Calculating the residence period for permanent residence permits


If you are going to apply for a permanent residence permit, you must ensure that your residence period in Norway is long enough and that your stay has been continuous.

What residence period applies to you?

There is a requirement of five years of residency for those who:

  • have residency after applying for protection
  • have protection (asylum) because you are a family member of a refugee (derived protection/asylum)
  • come to Norway as resettlement refugees
  • have residence due to strong human considerations
  • have family immigration with a person in any of the groups above, or have family immigration with a person in any of the groups above who has later been granted a permanent residence permit.

There is a requirement of three years of residency for those who have other types of permits, such as:

  • work immigration
  • family immigration with a Norwegian or Nordic citizen
  • family immigration with other foreign citizens who do not have residency due to protection or strong human considerations

What does it mean that your stay must be continuous?

In order for the stay to be deemed to have been continuous:

  • You must not have been without a residence permit for more than three months in total during the past three or five years. Stays without residence permits are reckoned from the date when your residence permit expired until you submitted an application for a new residence permit.
  • As a rule, you cannot have stayed outside Norway for a total of more than seven months during the past three years.
  • If the requirement of five years of residency applies to you, you cannot have been residing outside Norway for more than a total of ten months in the last five years.
  • If you hold a residence permit as a skilled worker, you can stay outside of Norway for up to 15 months, provided that you can document that at least eight months of the stay are due to work-related travel on assignment for your employer.

What date will the residence period be reckoned from?

  • Suppose you stayed in Norway when you applied for your first residence permit, forming the basis for a permanent residence permit. In that case, the residence period is reckoned from the date on which your residence permit was granted (the decision date).
  • If you were granted your first residence permit before you entered Norway, your residence period is deemed to have started on the date when you reported to the police.
  • If you have been granted asylum (protection), your residence period is deemed to have started on the date when you applied for asylum (protection).
  • If you are a resettlement refugee, your residence period is deemed to have started on the date when you arrived in Norway.

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