Basic Facts

Sweden is located in Northern Europe bordering the Baltic Sea, Gulf of Bothnia, Kattegat, and Skagerrak. Neighboring countries include Finland and Norway. It is a Scandinavian nation with thousands of coastal islands and inland lakes, along with vast boreal forests and glaciated mountains. Its principal cities, the eastern capital Stockholm and southwestern Gothenburg and Malmö, are all coastal. With an area of 450,295 square kilometers, Sweden is the largest country in Northern Europe. 


*Please note that the official currency is the currency of remuneration when employed through WorkMotion in Sweden.

Capital :
Currency :
Swedish krona (kr, SEK)
Languages spoken :
Population :
10.42 million (2021 est.)
Minimum wage 2023 :
No minimum wage
Cost of Living index :
$$$$ (23 of 139 nations)
Payroll Frequency :
VAT - standard rate :
GDP - real growth rate :
4.8% (2021 est.)

Statutory Holidays

The national holidays mentioned below are valid for the year 2024.

Holiday Name
Extra Information
January 1
New Year's Day
January 6
March 29
Good Friday
March 31
Easter Sunday
April 1
Easter Monday
May 1
May Day
May 9
Ascension Day
May 19
Whit Sunday
June 6
National Day of Sweden
June 22
Midsummer's Day
November 2
All Saints' Day
December 25
Christmas Day
December 26
2nd Day of Christmas

Contract Sharing Time

The approximate time for sharing the contract with an employee in Sweden is 4 business days assuming no special requests or changes to our standard employment contract. Any such requests or changes would need to undergo internal and external review, directly leading to a time delay.

NOTE: This number is subject to change and is only an estimation of the Contract Sharing Time. The estimated Contract Sharing Time begins from the moment that WorkMotion has received all required information from both the client and the employee.

What You Need To Know

  • New employees negotiate their own starting salary. There is no statutory minimum wage.
  • There are no legal provisions for severance pay in Sweden unless specified in a collective agreement or employment contract.
  • Sweden’s employment law allows employees to take six months of unpaid leave to look for another job or to start a business, whilst retaining their right of employment in their jobs. Violation of this law by employers attracts damage fees.

Labor Conditions

Working Hours

Normal working hours in Sweden are a maximum of 40 hours a week. Monday is considered to be the first day of the week unless another arrangement is in place at the workplace. The contract of employment should give details of the working hours.



Overtime is limited to 48 hours over a four-week period or 50 hours over a period of one month. Total overtime may not exceed 200 hours in any 12-month period.

Overtime in excess of general overtime may be worked up to a maximum of 150 hours per employee over a calendar year if there are special grounds for doing so and no other reasonable solution has been possible (extra overtime).


Probation Period

A contract for probationary employment of limited duration may also be entered into, provided that the probationary period does not exceed six months. 


Termination Notice Period


An employee who wishes to resign must give at least one month’s notice, although notice periods may be longer than this depending on any applicable collective agreement.

Termination by the Employer

The notice period for collective (and other) dismissals is presented in the table below.


Tenure Notice Period
During probation 2 weeks
Less than 2 years  1 month
2 to 4 years 2 months
4 to 6 years 3 months
6 to 8 years 4 months
8 to 10 years 5 months
Longer than 10 years 6 months

Leave / Time Off

Annual Leave

All employees are entitled to at least 25 days of paid leave (i.e. five weeks’ holiday) per year after one year of work at the company. Vacation is accrued for the following year, meaning that in the first year of employment with a new employer, the employee is not eligible for paid vacation. 

Sick Leave

Employees on sick leave receive sick pay from their employer from the first day up to and including day 14. For sick pay, employers must make a waiting day deduction corresponding to 20% of the sick pay for an average week.

If the employee continues to be sick thereafter, they can obtain a sickness cash benefit from the Swedish Social Insurance Agency. The employer is required to notify the Social Insurance Agency in such a situation. Social insurance pays for sick leave starting on day 15.

Parental Leave

Parents in Sweden are entitled to a total of 480 days of paid parental benefits leave when a child is born or adopted. Each parent – should they be two – is entitled to 240 of those days. In the case of multiple births, an additional 180 days are granted for each additional child. A single parent is entitled to a full 480 days. Parental leave benefits are funded by the social security system. 


