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Press release from Ministry of Justice

Age assessment earlier in asylum process


The Government has submitted a bill to the Riksdag proposing amendments to the Aliens Act that require the Swedish Migration Agency to assess a person’s age earlier in the asylum process than is the case today.

"The proposal requiring earlier age assessment in the asylum process is important from both a child rights perspective and an economic perspective," says Minister for Justice and Migration Morgan Johansson.

The purpose of the proposal is to prevent adult asylum seekers being placed in accommodation that is intended for children and to ensure that unaccompanied minors receive the resources that have been set aside for them. In the bill, the Government therefore proposes that:

  • the Swedish Migration Agency, as soon as possible after an application for asylum, conducts an age assessment and takes a temporary decision on the age of the unaccompanied minor if there is reason to question whether the applicant is under 18 but it is not obvious that he or she is an adult;
  • the applicant be offered a medical age assessment before the Swedish Migration Agency takes a temporary decision that entails that he or she is assessed to be an adult; and
  • it be possible to appeal the temporary decision on age to a court.

It is proposed that the legislative amendments enter into force on 1 May 2017.