How to declare income

You declare income by filing an income tax return. As a sole trader, you have to file “Income Tax Return 1” (“Inkomstdeklaration 1”) and a supplementary NE form (“näringsbilaga NE”).

The easiest way to do this is to fill in a digital income tax return, but to do that, you or your representative must have a Swedish personal identity number and Swedish e-identification.


If you are not able to use the e-service, you can fill in your “Income Tax Return 1” (“Inkomstdeklaration 1”) on paper. The Swedish Tax Agency will have sent you the form at the beginning of the year.

If you have not received an income tax return, and are unsure whether you need to file one, please call the Swedish Tax Agency on 0771-567 567, or + 46 8 564 851 60 from outside Sweden.

You may have to file a tax return in Sweden. This depends on your income, and whether you have limited or unlimited tax liability in Sweden. You have unlimited tax liability if any of the following apply to you:

  • You live in Sweden.
  • You have a permanent address in Sweden.
  • You have a substantial connection to Sweden

If you do not have unlimited tax liability, you have limited tax liability.

If you have unlimited tax liability, you have to pay tax in Sweden on all your income, whether it comes from within Sweden, or from another country.

If you have limited tax liability, you only pay tax on part of your income. You pay tax on any income generated from a permanent establishment in Sweden.

Tax agreements can limit Sweden’s right to tax income.

You have unlimited tax liability in Sweden if any of the following apply to you:

  • You live in Sweden.
  • You have a permanent address in Sweden.
  • You have a substantial connection to Sweden.

If you have had unlimited tax liability during a whole tax year, you have to file a tax return if you have received the form on paper. If you have not received a paper form, you must still file a tax return if your answer to any of the following statements about a tax year is “yes”:

  • You have had a business income of more than 42.3% of the price base amount (SEK 20 800 for 2020).
  • You have received an income of SEK 100 or more from passive business operations.
  • You have received capital income of SEK 200 or more. (Interest, dividends and earnings from the sale of a residential property or investment funds all count as capital income.)
  • You owned a property at the start of the tax year.

You must also declare income from outside Sweden.

You have unlimited tax liability in Sweden if any of the following apply to you:

  • You live in Sweden.
  • You have a permanent address in Sweden.
  • You have a substantial connection to Sweden.

If you have had unlimited tax liability during part of the tax year, you have to file a tax return if your business has received tax- and contributions-liable income of SEK 100 or more.

There are also other reasons for filing an income tax return, such as the following:

  • You owned a property in Sweden at the start of the tax year.
  • You received capital income of SEK 200 or more during the time you were living in Sweden, or had a permanent address in Sweden. (Interest, dividends and earnings from the sale of a residential property or investment funds all count as capital income.)

You also have to declare any income you received from outside Sweden during the time you were living in Sweden.

If you do not have unlimited tax liability, you have limited tax liability. If you have limited tax liability, you have to pay tax on business generated through a permanent establishment in Sweden. You have to file a tax return if you have received tax- and contributions-liable income of SEK 100 or more through your permanent establishment during the tax year.

There are also other reasons for filing an income tax return. You have to do so if, for example, you owned a property in Sweden at the beginning of the year.

Filing a preliminary income tax return


You have to file a preliminary income tax return:

  • when you start a business in Sweden and apply for F-tax approval.
  • if any change is made to your business activities.
  • when you close your business.

Anyone who applies for F-tax approval must file a preliminary income tax return. Preliminary income tax is paid on a monthly basis in Sweden. The idea is for you to avoid having to pay your tax all at once. When you have filed your preliminary income tax return, the Swedish Tax Agency will calculate how much preliminary tax you need to pay, and then inform you of what your monthly tax payments will be. You usually only have to file a preliminary income tax return once, because the Swedish Tax Agency then works out a flat rate for your preliminary income tax the following year. The flat rate is based on earnings from your business the previous year.

However, you do have to file a new preliminary income tax return if there is a significant difference between your preliminary tax and the tax you are ultimately due to pay. This means that if you expect the amount of tax due – once you have filed an income tax return – to be either about 30% more or less (a minimal price base amount applies, however) than your preliminary tax, you have to file a new preliminary income tax return.


Please note that your preliminary tax is not changed automatically for the tax year during which you close your business. You should therefore consider whether your preliminary tax needs to be changed, and then file a preliminary tax return if necessary.

Filing an income tax return


You file an income tax return the year after a particular tax year, reporting the results for that year.

