citizens Edition –
Quite a few inspirational people believe “It’s about the journey, not the destination” and that may be true in many cases. However, and I am sorry to tell you, this post is about the destination, because you want to get a personal number and an ID, am I right? I will guide you through the application process.
… Who is Skatteverket? What is a Swedish Personnummer? Do I really need that number? Why would I want to have a Swedish ID?
And well, there may be even more questions running through your head. Before we start with the step by step guide, I will clarify some of them.
Who is Skatteverket?
Skatteverket is a government agency in Sweden. Its main tasks include the registration of tax duties and respective collection of national taxes, as well as the administration of the population register, which is called “folkbokföringen”. Its headquarter is located in the Solna municipality, close to Stockholm, and the agency has approximately 100 offices across Sweden. If you want to know about other Swedish agencies that are important and useful to know, check out Anita’s article about 4 other important agencies apart from Skatteverket.
Why would you need a Swedish personal number?
The number is your identity in Sweden, almost everything will be saved on it. You will need it if you want to receive healthcare services (which does not mean that you cannot get emergency treatment without it), open a bank account, get insurances, sign contracts and much more. Universities also register it for administration purposes. It functions like a central register, if the government checks it they can see where you study, what your bank account is and how much taxes you have to pay if you have a job, for instance. As an EU citizen you have the right to reside in Sweden for 3 months, however, to apply you need to study for minimum 12 months.
The Swedish Personal Number
A Swedish personal number is individually assigned, meaning no one else has the same one as you do. It consists of 10 numbers, 6 digits (usually) separated by a hyphen from 4 other digits. The first six numbers indicating your date of birth (YYMMDD) are separated from the last 4 ones by a minus (-) if you are younger than 100 years old, being older than a century will be indicated by a plus sign (+). The first 3 digits after the hyphen are a serial number whereof the last digit indicates your sex. An even last number is assigned to females and an uneven one to males. The final digit is a so called check number where part of your digits are multiplied and added to get a sum, check here for more information. Thus, in case you are a female born on October 25 in 1993 might look as follows:
Why a Swedish ID card comes in handy
Now that we have answered why you might need the number, I am going to tell you why a Swedish ID card comes in handy, too: whenever you need to prove your age and identity in Sweden, you have an officially accepted document and a nice side effect is that you will not always need to explain why you have a personal number, but are not Swedish and why you reside here and yet need to prove your identity with another nationality’s ID. Trust me, it saves a lot of time to be able to simply show a Swedish ID.
So, what situations could that for instance be?
– Visits at the pharmacy or bank
– Police controls
– Picking up a parcel at a post office
– Buying goods at Systembolaget
Application for a Swedish Personal Number
In order to be registered in the Swedish Population Register (folkbokförd) and obtain the number, you have to inform Skatteverket that you have moved to Sweden.
To start the whole application process, but also to obtain more useful information, please visit: https://www.skatteverket.se/
Skatteverket’s web page is also the starting point of our journey through the Swedish bureaucracy. If you follow the link, the page you will be landing on is going to look like below. And I know what you are thinking right now: “Holy moly, everything is in Swedish. Getting a number will remain a dream since it is impossible that I will by any chance enter the right information”.
Lucky you that you have stumbled across this blog post!
Overcoming your first challenge, please go to the upper right-hand corner, click on “other languages”, scroll down and choose “In English”.
Et voilà, here we are on the landing page in English language. Now, let’s start the actual process of applying for a Swedish Personal number and click on the big field titled “Moving to Sweden”.
As soon as you clicked on it, you will be forwarded to a page that will look as shown further below.
When I moved to Sweden, I was lucky enough for Skatteverket to come to our campus and setting up a temporary office here for 3 days. Thus, I did not have to go to their office until later in the process. If them visiting your university is not the case, you need to do the next step, otherwise you can skip it and go directly to the application form.
There is a blue font saying where to find your nearest tax office, click on it and then enter your city or zip code on the next page. When you are done typing in the name, in my example Jönköping, click “Sök”, which means search.
Here, you will find you nearest office:
Filling out the application form
Continuing with the application, you go back to Moving in Sweden and scroll down until you see a yellow button saying “Move to Sweden”. I would recommend opening it in a new tab or window.
Again, save your life by clicking on “English” in the upper right-hand corner on the page you will land on now. The information will then be given in English, you should read it carefully and click on the yellow button again at the end.
You can then fill in all the information and click on continue! EU citizens who already have a Nordic Personal Number (I did because I have lived in Denmark before), you will find that example further below!
If you enter any of the Nordic countries, like Denmark in my case, you will be able to enter your CPR number or Nordic citizen number. However, this does only concern people who have previously lived in Scandinavia. The remaining steps stay the same for everyone.
Make sure to fill in all information correctly!!!
Below, you can now enter how Skatteverket can contact you. Thus, you may also fill in additional phone numbers or email adresses you possess, if you like.
If there is anything you belive Skatteverket should know about you that is really important, fill in these information in the empty box below.
This is the last step now while filling out the form. Please state the languages your documents are issued in. In my case: English and German since I have a German passport but university documents required are issued in English.
As soon as you have filled everything in, you can click on view or print application. Both ways are fine since you can doublecheck the PDF whether you filled in everything in a correct manner (this preview is likely to look as any of the two photos shown below – either file preview or downloaded one). Save it to your computer if you have not downloaded it yet (for Windows computers you might need to go to your toolbar, click on print, then: Microsoft Print to PDF), print it and bring it on paper to your local Skatteverket office the day you want to apply.
What documents are required?
The day you go to Skatteverket to apply for the number, as an EU citizen who is studying in Sweden you need to bring following documents:
– The form you have just filled out as a printed version!
– Passport/national ID
– If you are not unmarried: document showing your civil status (e.g. married)
– Admission/AcceptanceLetter from your university in order to show that you study for more than 2 semesters, i.e. longer than 12 months. Usually you get it quite soon after you have been admitted to your program!
– Letter of Enrolment/Confirmation of Registration
– Self-signed assurance that you have enough financial resources to fund yourself during your stay in Sweden
– Document confirming your have a comprehensive health insurance (for example European Health Insurance Card is valid for students)
If you are a Nordic citizen, check out what to bring here.
Congratulations, the first and biggest step is done now! 🙂
Application for a Swedish ID card
You go back to Moving to Sweden, but this time you click on “Apply for an identity card“. You will land here:
I recommend you to carefully read the section “Before you apply for an ID card” before you book an appointment and make sure, that you fulfill all the conditions. On the same web page you also find the link to booking an appointment.
VERY IMPORTANT: pay the application fee in advance and print the payment receipt! The bank details can be found here as well. If you paid the fee and checked that you are eligible, you are ready to book an appointment if you follow this link and search your city, the date and time! Then select the appointment you wish to take.
Now, as an EU citizen you only need to go there with your passport, personal number and the money transfer receipt. They will check everything, measure your height, take a photo, order the card and inform your as soon as it is ready to be picked up at their office. Bring all the documents you needed for the application plus the letter they will hand you over during the application on spot when you come there to pick everything up.
I hope this guide contained some useful information and will facilitate your application process!
Do you already have a Swedish ID number or are planning to apply? If you have some useful tips to share, feel free to share them below? I am looking forward to your comments!
All the best,