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Working in Sweden for less than six months

If you reside in another country, and come to work in Sweden for less than six months, your employment income from work in Sweden will normally be taxed in Sweden. In most cases you will need to file an application for taxation in accordance with the Special Income Tax for Non-Residents Act. However, this depends on:

  • the duration of your stay in Sweden, and
  • if you work for a Swedish employer or a foreign employer who is established in Sweden.

Working for a Swedish employer or a foreign employer who is established in Sweden

If you work in Sweden and your stay here lasts less than six months, you are required to pay tax in accordance with the Special Income Tax for Non-Residents Act, or SINK. SINK is applicable if your employer is a Swedish employer, or a foreign employer who is established in Sweden. You are then considered as having a limited tax liability in Sweden, but note that only income from Swedish sources will be taxed here.

SINK means the following:

  • You pay a flat-rate income tax of 20%, which is deducted by your employer.
  • You do not have to declare your employment income on a Swedish tax return.
  • You cannot make any deductions against your Swedish income, for costs or similar.

If you are going to work in Sweden for at least six months, please find more information under Working in Sweden/Working in Sweden for six months or less/Working in Sweden for at least six months.

Please contact the tax information service (Swe: Skatteupplysningen) on 0771-567 567 if you want to discuss your tax liability.

Applying for a special income tax decision (SINK decision)

You may apply for SINK, or your employer may do so on your behalf. To apply:

  1. fill in the form Application – Special income tax on non-residents SKV 4350b (in English) or Ansökan – Särskild inkomstskatt för utomlands bosatta, SKV 4350 (in Swedish),
  2. enclose a copy of your passport or other ID, and
  3. submit the form to the Swedish Tax Agency.

If you do not have a Swedish personal identity number, or a Swedish co-ordination number, the Swedish Tax Agency will issue a co-ordination number with your SINK decision, if such a decision is made.

You must give a copy of the SINK decision to your employer.

Please find more information on SINK in the following brochure:

Special income tax if you work in Sweden and reside abroad/Särskild inkomstskatt för personer som arbetar i Sverige och bor utomlands, SKV 442

Working for a foreign employer who is not established in Sweden

According to the rules of SINK, your income may be exempt from taxation in Sweden if:

  • you work less than 183 days during a twelve-month period in Sweden (the time period of 183 days may not be exceeded “in any twelve month period commencing or ending in the fiscal year concerned”),
  • your income is an employment income,
  • the income is not paid by a foreign employer who is established in Sweden, and
  • the salary cost is not borne by an employer who is permanently established in Sweden or resident here.

If you have a foreign employer who is not established in Sweden, you need to submit the form Application – Special income tax on non-residents SKV 4350b (in English) or Ansökan – Särskild inkomstskatt för utomlands bosatta, SKV 4350 (in Swedish) to the International Tax Offices in Malmö or Stockholm.

If you do not have a previously assigned Swedish personal identity number or a Swedish co-ordination number, the Swedish Tax Agency will issue a co-ordination number with your Special Income Tax decision.

International Tax Offices in Stockholm and in Malmö.

Choosing to be taxed in accordance with the Income Tax Act instead of the SINK Act

If you stay in Sweden for less than six months, you can choose to be taxed in the same way as a Swedish resident, in accordance with the Income Tax Act, instead of under the SINK Act. In that case, you need to file a personal income tax return in Sweden. You will then pay an average municipal income tax on your income, and may have to pay a state tax on some of your income.

You are then entitled to deduct costs, for example costs for travelling between your home and your place of work, or costs for increased living expenses. You must request this in your income tax return, and you should be prepared to explain the costs and their connection with the declared income.

You may also be entitled to basic allowance deductions and general deductions. This assumes that the excess of your earned income in Sweden and other countries, exclusively or almost exclusively (90 %), consists of income earned in Sweden.

In order to request to be taxed in accordance with the Income Tax Ac, submit the form Application – Special income tax on non-residents SKV 4350b (in English) or Ansökan – Särskild inkomstskatt för utomlands bosatta, SKV 4350 (in Swedish). Please state in the ‘Other information and claims´ section that you wish that the Income Tax Act be applicable instead of SINK, and specify the costs you wish to deduct.

It is also possible to file an income tax return after the end of the income year, and request that the income subject to SINK instead be taxed in accordance with the Income Tax Act. You may also request, no later than the sixth year following the fiscal year, an amendment of the SINK decision and to be taxed in accordance with the Income Tax Act. Read more above: “Request of re-assessment for income to be in accordance with the Swedish Income Tax Act  or the SINK Act”.

Rules for working as an employed person in Sweden SKV 345B

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