Unemployment benefits

Benefit rates and duration

The rate - how much can you get?
Your Unemployment benefits ("Dagpenge") may not exceed 90 per cent of your previous salary and can never be higher than the maximum rate.
As of January 1, 2023 the maximum rate is DKK 19,728 per month for a full-time insured member.

Effective from 1 May 2023, it will be possible for many A-kasse members to get a supplement to the unemployment benefits for the first 3 months.
In this way the maximum benefit rate can be increased from DKK 19,728 up to DKK 23,449 in the first 3 months. Read more in this article.

The basis for calculating how much you can get in benefits is your best 12 months with income within the last 24 months.
If you have not had 12 months with income in the last 24 months, your A-kasse will calculate your benefits on basis of all months with income within the 24-month period.

Different rates and rules apply to new graduates. See our special guide for graduates.

Period of unemployment benefits and possibility of extension of period
As a general rule, a member has a right to unemployment benefits for a maximum of two years in total within a 3 year period.

Benefits are paid according to a fixed number of hours. Unemployment benefits will be paid per calendar month and is granted for up to 160.33 hours a month.
You only use your unemployment benefits for the hours you are actually paid.

It is possible to extend the period for which you can get unemployment benefits up to 3 years. This is done by working.
Every 1 hour of work gives you 2 hours more of benefits in the last end. Or in other words - one month's work gives two extra months of unemployment benefit.
The A-kasse keeps track of your working hours in your employment account (in Danish "Beskæftigelseskontoen").
Your employment account should be available when you are logged in to either Jobnet.dk or your A-kasse's member pages.

Please note: no matter which A-kasse you join, you always get the same amount in unemployment benefits.

The right to unemployment benefits ceases two years before you are entitled to pension.

Reductions in dagpenge

Work will reduce your amount of benefits
The amount of dagpenge you receive is reduced if you pick up any freelance or other type of part-time employment while unemployed.
You should be aware that even volunteer work can in some circumstances result in reduction in the benefits (dagpenge) you receive.
However it is seen more often these days, when volunteer work has become so popular that the A-kasse will accept it and still pay you full benefits.
BUT you must check your A-kasse’s rules to find out these particular details.
And you should always tell your A-kasse about any kind of jobs you get, also volunteer work.

Reduction due to quarantine and extensive use of the unemployment benefit system
When you receive unemployment benefits, there is a risk of 1 day quarantine and 1 month shortening of the unemployment benefit period.

  • 1 day quarantine
    When you are unemployed, the A-kasse will investigate every 4 months how many working hours you have had during the past four months.
    If you have been working for 148 hours or less, you will get 1 day quarantine, which means that you will receive 7.4 hours less paid in the subsequent payment of unemployment benefits. The A-kasse must not count working hours from work with wage subsidies ("løntilskud") or business practice ("virksomhedspraktik").
  • 1 month shortening of unemployment benefit period
    The member's unemployment benefit period will be shortened if the person concerned has received unemployment benefits for a total of 7,696 hours for full-time insured in the last 96 months. This is the same as 4 years with dagpenge within a period of 8 years.
    The shortening is done by 160.33 hours for a full-time insured.

Main topics about A-kasse

Transferring periods of work and insurance from another EEA CountryAs an EU citizen you can transfer acquired rights from Unemployment Insurance between EU contries. Be aware that there are some requirements and deadlines that are important to meet. And you have to use a PD U1 Form. Read more here..
Transferring unemployment benefitsUnder certain conditions you can go to another EU country to look for work and continue to receive your unemployment benefits from the country where you became unemployed. And you have to use a PD U2 Form. Read more here..
Unemployment benefits ("dagpenge")Remember you have to be member of an A-kasse for 1 year before you can claim Unemployment benefits ("dagpenge"). And you must meet the income-requirement. Read more here..
International graduatesGraduates in Denmark can get Unemployment benefits from the first day after graduation, if they have been member as student of an A-kasse for at least 1 year. Read more...
Residence CardIf you are a non-EU citizen you must have a residence Card which allows you to take any job with one day notice. This is because you must be available for the labor market for being eligible for unemployment benefits ("dagpenge").
Membership fee and taxYou will automatically get a deduction in your tax for your fee to the A-kasse and trade union. There is no ceiling on the amount you can get a deduction for when it comes to contributions to A-kasse, whereas you can get a maximum deduction of DKK 6,000 for a trade union.