For members


Reader question: How can I move to Norway to be with my adult children? 

Thinking of moving to Norway to be closer to your children? Depending on your situation, that may be easier said than done. Here’s what you need to know. 

Trolltunga, Norway
If you want to move to Norway to be with family, then you should be aware that there are a number of strict rules. Pictured is Trolltunga. Photo by Benjamin Davies on Unsplash

Question: My adult child lives in Norway, and I want to move to be closer to them. What are the rules? 

Do you have a burning question about Norway you want answering, or maybe there’s something you are just curious about? You can get in touch here, and The Local will do its best to answer your question for you! 

Norway’s immigration rules can be pretty confusing at the best of times. This can make it pretty daunting when wondering what the rules are if you want to move there to be closer to family. 

This is unless, of course, you are an EEA national, then you can move to, live and work in Norway freely, with the only real paperwork being registering with the police and getting an identification number

If you aren’t from the EEA, one of the main things you will need to consider is which permit to apply for.

There’s the family immigration residence card and skilled worker permit, which are both options we’ll go into detail on. 

However, before we delve into more detail, it’s worth noting that having a relative in Norway typically isn’t grounds to be granted a permit, and you’ll need to meet several tight requirements. 

Family immigration permit

Spouses, cohabitants, fiancées, children, parents and other family members of residents in Norway may be eligible to apply for family immigration or family reunification permits from the Norwegian Directorate of Immigration (UDI).

Before going into the rules, there are a few things you should know. First, family immigration permits refer to two people in the application process. These are the applicant (the person who wants to move to Norway) and the reference person (the person you are moving to Norway to be with). Secondly, there will typically be an application fee of 10,500 kroner.

Generally speaking, it is pretty difficult to move to Norway to be with a child over the age of 18. You will need to be over 60, not have a spouse or partner, and cannot have any parents, children or grandchildren in your home country.

Your child will also need to have a minimum income of at least 287,278 kroner per year and have not received financial assistance from NAV in the last 12 months. The applicant will also be subject to an ID check. 

A less permanent but more attainable solution could be a visitation permit.

READ MORE: What are the rules for moving to Norway to be with family

Skilled worker visa

To be granted a residence permit for work, you’ll most likely need to have been offered a job first, and the type of permit you apply for will depend on your line of work. 

You can qualify as a skilled worker if you have completed higher education or vocational training. A skilled worker must also have shown they have work experience in their specific field before applying for the skilled worker permit. 

Note that your job offer/contract must be for a full-time position for this type of permit. If it is for 80 percent of full-time hours, then it will be accepted. But anything less, and your application will be denied. If you are lucky, your employer will help with the application process. 

There will also be an application fee of 6,300 kroner to pay. You can find more detail on who is a skilled worker here

READ MORE: How to get a work permit in Norway

Child is an EEA national, but you aren’t 

If your child is an EEA citizen registered in Norway, you can also move to be with them. However, you must not be barred from entering the Schengen zone and be supported financially by your child. 

The reference person must have moved to Norway as an employee, be self-employed, or live with sufficient funds. In addition, the child will need to meet the registration requirements and be able to show that you can support both themselves and the parent. 

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For members


Why your Norwegian family immigration application may be rejected, and how to avoid it 

Applications for family residence permits in Norway can be long and arduous. These are the most common reasons why they are turned down and what you can do to avoid it. 

Why your Norwegian family immigration application may be rejected, and how to avoid it 

Last year, more than 15,000 people moved to Norway for family reasons. Of those, more than 4,000 were EEA citizens who registered with the police, while 10,197 permits for family immigration were granted. 

Residence permits for family reasons are generally issued to those from countries outside the European Economic Area or EEA (EU countries plus Iceland, Liechtenstein, and Norway), while those moving to Norway to be with family are required to register with the police as living in Norway.

Family immigration permits are issued based on the applicant’s relative being a Nordic citizen or having legal residence or asylum in Norway. The applicants are usually the partner or spouse, child or parent, sibling, or in some cases, another relative of someone living in Norway.

READ ALSO: How many people move to Norway for family reasons, and where do they come from?

However, not all applications for a residence permit are accepted, and as an application fee is involved, it would be handy to know the most common reasons why applicants aren’t granted residence to be with a family member, partner or spouse. 

The Norwegian Directorate of Immigration (UDI) has provided The Local with the most common reasons it turns down applications. 

Age requirements for the spouse or partner not being met

To move to Norway to be with a boyfriend, girlfriend, spouse, or fiancé, several requirements will need to be met. 

Generally, the reference person (the one living in Norway) will need to earn above a certain amount of money, plan on living together, and the relationship should be genuine. If you are not married or engaged, you will need to have lived together for at least two years. 

READ MORE: What are the rules for moving to Norway to be with a partner? 

In addition, the applicant and reference partner will need to be over 24 years old when applying. This applies regardless of whether you are married, engaged or live together. 

According to the UDI, the age requirements for spouses not being met is one of the most common reasons why applications for family immigration permits are turned down. 

Children do not meet the full criteria

As with all applications for residence in Norway, all the criteria outlined by the UDI must be met to be granted a permit. 

Children not meeting all the criteria needed to be with parents was also one of the more common stumbling blocks, according to the UDI. 

Applications for children to be with parents in Norway can be tricky, and a number of factors can affect the requirements. 

Typically, the child will need to undergo an identity check, and both parents must consent to the move if custody is shared, the reference person must be a Norwegian citizen or hold a valid residence permit. In addition, the parent must earn at least 300,988 kroner per year before taxes. The income from the year before must also meet this threshold. 

Parents must have also not received any help from NAV in the past 12 months either. 

If you do not meet these requirements, your application will be turned down. To read more about the criteria, you can click here.

Maintenance requirements for family members aren’t met 

Being a relative of someone living or working in Norway typically isn’t a sufficient enough reason to have a work permit application approved. A number of other requirements will need to be met, and the rules for those over 18 applying to live with relatives are much tighter than those moving to be with a relative under 18. 

Additionally, applications for relatives that aren’t the parent or child of the reference person are likely to be rejected. 

For those wishing to move to Norway to be with their family members, one of the most common issues is the maintenance or minimum income requirements being met. 

As with other residence applications, the reference person will need to earn 300,988 kroner per year before taxes. This threshold applies to all family applications. 

READ ALSO: What are the rules for moving to Norway to be with family?