The Swedish Tax Agency then works out the amount of tax your company is ultimately due to pay, based on its income tax return. This amount is then compared with the preliminary tax paid for the tax year in question. A tax notice is then issued to your company, indicating whether it needs to pay in more tax, or is due to get a tax refund.

As a rule, companies file an income tax return once a year. As a sole trader, you file an income tax return on 2 May the year after a particular tax year.

Non-Swedish sole traders that have a permanent establishment in Sweden, need to work out which income is generated from that permanent establishment and has to be declared in Sweden. This is called profit attribution.

Here is some important information about how a company should go about attributing or allocating profit to its permanent establishment:

The amount of tax you have to pay in Sweden depends on whether you have unlimited or limited tax liability in Sweden. You have unlimited tax liability if any of the following apply to you:

  • You live in Sweden.
  • You have a permanent address in Sweden.
  • You have a substantial connection to Sweden.

If you do not have unlimited tax liability, you have limited tax liability.

You pay ordinary income tax in Sweden. This means that you pay 30% income tax: on the surplus from your business activities; and on earned income.

Besides this, you pay a further 20% government income tax on any income over and above SEK 509 300 (2020).

If you have limited tax liability during the whole year, you pay 25% municipal tax on your taxable income.

Besides this, you pay a further 20% government income tax on income over and above SEK 509 300 (2020).

If you are covered by the Swedish social security system, you pay self-employed contributions. These contributions are 28.97% of the surplus from your business activities. You do not have to pay self-employed contributions if the contributions basis (in other words, the surplus from your business activities) is less than SEK 1 000.

How to declare income

You declare income by filing an income tax return. The easiest way to do this is to fill in a digital income tax return, but to do that, you or your representative must have a Swedish personal identity number and Swedish e-identification.


If you are not able to use the e-service, you can fill in your income tax return on paper instead. You then send the form to the address written on it.

Non-Swedish companies that operate a business from a permanent establishment in Sweden must file income tax returns in Sweden. Non-Swedish companies that don’t have a permanent establishment in Sweden sometimes need to file income tax returns in Sweden too. This applies if, for example, a company owns a property in Sweden.

Filing a preliminary income tax return

You have to file a preliminary income tax return:

  • when you start a business in Sweden and apply for F-tax approval
  • if any change is made to your business
  • when you close your business.

Anyone who applies for F-tax approval must file a preliminary income tax return. Preliminary income tax is paid on a monthly basis in Sweden. The idea is for you to avoid having to pay your tax all at once. When you have filed your preliminary income tax return, the Swedish Tax Agency will calculate how much preliminary tax you need to pay, and then inform you of what your monthly tax payments will be. You usually only have to file a preliminary income tax return once, because the Swedish Tax Agency then works out a flat rate for your preliminary income tax the following year. The flat rate is based on earnings from your business the previous year.

However, you do have to file a new preliminary income tax return if there is a significant difference between your preliminary tax and the tax you are ultimately due to pay. This means that if you expect the amount of tax due – once you have filed an income tax return – to be either about 30% more or less (a minimal price base amount applies, however) than your preliminary tax, you have to file a new preliminary income tax return.

Please note that your preliminary tax is not changed automatically for the tax year during which you close your business. You should therefore consider whether your preliminary tax needs to be changed, and then file a preliminary tax return if necessary.


Filing an income tax return

A company files an income tax return the year after a particular tax year, reporting its results for the previous year. The Swedish Tax Agency then works out the amount of tax the company is ultimately due to pay, based on its income tax return. This amount is then compared with the preliminary tax paid for the tax year in question. A tax notice is then issued to the company, indicating whether it needs to pay in more tax, or is due to get a tax refund.

An income tax return is filed for a company once a year. A tax return can be filed for a legal entity by one of the following four dates:

  • 1 March
  • 1 July
  • 1 November
  • 15 December

Your company’s income tax return must be filed six months after the end of the tax year. It should therefore be submitted by the date closest to the six-month deadline.

Non-Swedish companies with a permanent establishment in Sweden need to work out which income is generated from that permanent establishment, and has to be declared in Sweden. This is called profit attribution.

Here is some important information about how a company should go about attributing or allocating profit to its permanent establishment:


Non-Swedish companies that are taxed as non-Swedish legal entities pay government income tax at a rate of 21.4% (for any tax year beginning after 31 December 2018). The tax rate will be reduced to 20.6% from 2021 (for any tax year beginning after 31 December 2020).

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