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Grants from the Swedish Arts Grants Committee – taxes and social security

What do I need to consider when I receive a grant?

Helena Shutrick

Grants and project funding can be a major source of income for professional artists. It is not always obvious how they should be treated with regard to our tax and social security systems. Here’s what you need to know.

Grants can be taxable or tax-exempt

There are two types of grants:

  • Tax-exempt grants, often called one-off grants. The grantor does not deduct preliminary tax and does not pay employer’s social security contributions. The grant recipients do not report the grant in their income tax returns.
  • Taxable grants, often called long-term grants. These include the long-term working grants awarded by the Swedish Arts Grants Committee and Swedish Authors’ Fund.

Conditions for grants to be considered tax-exempt

The following three conditions must be met for a grant to be considered tax-exempt:

  • The grant may not be a substitute for any work or other performance for the grant provider (i.e. no counter-performance).
  • The grant must not be paid periodically, but must instead be a one-off grant (however, educational grants may be paid periodically).
  • The grant must not be similar to a pension.

The Swedish Arts Grants Committee’s one- and two-year working grants are tax-exempt. On the other hand, multi-year grants (long-term working grants) awarded by the Swedish Arts Grants Committee and Swedish Authors’ Fund are taxable.

Other funding organisations

The Swedish Arts Grants Committee is one of several funding organisations for arts and culture that awards grants and project funding to artists. View our list of other funding organisations.

Taxes, tax returns and social security

Professional artists often have different types of income. Since many social benefits are designed on the basis of permanent employment, understanding taxes and benefits can be tricky. Click to learn about what applies to you in terms of taxes, tax returns, unemployment insurance, pension, housing allowances, housing supplements and more.

Report your project grant as income

Click to learn more about how to report a project grant from the Swedish Arts Grants Committee in your tax return.