Child allowance in Sweden

Svenske børnepenge
Read about Swedish regulations regarding financial support for families with children.

Families with children who live in Sweden, or who are covered by social insurance in Sweden, are entitled to financial support.

What is child allowance and large-family supplement?

Child allowance (barnbidrag) and large-family supplement (flerbarnstillägg) are a financial support that is automatically paid monthly to parents who live and have children in Sweden, and is payable until the child’s 16th birthday. If you have two or more children for whom you receive child allowance, you automatically receive a large-family supplement.

The large-family supplement is a supplement to the child allowance that gives extra financial compensation to families with more than one child, as the costs are normally greater when you have more children. The amount of child allowance and large-family supplement depends on how many children you have.

Are you entitled to child allowance and large-family supplement?

You receive child allowance if you are covered by social insurance in Sweden, and you are the parent or legal guardian of a child or children aged under 16. If you are covered by social insurance in one country, it is that country’s regulations that determine whether you are entitled to social insurance benefits.

You do not need to work to receive child allowance for your child. You receive child allowance even if you are a jobseeker or a student.

If you work in Sweden and you are the parent or legal guardian of a child in another Nordic country, you may be entitled to child allowance from Sweden. If the parents work in separate countries, they may be entitled to child allowance from both countries. It is normally the country where the child lives that will pay child allowance for the child.

If you separate and the child lives with one of the parents, the other parent must pay maintenance (underhållsbidrag) or ensure that the child is supported in some other way.

The size of the maintenance payment is affected by the child’s needs and the financial position of the parents.

If the child spends approximately equal amounts of time with each parent, then neither of the parents needs to pay maintenance for the child. However, in some cases this may be reasonable, for example if one parent has a higher income than the other.

The child may be entitled to maintenance support (underhållsstöd) if both parents have low incomes. This type of support can also be paid to the parent with whom the child lives, if the other parent does not pay maintenance.

Child allowance when the parents are covered by social insurance in two different countries

EU/EEA regulations contain special provisions for coordination of family benefits if you, as parents, or your children are covered by social insurance in different Nordic countries.

It is normally the country of residence that pays child allowance, unless both parents live with the family in Sweden and both work in another Nordic country.

Family lives in Sweden - both parents work in another Nordic country

If you are resident in Sweden with your children, and both parents work in another Nordic country, it is the country in which you work that will pay child allowance.

Family lives in Sweden - one parent works in Sweden while the other works in another country

If you are resident in Sweden with your children, and one parent works in Sweden while the other works in another Nordic country, it is normally Sweden, where the child lives, that will pay child allowance.

If the child allowance from the other country exceeds the amount payable in Sweden, the social insurance agency in the other Nordic country will pay a supplement corresponding to the difference. Contact the social insurance agency in the country where the child lives for further information about how to apply for the supplementary amount.

Family lives in Sweden - only one parent works, and that parent works in another country

If the parent living in Sweden does not work, the family is normally entitled to child allowance or corresponding benefit, and other family benefits, from the country in which the other parent works.

Family lives in another country - one parent works in that country while the other commutes to work in Sweden

If the family lives in another Nordic country, and one parent works in the country of residence while the other parent commutes to work in Sweden, it is generally the country of residence that will pay the child allowance.

Family lives in another country - only one parent works, and that parent works in Sweden

If it is only the parent that commutes to work in Sweden who has a job, it is Sweden that will pay child allowance.

Family lives in another country - both parents work in Sweden

If both parents work in Sweden, it is Sweden that will pay child allowance.

How do you apply?

You do not need to apply for child allowance. The allowance is paid automatically when you are registered as living in Sweden.

If you move abroad

You generally lose your entitlement to child allowance when you leave Sweden. However, some people may be entitled to child allowance even if the period abroad is longer than six months.

You must inform Försäkringskassan if you or the child will be living abroad for more than six months. If you forget to do this, you may have to pay the money back.

Who should you contact if you have questions?

You can call the Försäkringskassan Customer Centre at +46 (0)771-524 524, or look on the Försäkringskassan website if you have questions about what applies for you and your child.

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