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Parental benefits in Sweden

When you work in Sweden, you are entitled to leave with parental benefits (föräldrapenning) on the same conditions as Swedish citizens. It is Försäkringskassan (the Swedish Social Insurance Agency) that administers parental benefits.
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This information is for EU citizens only.

Length of the parental leave

If you work in Sweden, parental benefits allows you the opportunity to go on family leave for a total of 480 days. For joint leave, each parent has the right to 240 days. Of these, 90 days are reserved for each parent, while the other days may be transferred from one to the other. During the child’s first year, parents can go on parental leave at the same time and get parental benefits for the same days - so-called double days. Parents can take a maximum of 30 double days.

Amount of benefit

The benefit you are entitled to during your leave is calculated by Försäkringskassan, who make the calculation based on your current income.

 

The benefit is not the same throughout the benefit period:

  • For 390 of the 480 days, the benefit is 80% of the calculated income. The highest rate per day is 967 SEK (2018) before tax. It provided that you have worked at least 240 consecutive days before the birth. Otherwise, you get the basic amount of 250 SEK (2018) a day (the “basic level”).
  • For 90 days of the 480, the benefit is 180 SEK (2018) a day (the “lowest level”).
  • Note that you can choose how many days per week you want compensation, but the first 180 days have to be on the highest level. After the first 180 days you can choose when you want to take advantage of one or the other benefit level. This scheme means that many Swedes extend their parental leave period, since they do not seek compensation for every day.

 

You can get parental benefits, for children born before 1 January 2014, until the child reaches the age of 8 or completes first grade in school. For children born after this, payment is until the child turns 12 years or completes grade 5 in compulsory schools. After the child turns 4, you can only get 96 days’ maternity benefit.

Leave before the birth

Before the birth, the mother has the right to take leave with parental benefit for up to 60 days before the intended birth. These 60 days are included in the total 480 days. They are deducted from the number of days that can be used after the birth. If a corresponding Danish benefit is given for the same child for a period of time, it is deducted from the 480 days.

Apply for parental benefit

To begin payment of parental benefit you must send a so-called “maternity certificate” (moderskapsintyg) to Försäkringskassan. You get the certificate from your midwife at your Maternity Centre (Mödravårdscentral). When Försäkringskassan receives the certificate, they send information about parental benefit to you. You can apply for the benefit directly on Försäkringskassan’s website or call and order the “Request for parental benefit” (Begäran om Föräldrapenning) form, which you fill out and send in to the physical address. The telephone number is +46 (0) 771 524 524.