Maternity Leave

In Sweden, maternity leave is regulated under parental leave.

A female employee is entitled to time off in connection with childbirth for a continuous period of at least seven weeks prior to the estimated time for delivery and seven weeks after the delivery. Two weeks of this maternity leave is obligatory during the period prior to or after the delivery. Employers must be notified at least two months in advance.


Paternity Leave

The non-pregnant parent can receive compensation for 10 days of leave in connection with the birth of the child. This benefit is called temporary leave in connection with a child’s birth or adoption.

Other Types of Paid Leave

Leave for Urgent Family Reasons


An employee is entitled to leave employment for urgent family reasons related to illness or accident which makes the immediate presence of the employee absolutely necessary. A collective agreement may limit the number of leave days a year to a certain number of days for each occasion or to both.

Unpaid Leave

Leave to Conduct Business Activities


Full-time employees with permanent jobs can apply for six months leave of absence from their work to take time off to do other things. Perhaps they may wish to study, try a different job, start their own business, or take care of a close relative. After the leave of absence, they have the right to return to work with the same conditions as before.

Statutory Benefits

Mandatory employer’s social security contributions amount to 31.42% of gross salary, while employee social security contributions amount to 7%. The contributions are used to fund benefits such as an old-age pension, survivor’s pension, health insurance, occupational injury insurance, parental insurance, and unemployment insurance and also include a general payroll fee. Foreign employers who do not have a permanent establishment (PE) in Sweden must register for the payment of social security contributions.


Employer Contribution

Employee Contribution

Old-age pension contributions



Survivor’s pension contribution


Health insurance fees


Occupational injury fee


Parental insurance fees


Labor market levy


General payroll tax





Health Insurance

The employer contributes 3.55% towards health insurance.

The majority of health and medical care in Sweden is publicly financed. Most healthcare institutions are under public management, but there is also publicly financed healthcare run under private management.

Other Insurances

Accident Insurance

The employer contributes 0.20% to the occupational injury fund.

If employees injure themselves at work or on their way to or from work, they can receive compensation from the Swedish Social Insurance Agency. The same applies if employees become physically or mentally ill due to their work.

Unemployment Insurance

Employers pay a labor market levy of 2.64%.

People who become unemployed in Sweden can receive unemployment benefits through the unemployment insurance scheme (ersättning från a-kassa). This benefit consists of two parts:

  1. Basic unemployment insurance (grundbelopp), and
  2. Voluntary income-related benefit (inkomstrelaterad ersättning).
Parental insurance

The employer contributes 2.60% towards parental insurance.

Parental insurance is used to fund parental benefits for workers who take parental leave.

Public Pension

The employer contributes 10.21% towards the retirement pension whilst the employee contributes 7%.

Under the Swedish Pensions Agency, people receive a public pension which is based on their pensionable income. Normally the higher an employee’s salary and the later they retire, the higher their pension will be. The guarantee pension is granted from the month one becomes 65 years of age.

Other Statutory Benefits

Survivors’ Pension

The employer contributes 0.60% to the survivors’ pension.

There are three different kinds of public survivors’ pension: child pension, adjustment pension, and widow’s pension. This should cover part of the income that the deceased person contributed. 

Children who have lost one or both parents can receive a child pension (barnpension). Women and men who have not yet turned 65 and have lost their partners can receive adjustment pensions (omställningspension). Women can also receive a widow’s pension (änkepension) if they were married before 1990.


The information contained in this Country Guide is provided for informational purposes only and should not be construed as legal advice on any subject matter. The contents of this Country Guide contain general information and may not reflect current legal developments or address your situation. You should not act or refrain from acting on the basis of any content included in this Country Guide without seeking the advice or representation of a licensed attorney. WorkMotion Software GmbH disclaims all liability for actions you take or fail to take based on any content included in this Country Guide.

Information provided in this Country Guide is provided “as is” without warranty of any kind, either express or implied, including without limitation warranties of merchantability, fitness for a particular purpose, or non-infringement. WorkMotion Software GmbH periodically adds, changes, improves, updates, or removes information without notice, and assumes no liability or responsibility for any errors or omissions in the contents of this Country Guide. This Country Guide may contain links to other websites. WorkMotion Software GmbH disclaims all liability for the privacy practices or the content of such websites.