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Sweden & Kenya

Moving to someone in Sweden

If you want to move to Sweden to live with your family or a close relative, you need a residence permit. Read more at Swedish Migration Agency about how to apply for yourself and on behalf of your child. The Embassy of Sweden in Nairobi is responsible for applications when the applicant is legally residing in Burundi, Kenya, Rwanda, Somalia, Seychelles, Comoros and Eritrea.


The easiest way to apply for a residence permit is to apply online. An online application goes directly to the Swedish Migration Agency.

If you are unable to apply online, please ask your family members in Sweden to fill out the electronic application form, attach copies of documents and pay any application fee.

Swedish Migration Agency online application

If you are still unable or do not want to apply online, you can submit an application at the Swedish Embassy.

All requests for interview appointments, appointments for submission of applications and other queries about residence permits should be sent by email to ambassaden.nairobi-visum@gov.se.

The waiting times for interviews and submissions of applications is currently between 2-5 weeks.  

New procedure for paper application

Since 3 May 2021, the procedure for those who submit a paper application in order to apply for a residence permit to move to a family member in Sweden has been changed. Paper applications, submitted from 3 May 2021, will now be handled in the same way as an application in the e-service (online application). This means that there will no longer be an interview in connection with the paper application being submitted.

There might be special circumstance to consider depending on where you are applying or which nationality you have. Please choose the applicable country.

New rules for passport check

The Swedish Migration Agency introduces new rules for better passport checks for residence permit applicants. 

From 1 November, applicants for a residence permit must show their passport at an in-person visit before the Swedish Migration Agency can grant a permit. The Migration Agency will contact affected applicants to schedule an appointment with the Embassy or Consulate General for passport and identity control.

Read more about the new rules for stricter passport checks - Swedish Migration Agency (migrationsverket.se)

After the application for residence permit has been granted, citizens of these countries need residence permit cards to travel to Sweden. The card will be ordered automatically if the applicant have been photographed and submitted his/her fingerprints during the application process. If you have not been photographed and fingerprinted, visit the Embassy during our opening hours to provide biometric data.

It will take up to four weeks for the residence permit card to be made and delivered to the Embassy. Therefore, we do not recommend that you purchase tickets before receiving your card. Once the card has arrived, you will receive an automatic e-mail. The Embassy will contact you to schedule an appointment to the card during our opening hours.

Applying and interview

Apply for residence permit in Sweden online through the Swedish Migration Agency’s website.

Your family member has to fill in a questionnaire. Once you have sent in your application, he or she will automatically receive an e-mail with instructions. The family member must reply to the questions within two weeks.

Contact the Embassy once you have received an e-mail from the Swedish Migration Agency to book a time for interview. You book a time for interview by sending an e-mail to ambassaden.nairobi-visum@gov.se.

In the e-mail, state your personal details and your case number. If you cannot communicate in English or Kiswahili, an interpreter has to be present during the interview. Inform the Embassy whilst booking your interview if you need an interpreter and in what language.

Bring your passport and the originals of the documents you attached to your application to the interview.

Interviews with children 

Children applying for residence permit are also interviewed. If the child is too young or unable to conduct an interview, the person looking after the child is interviewed instead.

After the interview

After the interview, your case will transfer back to the Swedish Migration Agency that will decide in your case. If you did not attend the interview or did not contact the Embassy to book an appointment in time, your case will be transferred to the Swedish Migration Agency and your application may be rejected.

When the Swedish Migration Agency has decided in your case, you will be informed through the e-mail stated in your application. The actual decision will be sent to your family member in Sweden if you have authorized him or her to represent you. Otherwise, you will be informed of the decision by the Embassy. The Embassy will contact you by sending an e-mail or calling the telephone number you provided when you applied for residence permit.

No decisions will be sent through e-mail.

Collection of residence permit cards by a third party

If you cannot be present at the Embassy to collect your residence permit card, you can authorize a third party to represent you. If you do so, provide an original signed power of attorney appointing someone else to collect the card on your behalf. If the power of attorney is not written in Swedish or English please provide a translation. A copy of the representative's passport or ID should be attached to the power of attorney to identify the representative on the applicant's behalf.

Kindly visit the following link for more information.


Basic information about: Moving to someone in Sweden

Basic information applicable to all countries is available here. In some countries, additional conditions also apply – for more information, select a country from the 'Select Country Here' drop-down list.

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