When you decide to move to Sweden or are just spending some time in the country, you are faced with a couple of small, but important, details – personal identity number or coordination number. These numbers are like keys to Sweden’s doors, enabling you to access various services and opportunities.
Why must you have a Swedish personal identity number or a coordination number?
A Swedish personal identity number is a unique identification number allocated to a person when they are born or when they move to Sweden. It is made up of the date of birth (YYMMDD), followed by four figures. The personal identity number is usually used in contacts with Swedish public agencies, the healthcare system, the school system, and in many other areas. It is used for everything from health care and social services to bank transactions and working conditions.
A coordination number is allocated to people living temporarily in Sweden or not listed in the Swedish Population Register. It is used especially for people who are not, or have been, listed in the Population Register, and are therefore not eligible for a Swedish personal identity number. You need this number to be able to participate in certain activities, such as work or study, or to gain access to certain services while you are staying in Sweden. The coordination number is used to identify people in the situations where a personal identity number would normally be used.
The basic difference is that the Swedish personal identity number is the primary identification number for people who are permanently resident in Sweden, while the coordination number is a temporary alternative for those people who do not satisfy the requirements for a Swedish personal identity number but who constantly need to be able to prove their identity in Sweden.
Who can get a Swedish personal identity number?
You can get a Swedish personal identity number if you satisfy certain conditions. It is normally available to people who have permanent residence in Sweden or who were born in Sweden.
If you move to Sweden and will be living here for longer than 12 months, you must register in the Population Register and thereby be assigned a Swedish personal identity number by the Swedish Tax Agency (Skatteverket). Once you have been assigned a personal identity number, you retain it for the rest of your life. This means that the personal identity number does not change even if you move from Sweden.
How do you get a Swedish personal identity number?
To get a Swedish personal identity number, you must be listed in the Swedish Population Register and must have permanent residence in Sweden. If you are a Swedish citizen, you are assigned a personal identity number at birth if you were born in Sweden.
If you are from another country, and are planning to live in Sweden for more than 12 months, you must register in the Swedish Population Register. You will then be assigned a Swedish personal identity number.
You can find information about how to register in the Swedish Population Register and get a Swedish personal identity number in the article, Registration in the Swedish Population Register.
How do you get a Swedish coordination number?
Nordic citizens who are staying in Sweden for less than 12 months do not need to report their move to Sweden. Instead they can get a coordination number. A Swedish coordination number is assigned to people who are in Sweden temporarily and who do not satisfy the conditions for getting a Swedish personal identity number.
If you want a coordination number, contact the Swedish Tax Agency and apply for it. This number is typically necessary for a temporary stay, such as a short-term job or studies, or if you own a property in Sweden but are not registered in the country. The coordination number enables you to interact with various bodies and services in Sweden, such as public agencies, employers, banks, schools, landlords, mobile telephone operators, and electricity providers, while you are staying in the country temporarily.
It is the Swedish Tax Agency that decides if you can be assigned a coordination number. You must be able to prove your identity with information about your name, date of birth, and citizenship. Your application must also include information about your gender, place of birth, and contact address.
There are different ways to apply for a Swedish coordination number, depending on whether you, for example, are to be employed, run a business, or study, or if you own a property in Sweden but live in another country. You may apply for a coordination number yourself, or a Swedish public agency may decide that you will be assigned a coordination number.
If you later become listed in the Swedish Population Register, the coordination number is replaced with a personal identity number.
On the Swedish Tax Agency website, you can read about how to apply for a Swedish coordination number.
What applies for Swedish citizens born abroad?
Up until 2000, Swedish children born abroad were assigned a personal identity number at birth. In 2000, it was decided that Swedes born abroad to Swedish parents would be assigned a coordination number instead of a personal identity number.
This is because a Swedish child born abroad is not normally listed in the Population Register from birth. However, the child can be registered as a Swedish citizen with their first and last names in the Population Register.
If you were born abroad, you are not assigned a personal identity number until you move to Sweden and satisfy the requirements to be registered as resident in Sweden.
If you are a Swedish citizen and were born abroad, you can get a Swedish passport without having Swedish personal identity number.
Please fill in our contact form if you have any questions or if you have encountered an obstacle in another Nordic country.
NB! If you have questions regarding the processing of a specific case or application, or other personal matters, please contact the relevant authority directly.