What does permanent full-time position mean in Sweden? Does that mean it is a lifetime guaranty for the whole working life period? Or such a work is rare in Europe?

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    I'm Australian, I would be HIGHLY SURPRISED if permanent full-time means you are guaranteed a job until you die. The guarantee is you have a job until they no longer need the role, or until you under-perform or get fired. Sep 24, 2019 at 14:59
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    Full-time means full time aka more or less 40h / week in most countries, permanent means that it's not limited in time, it can last 4 months as well as 15 years as explained by Gregory Currie.So permanent full-time is just the combination.
    – user108322
    Sep 24, 2019 at 15:03
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    In most countries it is harder to fire a permanent employee than a casual one. But there is a chasm between that and a "guaranty for the whole working life". Sep 24, 2019 at 15:06
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    I don't understand the downvotes. I find this a very valid and precise questions. It could be maybe be phrased more open: "How hard is it to lose a 'permanent full-time position in Sweden"
    – Helena
    Sep 24, 2019 at 16:48
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    [a lifetime guaranty for the whole working life period] is rare in Europe? I don't think any place in the world guarantees that you have a job for life.
    – Brandin
    Sep 25, 2019 at 10:20

4 Answers 4


Full time mean 40 hours a week (unless you have a better ”kollektivavtal” a contract between the union and employer, in that case it might be a little bit less)

Permanent Job (in Swedish ”Fast anställning” ) means that there is no time limit on your employment (the official term is ”tillsvidare” meaning ongoing).

Unless you are badly missbehaving (in which case you might be fired, rare in sweden) the only way to lose a permanent job is if the company is reducing its workforce. If that happens a negotiation with the union takes place to protect the workers rights. If the layoffs continue despite this employers will be laide off in order of shortest employment time with that employer. This means that even if your role is made redundant you can remain with the company if there are other roles you qualify for that are filled by people who have been employed more recently than you.

Source, I live and work in Sweden


I would suggest read this


Looks like it is not for life, but pretty stable, depending on the company you work for

  • +1 thank you very much for the link, I'll read it.
    – Alireza
    Sep 25, 2019 at 5:49
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    I'd add that you are generally the "safest" in medium size companies. Startups are very volatile, but they do come in numbers, so it's more like the Danish situation (easy to lose a job, easy to get a new one). Medium-sized established companies are well-to-do and rarely fire people unless absolutely necessary. Large corporations (local and international) are more prone to layoffs, even on a yearly basis, and they often do sweeping motions with firing - hundreds at once. Sep 25, 2019 at 8:44

What does permanent full-time position mean in Sweden? Does that mean it is a lifetime guaranty for the whole working life period?

I strongly doubt it.

I am not from Sweden but the "permanent" term is not rare to see in Workplaces across the world, nor is the "full-time" term. My understanding of "permanent full-time position" is:

  • Permanent means that it's not a fixed-term contract. Some contracts are fixed-term, meaning that after a period of time (usually 6 months, or a year) the contract has to be renewed or not, point at which the employee could find themselves unemployed if it's not renewed. Permanent positions, on the contrary, do not "expire" and don't have to be renewed, and they are in place until the employee quits or is fired by any reason.

  • Full-time means exactly that. Each day the employee will have to work full working hours, which are usually 8 per day (40 per week). Contrary to, say, half-time jobs, which are around 4 hours per day.

Taking into consideration those points, we can see that a permanent full-time position is one that expects you to work 8 hours per day and that is not subject to a time expiration. The only way that such employee can end up unemployed is if they quit or if they are fired/laid off.

  • It kinda is life time given it's really hard to get rid of an employee in Sweden. Sep 25, 2019 at 2:17
  • This should not be the accepted answer as it ignores the labour laws in the EU. "fired by any reason" is simply not the case in the Sweden
    – FooTheBar
    Sep 25, 2019 at 6:59
  • @FooBar can you please enhance on that? Which laws are you talking about? It would be best if you provided an answer if you feel that there is another, better or different way
    – DarkCygnus
    Sep 25, 2019 at 8:07
  • @FooBar and DarkCygnus, let's not fuss over minor issues of wording. The answer clearly intends to say that permanent means "you work there until you don't". Would a change from "and they are in place until the employee quits or is fired by any reason" to "and they are in place until the employee quits or is fired" be OK with everyone?
    – AakashM
    Sep 25, 2019 at 9:04

Disclaimer: I have never lived or worked in Sweden but a little bit of googling made me believe it is similar to the Netherlands and Germany: http://www.nymanrudenstam.se/wp/wp-content/uploads/2016/02/Broschyr-General-Labour-Law.pdf

No, even in Europe a permanent contract doesn't mean that you cannot be dismissed, but Sweden like other European countries mandates that you cannot be let go without a reason and if you let go you have a minimum notice period that depends on how long you are with the company.

Valid reasons for dismissal usually are:
1.) You are misbehaving (e.g. acting inappropriately towards colleagues, or stealing from the company) or not doing your job
2.) Your job has become redundant and you cannot be retrained.

You should be pretty safe though, as long as you are working in a role that the company will rely on in the future, the company is healthy and you can keep your act together. And the longer you work for a company the harder it will be to get rid of you.

  • From And the longer you work for a company the harder it will be to get rid of you, do you mean by legal point of view or just because you have acquired so much responsibility in your own role that it is hard for the company to fire you?
    – Alireza
    Sep 25, 2019 at 5:49
  • @ALH legally, as you can see in the linked PDF. In case of redundancy the company will have to let go its oldest employee last, and it also has to give your longer notice, the longer you have been working.
    – Helena
    Sep 25, 2019 at 6:22
  • +1 I will read. Thank you very much for the PDF document
    – Alireza
    Sep 25, 2019 at 6:32
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    " if you let go you have a minimum notice period " That is not true for the examples you gave. "Stealing from the company" will remove you instantly from the company.
    – FooTheBar
    Sep 25, 2019 at 6:58

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