Settlement of refugees

Those who are settled are former asylum seekers who have been granted a residence permit or resettlement refugees who have been granted a residence permit in Norway pursuant to an agreement with the UN High Commissioner for Refugees.

Refugees are settled by the municipalities

Refugees who need settlement assistance are to be offered housing in a municipality. The Directorate of Integration and Diversity (IMDi) cooperates with the municipalities regarding settlement.                                                  

Those who are settled are former asylum seekers who have been granted a residence permit or resettlement refugees who have been granted a residence permit in Norway pursuant to an agreement with the UN High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR).

Resettlement refugees are settled directly in the municipality when they arrive in Norway.

Unaccompanied minor refugees under the age of 15 years

The Norwegian Directorate for Children, Youth and Family Affairs is responsible for unaccompanied minor asylum seekers under the age of 15 years who arrive in Norway. These children are given housing and cared for in adapted care centres. When settling those who have been granted a residence permit, the Directorate of Integration and Diversity is responsible for obtaining municipal places for all unaccompanied refugees under 18 years of age, including the youngest ones. The Directorate for Children, Youth and Family Affairs, i.e. its regional offices, is responsible for specifically settling those who are under 15 years of age. The Directorate for Children, Youth and Family Affairs' main goal is to settle the children in the right municipality, with the right measures and within three months after the decision to grant them a residence permit. This means the municipality that meets the child's need for care and help in the best possible way, that takes the child's family relationships into account and that is suitable for the child's age.  

A national committee determines the settlement requirement

This committee determines the need to settle newly arrived refugees during the coming year and distributes the refugees among the counties. This distribution is based on the counties' populations, qualification services, housing markets and previous experience of settlement work, where the refugee wants to live and the work opportunities. The national committee is chaired by the Directorate of Integration and Diversity and includes representatives of the state and municipal sectors.

Rapid settlement

The goal of rapid settlement means that refugees are to be settled in a municipality within six months of being granted a residence permit. For unaccompanied children and young people, the goal is three months.

Trial scheme in Hordaland and Østfold

In 2015 and 2016, a trial scheme will be carried out in which the goal is increased and quicker settlement in the municipalities in these two counties. The trial involves the two county governor offices being responsible for motivating the two counties' municipalities to increase the number of settlement places when determining the number of refugees they can settle each year. The Directorate of Integration and Diversity will continue to be responsible for the actual settlement work, i.e. searching for places for refugees at a personal level.

Integration grant to the municipalities

The municipalities receive an integration grant if they settle refugees and persons who have been granted a residence permit on humanitarian grounds. In addition, the municipalities receive a grant for those who are given a residence permit as part of a family reunification with these groups - both those who come to Norway at the same time as the main person and those who are reunited with this person at a later date. The integration grant is to cover the municipalities' average additional expenses related to settling and integrating these persons during the settlement year and the next four years.