HRsolution » COUNTRIES » Sweden

Overview of Sweden

Sweden is located in the North of Europe between Finland and Norway and is part of Scandinavia. In terms of area, it is the fifth biggest country in Europe. With 25% VAT, Sweden has one of the highest VATs in the world. Sweden is a constitutional monarchy. Sweden has a population of 10.23 million people and its capital is Stockholm. It is a highly developed country and has a high living standard. It has the one of the worlds highest life expectancies and one of the lowest birth rates. When doing business in Sweden, ensure one is punctual to appointments. At work, dressing casually is normal but for business appointments one dresses more formally.

Currency of Sweden

  • Swedish Crowns

Health Insurance and the Social Security system of Sweden

Healthcare in Sweden is mandatory for all residents. It is decentralised, which means that the responsibility lays with the regional and/or local councils. Healthcare is paid for by employers, employees and taxes. There is a small fee associated with many services unless one is 16 or younger or qualifies as a vulnerable person.

The following is the average cost for services in Sweden:

  • Average cost of an emergency room visit: 300 kr (£30, US$38, and AU$47.5)

  • Average cost of a doctor’s visit: 200 kr (£20, US$25, and AU$31)

  • Dental Healthcare is free for all residents up to age 23. From age 24 onwards, it is subsidised by the state.

Employer cost of Sweden

The cost for an employer to hire someone in Sweden is a plus of 31.42% to the gross salary.

Salary and bonuses of Sweden

Regular employees are paid once a month on the 25th.

Bonuses are not paid as a requirement but can be agreed upon for reaching requirements.

Public Holidays in Sweden

In Sweden, there are 11 public holidays.

  • January 1st – New Years Day
  • January 6th – Ephiphany
  • Good Friday
  • Easter Monday
  • May 1st – Labour Day
  • 39 days after Easter – Assumption of Mary
  • June 6th – National Day
  • The Saturday during the period 20–26 June – Midsummer Day
  • The Saturday during the period 31 October–6 November – All Saints Day
  • December 25th – Christmas
  • December 26th – 2nd Day of Christmas

Working Hours in Sweden

The regular work week in Sweden is 40 hours.

The regular work day is 8:30/9:00am until 5pm with an hour lunch between 11:30am and 1:30pm.

As an employee, one is not allowed to work more than 50 hours overtime in a month or more than 200 hours in a year. Overtime is usually paid at a rate between 50-100% of the regular salary.

Vacation in Sweden

In Sweden, one receives a minimum of 25 days of vacation a year. Most of this vacation is taken during the summer as a ‘main vacation’ between June and August.

Sick Leave in Sweden

If one is sick in Sweden, one receives a deduction of 20% of one’s regular pay while sick. After being away for longer than 7 days, a medical certificate is required. During the first 14 days of an illness, the employee receives the sick pay directly from the employer. After day 14, the employee receives sickness cash benefit (sjukpenning) form the Swedish Social Insurance Agency. In order to receive this sick pay, one has to have worked for at least 1 month or continuously for 14 days.

Termination/Severance in Sweden

When terminating an employee, the termination notice has to be delivered personally and if that is not possible, it has to be sent to his last known address. Is should include the information about why the employee is being terminated and what procedure the employee must follow if he wishes to dispute the termination.

A termination must be based on objective grounds, either redundancy or personal reasons. Personal reasons are usually in the form of misconduct or gross violation of agreed upon duties.

The notice period for a termination is one month for employees who have been with the company 2 years or less. It extends to 2 months if the employee has been with the company for 2 to 4 years. If an employee has been with the company for 6 to 8 years, it extends to 4 months.

There are no rules regarding severance pay needing to be paid. However, an employee may be entitled to severance pay through an employment agreement or a separation agreement. Normally, an employee is financially compensated through a settlement at the end of the employment.