Foreign students in Norway

If you are studying in Norway for less than a year, you will not, as a general rule, become a member of the Norwegian National Insurance Scheme.

When are you regarded as a student?

You are regarded as a student when you are staying in Norway

  • to attend school or university
  • and have no income from work

Students from Nordic countries

You are a member of the Norwegian National Insurance Scheme if you are registered in the National Population Register in Norway. If you are not a member you are nevertheless entitled to health services under the National Insurance Act and you do not have to verify it with a European Health Insurance Card.

Students from EEA countries or Switzerland

The general rule is that you do not become a member of the Norwegian National Insurance Scheme. If you are a member of social security in your home country while studying in Norway, you are entitled emergency and necessary treatment under Norwegian legislation.

If you are not entitled to a European Health Insurance Card from your home country, you must have other insurance to cover any medical expenses you might incur in Norway.

Students from countries outside the EEA

You will not become a member of the Norwegian National Insurance Scheme automatically, but you can apply for voluntary membership if you

  • attend school or university in Norway for less than one year, and
  • Have a residence permit

Voluntary membership entitles you to have health services on an equal basis with other Norwegian residents.

Coverage for health services

Persons coming from an EEA-country or Switzerland are entitled to health services on an equal basis with other Norwegian residents, principally what you have paid for doctor, hospital, and medications. For example, in Norway it gives you free admission to hospital and having to pay patient’s charge for medications.

You have to verify your entitlement with your European Health Insurance Card.

Persons coming from other countries must prove that they can pay for treatment with private insurance.

What does it cost?

You do not have to pay national insurance contributions when

  • You have no income from work 
  • You are not a member of the Norwegian National Insurance Scheme

Entitlement to different benefits

Persons who are not members of the Norwegian National Insurance Scheme have no claim on any benefits from NAV.

If you are a voluntary member, you may be entitled to benefits if you fulfil certain conditions. The benefits you might be entitled to are limited to the insurance section you are member of.