Are you comprised by the Danish social security rules?

The Danish Social Security System consists of services and benefits that provide economic security such as health insurance, family benefits, sickness and maternity benefits, pension, unemployment benefits, ATP (Danish labor market supplementary pension) and industrial injury insurance.

When deciding whether a person staying in Denmark, can get social benefits, its relevant to see on two different groups of individuals:

  • Nationals of the EU, Iceland, Liechtenstein, Norway or Switzerland, and persons covered by the Withdrawal Agreement concluded between the EU and the United Kingdom
  • Nationals of non-EU countries

Only for non-EU Nationals

If you are registered with CPR, you have access to Public Health services in Denmark. Please note that you can only register as a resident in Denmark (and get a CPR number) if your stay in Denmark is longer than three months.
Whether you are covered by other social benefits, depends on whether you can meet the requirements for being eligible for the specific benefit.
You can find more information about the requirements for the different services and benefits on

It will require a permanent residence permit to be able to get Unemployment Insurance benefits ("dagpenge") as a non-EU national. This is due to the fact that you will need to be available for the labor market, which mean you can take any job with one day notice.

Some kinds of residence-/work permit you may have been granted by SIRI, which in principle gives you right to take any job from day to day, can be conditional on that you do not receive unemployment benefits ("dagpenge"). See for example the 3 year working permit for graduates.

Even though Regulation (EU) No 1231/2010 Since 1 January 2011 have extended the social security cover in EU to nationals of non-EU countries (third-country nationals and family members) legally resident in the EU and in a cross-border situation, its important to mention that this does not apply to Denmark. So as a non-EU national coming to Denmark from another EU-country you are not covered by danish social security according to the EU-rules.

A British citizen moving to Denmark after 31 December 2020 is as a starting point regarded as a Non-EU National in relation to the right to social benefits in Denmark.
However according to the "UK - EU Trade and Cooperation Agreement agreed on 24 December 2020", British citizens will still be covered by coordination (like the EU-coordination rules) for some kind of social benefits, including unemployment benefits. Regarding the benefits covered by the agreement, British citizens will still be subject to the social security rules of one country at a time. Typically where the work is undertaken. A british citizen coming to Denmark after January 2021 for work, should join a danish A-kasse.

Only for EU-nationals

As a citizen of an EU/EEA country who works in Denmark, you are entitled to the same social benefits as Danish citizens.

The EU-rules on social security coordination do not replace national systems with a single European one. All countries are free to decide who is to be insured under their legislation, which benefits are granted and under what conditions.

So also EU-citizens need to meet the requirements for each specific social benefit in Denmark, read more at

However, for EU-nationals its often easier to get access to the social benefits in Denmark (compared to a non-EU citizen). This is due to principle of "Aggregation" in the EU-coordination regulation. This principle guarantees that previous periods of insurance, work or residence in other countries are taken into account in the calculation of benefits.

EU-citizens do not need work-permit to be able to work in Denmark, which means that they can take any job with one day notice, and hence be able to meet the availability requirement for unemployment benefits.

A person who receives unemployment benefits and other security benefits that temporarily replace work income from Denmark is also covered by Danish legislation on social security.

In which EU-country an EU-national is covered by social security depends on:

  • your work situation (employed, self-employed, unemployed, posted abroad, working across the border from where you live, and so on)
  • country of residence. This is the country where you usually live or where your "centre of interest" is located - not your nationality.

When working or living abroad, you will have social security cover by either your home country or the host country, but always only one of the countries. The decision on which country's legislation applies to you will be made by the social security institutions. You cannot choose your self in which country to be covered.
We recommend that you try to contact your municipality of residence or Udbetaling Denmark to get guidance/information about the process.

If you are unemployed and come to Denmark to look for job please see this article about Social security cover abroad.

If you are student in Denmark and soon will graduate, you should know that the completed education in it self can give you right to receive Unemployment benefits. Please read our special sections/guidance here:
See our guide for students.
See our guide for graduates.

A British citizen residing or working in Denmark before 31 December 2020 is an EU citizen in relation to the right to social benefits in Denmark.

Examples for working EU-nationals

You only work in Denmark
The point of departure is that a person who physically exclusively performs his/her job functions in Denmark is comprised by Danish social security rules. This is the case regardless of whether you live in another EU Member State, whether the employer is domiciled in another EU Member State or where tax is paid.

You should register with the social security system in Denmark. This means:
- apply for EU residence document
- You must present your EU residence document to your municipality of residence to be given a CPR number (and health insurance card and the like)

With a CPR-number you will also be able to become member in an A-kasse.

You work in Denmark, but return to your EU-home country at least once a week
In this situation you are a cross-border worker. You will be covered by danish social security rules, however regarding Unemployment benefits special rules apply.
You must be a member of a danish A-kasse, but in case of wholly unemployment you should register with the employment services and claim unemployment benefits in your country of residence in accordance with the legislation there.
You must be transferred to the unemployment insurance system of your country of residence, but the insurance period/work period from Denmark will be included, when the Unemployment Insurance Authority in your EU-home country decide whether you qualify for unemployment benefits.

Read more here:
Life in Denmark, information for cross-border commuters.
FAQ for cross border work, by FTFa.

You are posted to Denmark
If you are sent by your employer (or yourself, if you are self-employed) to work in Denmark for a maximum of 24 months, you will remain insured in your country of origin.

You work in more than one EU-country
If you work in both Denmark and your country of residence, you will keep social security in your country of residence, if you perform at least 25% of your working activity in your country of residence.
This also means that if you live in Demark and work in several EU/EEA countries or Switzerland and 25 percent of you work is performed in Denmark, then you are covered by Danish Social Security.
If you work in two countries, you should contact the relevant authority in your country of residence for a clarification of where you have social security.

Special cases where you live in Denmark, but work in more than one EU-country:

If you... You are covered...
are employed but have no substantial
activity in Denmark
where your employer's head office or business is located
work for two employers with head offices
in different countries,
one in Denmark and one
outside Denmark
but have no substantial activity in
where your employer's head office or place of business is located
outside Denmark
work for two employers with head offices
in different countries outside Denmark
but have no substantial
activity in Denmark
in Denmark
Work for one or several Danish employers
but have no substantial
activity in Denmark
in Denmark
are self-employed and have no substantial
activity in Denmark
where the centre of interest of your activities is located
are employed in one country and carry
out self-employed work in another
in the country where you are employed

If you do not live in Denmark and work in more than one EU-country:

If you... You are covered...
are only employed by a Danish employer, but have no substantial
activity in Denmark
in Denmark
are employed by a Danish employer but have another job with another employer in your country of residence,
and have no substantial activity in
in Denmark

PD A1 document

A "PD A1 document" can be used to prove that you are covered by social security in Denmark or another EU-country.

PD A1 document is issued by the social security institution in the EU country where you recide. In Denmark this is "Udbetaling Danmark".

If you have a PD A1 document saying that you (or your employer) pay social contributions in Denmark, it also means that a danish A-kasse are obliged to accept you as member in the A-kasse.

Read more here:
Read about different kind of social security in Denmark, from Nordic co-operation
Information about Social security cover when working abroad, from Life in Denmark
Your social security rights in Denmark (from European Commission),

Contact: Udbetaling Danmark, Social security cover


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.