The right to vote in Sweden

Stemmeret i Sverige
How you become eligible to vote in elections in Sweden.

Elections in Sweden

Elections in Sweden

On the second Sunday in September, every fourth year, elections to the Swedish Riksdag (Parliament) and municipal and county councils are held in Sweden.

There are different regulations concerning whether you can vote in the respective elections in Sweden.

Municipal and county council elections

You are entitled to vote in municipal and county council elections if you were registered in the Population Register in Sweden 30 days before the election day and you are

  • a Swedish citizen
  • an EU citizen
  • a citizen of Norway or Iceland
  • a citizen of another country and have been registered in the Population Register in Sweden for three consecutive years before the election day.

Your 18th birthday must be no later than the election day. You are entitled to vote in the municipality and in the county council in which you were registered in the Population Register 30 days before the election day.

Elections to the Swedish Riksdag

You are entitled to vote in the election to the Swedish Riksdag if you are a Swedish citizen and are, or were once, registered in the Population Register in Sweden. In addition, your 18th birthday must be no later than the election day.

European Parliament elections

You are entitled to vote in the European Parliament elections if your 18th birthday is no later than the election day and you are

a Swedish citizen and are, or were once, registered in the Population Register in Sweden.

a citizen of one of the European Union member countries and are registered in the Population Register in Sweden.

If you are a citizen of another EU country and you wish to vote in a European Parliament election in Sweden, you must have notified the electoral roll (röstlängden) in Sweden. You cannot vote in two EU countries in the same election.

If you are a Swedish citizen and live in another EU country, you can submit a notification to the electoral roll for the European Parliament election in the country in question. If you are on the electoral roll for an EU country, you are removed from the Swedish electoral roll.

For the election to the European Parliament, if you are a citizen of an EU country and registered in the Population Register in Sweden, you will receive a form from the Swedish Election Authority on which you register or deregister on the Swedish electoral roll.

 

Sami Parliament (Sametinget)

In order to vote in the election to the Sami Parliament (Sametinget), you must register for inclusion on the electoral roll. You apply to the Sami Parliament for this. You are entitled to vote if you are Sami, your 18th birthday is no later than the election day, and you are either a Swedish citizen or a foreign citizen who has lived in Sweden for three consecutive years before the election day.

Referendums

In a referendum, the people vote on a specific issue. There are two types of referendum in Sweden - national and municipal referendums.

The right to vote in Sweden

The information in the Swedish Tax Agency’s Population Register 30 days before the election day determines whether you have the right to vote. Everyone who is entitled to vote and who is registered in the Population Register in Sweden is automatically included on the electoral roll (röstlängden) and receives a voter card by post. Swedes who are registered abroad must submit a notification every tenth year for inclusion in the electoral roll.

Voter cards are sent by post approximately three weeks before the election day. The voter card contains information about how to vote and which elections you are entitled to vote in. You must take your voter card with you when you are voting in advance at an embassy, consulate or at a polling station (vallokal) for the election. If you are voting at the polling station on the election day, you do not need to bring your voter card. If you have lost your voter card, you can order a new one by contacting the Swedish Election Authority. You can sometimes get a new voter card in the polling station.

You must be able to confirm your identity before you can vote. You do this by showing a valid ID, or another person may confirm your identity. The person confirming your identity must show a valid ID and give their personal identity number.

How to vote

In Sweden you can vote in several different ways. You can

Swedes living abroad

A Swede living abroad is a Swedish citizen who has emigrated from Sweden. If you are to be regarded as a Swede living abroad, you must have been registered in the Population Register at some time.

As a Swede living abroad, you are entitled to vote in the election to the Swedish Riksdag and the European Parliament election, but you must submit a notification to the electoral roll every tenth year for inclusion on the electoral roll. You can do this by completing a special form and sending it to the Swedish Tax Agency. Even a submitted vote from abroad in an election is counted as a notification to the electoral roll. The vote is counted in the election in question if it is received no later than the day before the election day.

For every election, Swedes living abroad who have notified the Swedish Tax Agency of their address in the other country receive from the Swedish Election Authority a special voter card and materials for sending their vote by post. Read more about Swedes living abroad on the Swedish Election Authority website.

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