Skilled workers who are employed by a foreign enterprise and who are to provide services in Norway can be granted a residence permit.
Who is eligible for this type of residence permit?
You must be an employee of a foreign enterprise that has entered into a contract with a Norwegian enterprise. You must be a skilled worker. The term "skilled worker" covers the following categories:
- Specialist training corresponding to upper secondary education level. You must have completed vocational training for a specific occupation. The education must as a minimum correspond to upper secondary education level, i.e. at least three years. If your were educated abroad, you must have achieved the same level of expertise as you would have achieved had you been educated in Norway. Examples include vocational education for joiners, plumbers or auxiliary nurses.
- Craft certificate. A craft certificate taken abroad must have resulted in the same level of expertise as a Norwegian craft certificate.
- University college or university education. The requirement is a completed degree or study programme. Examples include nurses, engineers, Bachelor or Master’s degrees.
- Special qualifications. You must have gained expertise through professional experience of a certain duration, alternatively in combination with other training (courses and similar). If there is a formal education in the field in question, then your level of expertise must be approximately equivalent to the level of such education. Please note that, in principle, a skilled worker permit is only granted on the basis of special qualifications in exceptional circumstances and that thorough documentation is required.
In addition, your expertise must be relevant to your ability to complete the assignment.
What requirements apply to the employment relationship and the assignment?
- A contract must have been entered into between a foreign enterprise (the contractor) and a Norwegian enterprise (the client).
- The contract must state that you are to provide services of a limited duration in Norway.
- The client’s registered business address must be in Norway.
- You must be an employee of the foreign enterprise.
- As a rule, the offer of an assignment must be for one employer.
- There is no requirement for the assignment to be full time.
- The pay and working conditions must not be poorer than those stipulated in the current collective agreement or pay scale in the field. If no such collective agreement or pay scale exists, the pay and working conditions must not be poorer than is normal in Norway for the occupation and place concerned.
- If the position requires an academic education and is not covered by a collective agreement or pay scale, you must be paid in accordance with the government collective agreement, unless it is documented that other conditions are normal for the occupation and place concerned. This means that if you have completed higher academic education, for example hold a Master’s degree, your pay must be at least salary grade 47 in the pay scale for Norwegian state employees, currently NOK 396.900 per year. For lower-level academic education, for example a Bachelor’s degree, salary grade 42 in the pay scale for Norwegian state employees, currently NOK 368.000 per year, is the minimum pay.
- The Norwegian client must ensure that the foreign employer meets the requirement for pay and working conditions during the assignment, and must be able to document this to the supervisory or immigration authorities on request.
How to apply
Check where to hand in your application
- If you are outside Norway you hand in your application at a Norwegian embassy or consulate in your home country or the country where you have held a residence permit for the last six months. In some countries you will hand in the application at the Swedish or Danish embassy instead. Check here where to hand in the application.
- If you are in Norway, you can apply from here if you have held another type of permit for the past nine months. You can also apply from Norway if you have skilled worker qualifications. Read about entry visa for skilled workers. You must be in Norway legally, and you cannot be an asylum seeker.
Learn more about who can apply from Norway
Find out if you should apply online
You should register your application online if you apply from Norway or through a Norwegian embassy You cannot register your application online if you hand in the application at a Swedish or Danish embassy.
If you hand in the application at a Swedish or Danish embassy you must fill in a form on paper and hand it in at the embassy. You can find the form here. The form is also used for renewing a permit
Your client in Norway can apply on your behalf
The client in Norway can apply for a residence permit on your behalf if you authorise him or her to do so in writing. You can do this by filling in the authorisation section in the application form, by completing an authorisation form or by providing some other form of written authorisation. In this case, the application must be submitted to the police district in which the client has his/her registered business address.
Your employer abroad cannot submit a residence permit application on your behalf, since the employer does not have a registered business address in Norway.
What must be enclosed with the application?
