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Kvinna med barn i famnen

Parental leave

In accordance with the Parental Leave Act, you are entitled to leave when your child is born (or an adopted child arrives) irrespective of your job type or form of employment.

During this leave you may apply for parental benefits from the Social Insurance Agency (Försäkringskassan), a government agency.

  • Both parents jointly receive a total of 480 days of parental benefits.
  • 60 days are reserved for each parent, the remaining 260 days may be distributed as preferred.
  • For 90 of these days the payment level is SEK 180 per day (lowest level).
  • For 390 days, payment is 80 percent of sickness benefit-generating income (SGI).
  • SGI is an amount calculated by the Social Insurance Agency based on your income and forms the basis for how much is paid to you in parental benefits.

As a PhD student with a taxable income, you are covered by the state parental insurance, which means that you receive 80 per cent of your salary during parental leave and that the time you spend on parental leave extends the period of your PhD position when you return to work.

If you are studying, a doctoral candidate on a scholarship or have no or a very low income, then benefits are SEK 250 per day for the SGI payment days. Read more at Försäkringskassan.


Additional parental benefits

If you work at a workplace that is party to a collective agreement, you are in most cases entitled to additional parental benefits. Sometimes you also receive extra benefits when you are home taking care of ill children (see below). This additional benefit has been negotiated by Naturvetarna and other trade unions in a collective agreement.

If you are employed by the state at, for example, a university or a university college there is an agreement on parental benefits that provide 90 percent of your salary for 360 days if you take out parental benefits from the Social Insurance Agency at the lowest level. As a PhD student, you will receive supplementary parental leave benefits as a result of the collective agreement for state employees, and you have the same rights as all other employees.


Temporary parental benefits for care of ill children (VAB)

If you have to stay home from work to take care of your child who is ill, this is called VAB days. You will be paid temporary parental benefits. Payment is just under 80 percent of your salary. You make the application for VAB benefits when the child has recovered and you are back at work.

If you work for the state there is also a topping up of Social Insurance Agency benefits in your collective agreement if you earn more that the basic amount ceiling. Read more at Försäkringskassan.


Children's allowance

If you live in Sweden and you have children, you will receive financial assistance in the form of children's allowance from the Social Insurance Agency. This is paid out once a month for each child up to the age of 16. You do not have to make a special application but do contact the Social Insurance Agency to notify them that you have children if you have just moved to Sweden. Read more at Försäkringskassan. 

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