Permanent Residency in Norway - 2024 Local Relocation Guide

How to Obtain a Residence Permit in Norway

Updated on Wednesday 22nd May 2024

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A residence permit in Norway is usually obtained by people who have sufficient qualification to find work in this country. With one of the lowest rates in unemployment the Norwegian government makes all it takes to integrate foreign nationals who intend to move in this country.

Our law firm in Norway is ready to assist foreign investors and workers in the process of application for a residence permit in Norway
 Quick Facts  
  Residence permit types

Temporary and permanent residence permits

Time needed to obtain the temporary residence permit

Approx. 8 weeks

Temporary residence permit validity

 1 to 3 years
Documents for obtaining temporary residence

Valid passport, application form, proof of accommodation, recent photos, proof of reason to relocate

Mandatory registrations with state authorities (i.e. with the population/municipality register) Registration with the local police office in the city of residence within one week from arrival
Dependents can join the temporary permit holder 


Temporary or permanent residency for investment purposes


Minimum temporary residence before applying for permanent residence 3 years
Documents for obtaining permanent residence Proof of income, proof that the applicant has not benefitted from social assistance, good command of Norwegian
Naturalization requirements  Living in Norway for 7 years
Citizenship after permanent residence Living in Norway for 10 years, out of which 7 years must have been spent here
 Special requirements for EU citizens (if any) EU and EEA citizens must register with the local police office if they intend to stay in Norway for more than 3 months. 

 Access to residency through employment (YES/NO)

 Yes, employment is one of the means to obtain Norwegian residency.

 Requirements to obtain residency through employment

- having a labor contract,

- having secured the minimum wage applicable at a national level

Availability of spouse visa (YES/NO)   Yes, it is possible to apply for spouse visas for foreign citizens lawfully married to Norwegian nationals who plan to live with their Norwegian spouses in this country.
  Sponsorship requirements for family members (if any)

 No, however, the Norwegian resident must have a suitable place to stay and a minimum income to support the incoming family member.

 Permanent residency qualification requirements

 - regular renewal of the temporary residence card,

- not leaving the country for more than 7 months in the 3 year mandatory stay. 

 Language exam

Yes, people aged 16 to 64 must pass a language exam to be granted a permanent residence card. 

Easiest way to obtain permanent residency 

 Business setup or employment

 Why move to Norway

- access to some of the best healthcare and education systems in the world,

- competitive labor market with good salaries,

- great business environment,

- Norway is one of the most advanced economies in Europe.

 Support in applying for a residence permit (YES/NO)   Yes, we can help you apply for residency in Norway.
 Assistance in immigrating to Norway through other means (YES/NO)

Yes, we are at your disposal with other immigration services, as well. 


Who is required to apply for a residence permit in Norway?

A Norwegian residence permit is required for the following categories of applicants in 2024:
  • citizens of a country that is not a part of the European Union (EU) or the European Economic Area (EEA);
  • people who intend to stay in Norway for a long period of time;
  • It is also possible to live and work in Norway without a residence permit if you are from the EU or EEA. In this case, if you plan to stay longer than 90 days, you must register with the local police office.
Our immigration lawyers in Norway are at your service if you need support in drafting the paperwork related to moving here. We also offer assistance if you meet the requirements for permanent residency in Norway and decide to apply for it.

Types of residence permits in Norway in 2024

A residence permit in Norway can be granted either for temporary or permanent stay in this country. A permanent residence permit in Norway allows you to live and work in this state indefinitely and it also protects foreign nationals against expulsion. The conditions to apply for this type of permit are a minimum stay of three years in the country in legal conditions, good knowledge of the language and a list of the travels in and from Norway during the past three years. 
According to the laws on immigration to Norway a foreign national who has a relative in this country can apply for a residence permit on this ground. This type of permit covers family immigration and offers to people from outside Norway the possibility to join their relatives in this state.
Students must comply with specific requirements for the obtaining of a residence permit. For periods longer than three months, students can apply for the permit and they are allowed as well to get employed for a maximum of 20 hours per week. 
Our attorneys in Norway can give you further details on the residence permit types and ways of obtaining them. We can also assist in obtaining permanent residency in Norway in 2024.