When you have visited the embassy or police station and handed in your passport and other necessary documentation we will start to process your application
In addition to the completed application form, you must enclose:
- a copy of your passport
- a passport photo/ photo that meets specific requirements
- an offer of assignment form, signed by the Norwegian client, the foreign enterprise and yourself as a seconded employee
- a contract between the Norwegian client and the foreign enterprise documenting the nature of the contractual relationship. The contract must also clearly state which services you are to provide and that they are of a limited duration. If you are employed in an international company abroad and you are being sent on assignment to the Norwegian branch of the company, the contract may in exceptional cases be replaced by a confirmation from your employer abroad that you, for a specified and limited period, will work at the company’s branch in Norway
- your employment contract with the foreign enterprise
- a Certificate of Registration for the Norwegian enterprise from the Brønnøysund Register Centre
- documentation of education containing information about the duration of the education, its content and the level of the educational institution
- documentation of work experience containing detailed information from former employers about the duration, tasks and the nature of the activities
- information about accommodation in Norway
- documentation that you have paid the fee
As a rule, it is sufficient that you enclose a copy of the documents with your application, but you must be able to present the original documents when you hand in your application. You must also enclose translations of the documents into Norwegian or English.
The early employment scheme
The early employment scheme means that clients can allow seconded employees to start performing services before their applications have been processed. It is a requirement that you are employed in an international enterprise abroad and that you are to perform services to a Norwegian branch of the international company.
Your client can apply for a residence permit on your behalf if you authorise him/her to do so in writing.
If your client submits a complete application, i.e. an application with all the necessary enclosures, the police can issue preliminary confirmation that you may start performing services before your application has been processed.
A Norwegian embassy or consulate can issue you an entry visa if required, provided that the police have issued a preliminary confirmation to your employer and you are able to document your identity. Embassies of other countries cannot issue such an entry visa. If you live in a country where Swedish or Danish embassies represent Norwegian authorities, you must contact a Norwegian embassy in a country where Swedish or Danish Embassies do not represent Norwegian authorities. Please see list of embassies which accepts applications.
You must contact the police in the police district where the application was submitted in person within seven days of entering Norway. There, you must document your identity and confirm the application submitted by your client. The police will then issue you confirmation that you are entitled to perform services for the client in question until your application has been processed. You can start performing your services immediately after you have obtained such confirmation.
If you do not require a visa to enter Norway or if you already reside legally in Norway, you can submit the application to the police yourself. It is a condition that you have skilled worker qualifications and that you are not an asylum seeker. If the application is complete, the police can issue you confirmation that you are entitled to perform services for the client in question until your application has been processed. You can start performing your services immediately after you have obtained this confirmation.
You may not change clients while your application is being processed.
The police can refuse to issue preliminary confirmation to the client or confirmation to you if any of the criteria are not met. You have no right of appeal.
How long will it take to process the application?
See the list of the UDI’s expected case processing times at www.udi.no/caseprocessingtime.
Residence card to document your permit
If your application is granted, you must get yourself a residence card. This is a proof that you have the right to live in Norway. You will receive a letter which informs you that you must visit the police to have your fingerprints and photo taken. About ten days later the card will be sent to you by post.
Read more about residence cards
The content of the permit
- A residence permit as a service provider, seconded employee, is linked to the assignment or assignments stipulated in the contract. You may therefore not take other assignments than stipulated by the permit. Nor can you carry out work for an employer in Norway or engage in business activities in Norway.
- The permit can be granted for two years, but not, however, for longer than the duration of the assignment.
- The permit entitles you to repeated entry into Norway for the duration of the permit.
- The permit does not form the basis for a permanent residence permit.
- Family members can apply for residence permits pursuant to the rules relating to family immigration, provided that your assignment lasts for more than six months. If you are employed in an international company (and you are going to be on assignment for the Norwegian branch of the company), family members may be granted residence permits regardless of the duration of your assignment. This right only applies to spouses/cohabitants and children under the age of 18. Please note that your employer can not apply on behalf of your family members.
Is the permit renewable?
The permit can be renewed, but it can never be granted for a continuous period of more than six years. When you have held such a permit for a total of six years, you cannot be granted a new permit as a service provider, seconded employee, until you have stayed outside Norway for two years.
You must apply for a renewal of your residence permit at least one month before your previous residence permit expires, and the application must be submitted to the police where you live. A fee must be paid for renewal applications.
You can appeal a rejection
You can appeal the decision. Read more about how to appeal a decision at www.udi.no/appeals.
For more information, contact your nearest Norwegian embassy or consulate or the UDI’s Information Service for Applicants.
Read more about the conditions for this permit at the website UDIregelverk.no