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Residence requirements for studies abroad

You must have resided in Sweden to receive student finance

In order to receive student finance for studies abroad, you must have lived in Sweden for at least two consecutive years at some point in the last five years. Solely being registered in Sweden is not sufficient, you must have lived here.

However, there are exceptions. In some cases, we may consider you as having resided in Sweden despite you residing abroad, for example if you are employed by the Swedish Government. There are also exceptions in accordance with EU law.

Exceptions in accordance with EU law

An exception to the requirement to residing in Sweden is the rules as stipulated in EU law. In these cases, you do not need to meet the residence requirement in order to receive student finance abroad:

  • You are studying within the EU/EEA, are socially integrated in Sweden, and are subject to EU law. For example, when CSN assesses whether you are socially integrated in Sweden, we take citizenship, period during which you have lived or worked in Sweden, family ties, and knowledge of the Swedish language into account.
  • You are the child of a migrant worker or self-employed person in Sweden.

You are subject to EU law under the following circumstances:

  • You are a Swedish citizen who is going to study in another EU country and is prevented from moving within the EU.
  • You are a migrant worker or self-employed person in Sweden who is going to study within the EU/EEA.
  • You are the family member of a migrant worker or self-employed person in Sweden and are going to study in the EU/EEA. If you are the child of a migrant worker or self-employed person in Sweden, you are covered by EU law regardless of the country in which you are going to study.
  • You have a right of permanent residence in Sweden and you are studying within the EU/EEA.

Exceptions as to whether you can be considered as a resident in Sweden while living abroad

If you have lived in Sweden previously, but are currently living abroad, we may still consider you to be residing in Sweden. This is true in these cases:

  • You are a government employee and have been posted in another country for work.
  • You have left Sweden to work for a Swedish faith community or an organisation that is affiliated with the community or a Swedish non-profit organisation that operates aid activities. The length of the stay abroad may not exceed five years.
  • You have left Sweden and are studying without student finance at a programme that gives the right to student finance, and you fulfilled the residence requirement when you moved. After leaving Sweden, your studies must have begun as part of the first new academic year.
  • You are a family member of one of the groups listed above. Family members include the accompanying husband, wife, partner, or children under the age of 18. This also applies if you live with the migrant if you have previously been married, entered into a partnership, or have or have had children together.

If you or a family member meets any of these requirements, you must submit a certificate from, for example, an employer.

Exception if you have already begun your education

If you fulfilled the residence requirements when you began your CSN approved studies abroad, you do not need to meet these requirements again. This regulation applies provided that you have studied with student finance without interruption since then.

Other exceptions to the residence requirement

Even if you do not meet any of the exception requirements, CSN may make an exception with regards to the residence requirement. This applies in the following scenarios:

  • You live abroad due to illness. This applies to those who are Swedish citizens and who have previously fulfilled the requirement to reside in Sweden.
  • There are exceptional circumstances. It is therefore important that you explain all the additional circumstances you wish us to take into account. You can enter them in the "Other" field when you apply for student finance.
Updated: 2023-01-11