From the UDI Annual Report 2010:

The new Immigration Act makes it easier to be granted permanent residence (previously called a ‘settlement permit’) in Norway.

Previously, an applicant had to have resided in Norway for at least three years on the same type of permit (for example a work permit). Applicants can now be granted a permanent residence permit after a total period of legal residence of three years, even if the grounds for residence differ, for instance first as a family immigrant and then as a specialist. This can explain an increase of 13 per cent in 2010 from the previous year both in the number of applications and in the number of approvals. A total of 13,800 people were granted permanent residence.

The UDI processed more old and difficult applications, for example several cases where we decided to revoke a family immigration permit because we found it probable that a marriage was a marriage of convenience. In such cases, we reject the application for permanent residence. We also rejected a relatively large number of applications because the applicant had not documented that the requirement for completed tuition in the Norwegian language and social studies had been met. The UDI rejected a total of 810 applications for permanent residence, but some whose applications were rejected had their previous permit extended.

http://www.udi.no/Norwegian-Directorate-of-Immigration/Annual-Report-2010/Work-and-residence/Easier-to-be-granted-a-permanent-residence-permit/ 

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