List of requirements for obtaining a residence permit in Norway

When starting an application for a residence permit with the help of our immigration lawyers in Norway, the applicant needs to prepare a specific documentation containing the following documents:
A recent passport photograph;
Photocopies of all the pages of the passport which contain stamps or visas;
Declaration concerning travels done in the last three years (for permanent residence permits);
Certificate proving your command of the Norwegian language;
Documentation on your previous permit (if there is the case).
Immigration to Norway is one of the main services provided by our lawyers. From temporary to long-term residence permits, our specialists can help you secure your right to live here legally. Provided that you meet the requirements, you can also rely on us for support in applying for citizenship when the time comes.

Types of temporary residence permits in Norway

One of the best ways of moving to Norway in 2024 is by first obtaining a temporary residence permit. Fortunately, this option is quite flexible, as there are several types of purposes under which it can be obtained.
Temporary residence permits are divided into:
  • work visas that can be employed for living and working in Norway;
  • student visas that enable you to live and study here;
  • family visas available for relocating to Norway and living with family members established here.
You can apply for residency in Norway if you meet certain requirements. In most cases, similar conditions apply for citizens from non-EU countries. For this purpose, you must intend to stay in Norway for a longer period of time. Also, if you were born in the EU or EEA, you do not require a residence permit.
Each type of permit has its particularities that also enable immigration to Norway on a permanent basis. However, to obtain permanent residency in Norway, you must meet the minimum living criteria which is 3 years.

Conditions to obtain a residence permit in Norway


As mentioned earlier, each type of residence permit comes with its own requirements. Briefly, here are the main aspects to consider:
  • if you are relocating for employment, you must be employed by a Norwegian company and have a minimum wage;
  • if you are relocating as a student, you must be accepted into a Norwegian university and have the means to support yourself while living there;
  • if you come with a family reunion visa, you must be a close relative (spouse, partner, or child) of Norwegian resident who and is able to support you financially.
In terms of documents, various papers need to be prepared. For this purpose, you can rely on our immigration lawyers in Norway.

Procedure to obtain permanent residency in Norway in 2024

If you have lived in Norway for 3 years or more, you can apply for a permanent residence permit.
Here are the main conditions to satisfy:
  • in the previous 3 years, you cannot have spent more than 3 months without a valid residence permit;
  • you must have not left the country for more than 7 months in the previous 3 years;
  • if you are aged between 16 and 64, you must pass an exam on social studies and the Norwegian language.
With respect to the procedure you need to complete to acquire permanent residency in Norway, here are the main steps:
  • draft the necessary paperwork;
  • complete online application form;
  • pay the residence permit fee;
Depending on the city you live in, you need to file the paperwork at the service center for foreign employees or the local police department for residency permits and protection.
According to recent statistics:
  • in the last 10 years, the number of Norwegian citizens with foreign descent has increased substantially;
  • at the level of 2022, there were around 1.4 million Norwegians with foreign ancestry living here;
  • at least 291,705 citizens had at least one foreign parent;
  • 205, 819 citizens were born from two parents with foreign origin.
  • at the beginning of 2024, the population of Norway was 5,497,905, according to Worldometer;
  • Norway as a nation represents 0.07% of the global population;
  • In terms of population, Norway is ranked 119th out of all the countries;
  • the density of person/km is 15 persons per sqkm or 39 people per sqm;
  • Norway has a total surface of 365,268 sqm;
  • 8.60 % of the population lives in cities (4,706,745 in 2023)
  • the median age of the population is 39.8 years.


If you are interested in immigration to Norway, let our specialists help you. 
You must let the authorities know that you have moved here if you want to stay for longer than 6 months. You must schedule a personal encounter with a tax office and go through an ID check. It is crucial that everyone in your family attend the private meeting at the tax office if you are migrating to Norway together. You must bring some supporting papers, such as an ID card, employment contract, etc. You will receive a Norwegian identity number once you are officially registered as a resident of Norway. Also, in some countries, you are required to inform the national register that you have relocated to another Nordic nation.
Please feel free to contact our Norwegian lawyers who can help you prepare your application for immigration in Norway. If you decide to apply for permanent residency in Norway, you can address our lawyers.