NORWAY – Residence Permit for Specialists Route Closed from 15 January 2013
Effective 15 January 2013, the residence permit for specialists route into Norway will be closed to any new applicants. Existing holders of residence permits for specialists will be permitted to remain in Norway and renew their permits, provided they continue to meet the eligibility criteria.
Residence Permits for Specialists
The residence permit for specialists was a process reserved for applicants who were paid at least NOK500,000 per annum (roughly, 66,000EUR or 85,000USD). The scheme closes with effect from tomorrow, 15 January 2013. The reason given by the Norwegian Directorate of Immigration is that “the scheme has not been used as intended and that it has been abused.”
Renewals for Specialists
Provided existing holders of residence permits for specialists still meet the eligibility criteria, it will be possible for them to remain in Norway and to renew their residence permits.
The closure of the Specialist route means that most applications for non-EEA (European Economic Area) national applicants will fall under the Residence Permit for Skilled Workers route. This process is reserved for applicants who have relevant, specialist expertise directly related to the position to be carried out in Norway.
The Skilled Worker route is also subject to a minimum salary level. If the position requires an academic education and is not covered by a collective agreement or pay scale, the applicant must be paid in accordance with the collective agreement for Norwegian state employees, unless it is documented that other conditions are normal for the occupation and place concerned.
This means that if the applicant has completed higher academic education, for example holds a Master’s degree, the pay must be at least salary grade 47 in the pay scale for Norwegian state employees, currently NOK 396.900 per year. For lower-level academic education, for example a Bachelor’s degree, salary grade 42 in the pay scale for Norwegian state employees (currently NOK 368.000 per year)is the minimum pay.
- Note that the Residence Permit for Specialists route for Norway has been closed, effective 15 January 2013
- If you have questions about alternative immigration processes for Norway, please contact us, or our partners in Norway, Oslo Relocation, directly.