A crucial consideration for a work permit application is the salary level. With many companies currently conducting annual employee salary reviews, we wanted to share some insights with you on this.
Regulation on acceptable salary levels for obtaining a work permit is regulated in the Aliens Act.
In short, this law states that the salary level must correspond with current collective union agreement levels. Although there is no requirement for a company to have such an agreement in place, salaries still needs to correspond with the level of a relevant collective union agreement.
This is reviewed during the permit application process and a statement from the relevant labour union is obtained. Should the union decline to provide a statement of the applicable employment conditions, the Swedish Migration Agency has the right to make an assessment of the salary level, based on statistics from SCB – Statistics Sweden.
Current legislation also includes a condition which states that an employee with a work permit may not earn less than SEK 13 000 per month. It is important to note, however, that this minimum amount is applicable for employees who, for example, do not work full-time.
Swedish companies have a long tradition of working with collective agreements as opposed to minimum wages, which is common in many other countries. This can potentially become a hurdle for companies employing foreign labour, as it might be difficult to get clear information on appropriate salary levels.
Here are a few points to bear in mind for the upcoming salary review season.
- Significant salary increases do not need to be reported to the Migration Agency
- It is important to ensure salaries remain above the current collective agreement level, if there for any reason is a wage reduction.
- Salary growth and development must be aligned with the current and relevant collective agreement.
- Delayed salary reviews or inadequte salary increases may result in a regulaton violation. Potential violations are examined by the The Swedish Migration Agency, in connection with permit extension applications. Depending on the severity of a violation, an application may be rejected and the employee be forced to leave the country.
Please do not hesitate to contact us for more information or with any questions you may have.
Your Human Entrance Team