To receive benefits, it is a condition that you have residence in Denmark. But under certain conditions you can receive benefits while you are abroad. If you find a job abroad, you should also take note of the consequences of changing unemployment fund - and the residence requirement.
If you plan to seek work abroad, please contact us. The regulations in this area are very complex, with many pitfalls. See the most important rules below.
There are basically three ways of taking your unemployment benefits with you abroad:
- Leaving to return on the same day
- Being away for up to 5 days, documenting to CA and your local job centre before departure that you are leaving for a specific job interview
- Leaving for up to 3 months to seek work in another EU or EEA country (Norway, Iceland, Liechtenstein) or Switzerland
Which EEA countries can I take my benefits to?
You can claim EEA benefits in the following countries:
Austria, Belgium, Bulgaria, Croatia, Cyprus, the Czech Republic, Denmark, Estonia, Finland, France, Germany, Greece, Hungary, Ireland, Iceland, Italy, Latvia, Liechtenstein, Lithuania, Luxembourg, Malta, the Netherlands, Norway, Poland, Portugal, Romania, Slovakia, Slovenia, Spain, Sweden, Switzerland and the United Kingdom.
These overseas territories are furthermore covered by the scheme:
The Azores (Portugal), the Balearic Islands (mainly Mallorca and Ibiza), Ceuta, the Canary Islands (Spain), French Guyana, Gibraltar (UK), Guadeloupe, the Hebrides, Madeira, Melilla (Spain) and Réunion (France).
To claim benefits from another EEA country, you must:
- be an EEA national
- be a member of CA while abroad
- be fully unemployed (if you are in temporary employment, please contact us to learn about possible exceptions)
- be entitled to benefits when leaving
- have been registered with your local job centre for at least 4 weeks before departure (a few exceptions apply, for example if you are a national of the destination country or if you have been invited to a job interview)
- apply for a PD U2 certificate before leaving Denmark
At the same time as you fulfil the requirement of full unemployment in the 4-week period, you must be fully available to the labour market.
Please note that that all work, even for a few hours, holiday and sickness for more than 3 days will interrupt the 4-week period. One day’s work thus forces you to start over again with a requirement of 4 weeks’ unemployment.
Claiming benefits abroad
Benefits abroad are paid out in the same way as in Denmark. This means that you must continue completing the electronic benefit form at the end of each month. To get benefits abroad you must register with the employment exchange (job centre) in your host country within 7 days of the starting date indicated on the PD U2 certificate. It is important that you observe this deadline, as otherwise you will receive benefits only from the day that you register with the job centre.
How to apply?
You need to fill in a special application form via our online self-service.
We recommend that you do the paper work well ahead of leaving. Please use the PD U2 certificate to apply for Danish benefits while you are abroad. We must receive your application no later than 2 weeks (but not earlier than 4 weeks) before the day of departure. No exceptions are granted.
If you fail to find work while claiming EEA unemployment benefits
If you do not succeed in finding work abroad, you must be back in Denmark to re-register as unemployed with your job centre before the expiry of the 3-month period. You must register with the job centre in Denmark no later than the last day in the period stated in the certificate. If the deadline is overrun, you are not entitled to benefits in Denmark before you have worked for at least 296 hours within a 12-week period.
Working in the EEA or Switzerland
As a main rule, you will be covered by local unemployment insurance if you find work in the EU, the EEA (Norway, Iceland and Liechtenstein) or in Switzerland. In such cases, your CA membership must be discontinued.
It will appear from your pay slip that you pay into the national insurance. (In Finland and Sweden you may also choose to join an unemployment fund, but in all other countries, only a tax-financed basic insurance is offered). You must therefore send us a copy when you receive your first payslip, after which we will cancel your membership with retroactive effect and return the overpaid membership contribution to you.
Due to the residence requirement we strongly advice you to keep any information documenting your stay.
As a further consequence, your deregistration means that you cannot contribute to the early retirement scheme while you are working in the EEA or Switzerland. However, you may choose to pay the arrears on the early retirement contribution on your return to Denmark. Please note that this may be a considerable sum. In relation to seniority, there are furthermore a number of rules that you should take note of, in particular if you are away for long time or if you plan to take early retirement briefly after your return to Denmark. To learn more about the early retirement rules, please click here (the information is in Danish).
Please note that if you turn 30 while working in another EEA country, you must have paid contributions to the early retirement scheme for at least 1 day before leaving. Otherwise, your entitlement to take early retirement will be lost. It is therefore extremely important that you contact us before leaving.
Returning to Denmark after working in EEA or Switzerland
The following applies only if you apply in writing for CA membership within 8 weeks of the expiry of your unemployment insurance in the other country.
You must be able to document your insurance in the other EEA country. You do this by asking for a PD U1 certificate from the authorities of the country in question. It is an absolute requirement for the transfer of your seniority from abroad that we receive the PD U1.
You also need to save your payslips, your contract and other documentation for your hire, as they may entitle you to new unemployment benefit rights on your return.
If your deregistration from CA or another Danish unemployment fund spans more than 5 years, you must furthermore start work in Denmark within the mentioned 8-week deadline of the expiry of your insurance abroad. To have your seniority transferred from your unemployment insurance abroad, you must fulfil a work requirement of at least 296 hours within the following 12 weeks.
If you meet this work requirement, you will be entitled to benefits with retroactive effect, beginning from the day these conditions are met: you have returned to Denmark, are registered with CA and registered as unemployed with the job centre.
Posting in the EEA or Switzerland
If you are temporarily posted for a Danish employer in the EEA or Switzerland, you can continue your CA membership on condition that Udbetaling Danmark grants you continued coverage by Danish social security regulations. You will furthermore be covered by Danish regulations on health insurance, hospital treatment, benefits during sickness, parental leave and similar.
Work and posting outside the EEA and Switzerland
If you find work outside the EEA (the EU countries, Norway, Iceland, Liechtenstein and Switzerland), your CA membership can continue without restrictions. Your benefit rights rest on continued membership.
Be aware that your right to benefits depends on whether or not you meet the residence requirement.
In case you need to apply for benefits after returning from work abroad, you must ensure documentation of working hours and your salary, month by month. You should therefore save all your payslips. You may also consider asking your foreign employer to testify in writing your employment period and the extent of your work and pay for every month.