EEA cases are defined as all cases that involve EEA nationals or their families. Among other things, we consider cases where the UDI has either expelled or rejected an EEA national. We also consider cases where the UDI has rejected an application for permanent right of residence.

The most common reason for the expulsion of EEA nationals is that they have committed a criminal offence. The most common reason for refusing EEA nationals or their families permanent right of residence is that they have not had five years of continuous lawful residence in Norway.

What do we consider?

Everyone who is a national of an EU or EFTA state are considered to be EEA nationals.

EEA cases are defined as all cases that involve EEA nationals or their families. EEA nationals have different rights and are subject to different regulations than nationals of countries outside the EEA area. Among other things, EEA nationals have more freedom of movement than non-EEA nationals. EEA nationals are covered by an EU directive called the Citizens Rights Directive. This is implemented in the Norwegian Immigration Act, which forms the basis for our consideration of cases. We consider cases concerning expulsion, rejection, revocation and permanent right of residence.

In most of the cases we consider, the EEA national has committed a criminal offence and has either been issued a penalty notice or sentenced to imprisonment. Examples of such criminal offences include crimes of gain, violence, drug offences or sexual offences.

Two conditions must be met in order for us to expel an EEA national. Considerations of public order or safety must indicate that he/she should be expelled. This condition will normally be met as long as a criminal offence has been committed. In addition, there is a condition that the EEA national poses a threat to the fundamental interests of society. This means that we must make a future-oriented assessment of whether there is a risk that the EEA national will commit further criminal offences. If such a risk exists, we only refrain from expelling the person in question in exceptional circumstances.

We also consider the consequences expulsion will have for the EEA national. If he/she has a family in Norway, we also consider the consequences for the family. These consequences are weighed against how serious the EEA national's crime is, and whether there is a risk that he/she will commit new criminal offences. This is called a proportionality assessment.

We reverse a few cases. In most of the cases we reverse, we do not believe that there is a risk of the EEA national committing new criminal offences. We also reverse some cases if we believe that the EEA national's connection to Norway carries so much weight that he/she should nevertheless not be expelled.

Permanent right of residence is an enhanced right that EEA nationals and their family members can be granted after five years of continuous lawful residence in Norway. Each year, we consider cases where the applications of EEA nationals have been rejected because they have not had five years of continuous lawful residence in Norway.

To be regarded as having had lawful residence in Norway, an EEA national must have been an employee, self-employed person, service provider, had sufficient funds or been a student. It is not enough to just have stayed in Norway. We consider many cases where the EEA national has stayed in Norway without lawful residence. In most of the cases we reject, the EEA national has not worked enough to be regarded as an employee pursuant to the regulations.

We reject many EEA nationals and their family members who are staying in Norway without having a right to stay here. People are rejected for many different reasons. The EEA national's family member may not have been sufficiently provided for in the home country, or the marriage between an EEA national and the family member may be a pro forma marriage (marriage of convenience). Another reason for rejecting an EEA national is if he/she has not had lawful residence in Norway. To be regarded as having had lawful residence in Norway, an EEA national must have been an employee, self-employed person, service provider, had sufficient funds or been a student. It is not enough to just have stayed in Norway.

UNE does not reverse many decisions. In some cases, we reverse a decision because we have received new documentation that the UDI did not have, or because our assessment of the case differs from the UDI's assessment. We have reversed some expulsion cases because we believe there is no risk of the EEA national committing new crimes. In some expulsion cases, we have attached more importance to the best interests of the child than to the crimes that have been committed. We have also reversed some expulsion cases where the EEA national or the family member can document that they have lawful residence in Norway when we make our decision.

The EEA regulations grant EEA nationals and their families certain rights. For example, more is required for an EEA national to be expelled than for nationals of countries outside the EEA area.

If an EEA national is granted permanent right of residence in Norway, he/she will be given more rights in Norway. Among other things, EEA nationals are no longer required to be an employee, self-employed person, service provider, have sufficient funds or be a student in order to stay in Norway.

The same rights apply to the EEA national's family members.

If your application for permanent right of residence has been rejected, you will not be given the enhanced right such residence entails. If your stay is lawful, you can nevertheless stay in Norway. To be regarded as having had lawful residence in Norway, you must be an employee, self-employed person, service provider, had sufficient funds or been a student. It is not enough to just have stayed in Norway.

If it is the EEA national's family member who applies for permanent right of residence, the EEA national must document that he/she has had right of residence in Norway, i.e. continuous lawful residence for five years. This is because the family member's rights are derived from the EEA national's rights.

Yes, they can. The most common reasons for revoking rights is when an EEA national has provided incorrect information or withheld information of material importance.

Yes, EEA nationals and their family members can be expelled. Read more about this on the UDI's website (external link).