Working abroad – job searching abroad

You must reside in Denmark to be eligible for benefits.

However, there are three ways in which you can receive benefits abroad:

  • If you go there and back on the same day
  • If you stay for up to five days for job interviews abroad. Both the unemployment insurance fund and the Jobcenter must be given notice, and you are required to send us documentation showing that you are going for a job interview
  • If you are an EEA citizen, you can be paid benefits from Denmark for up to three months while you look for work in another EEA country 

The rules are complicated, and therefore, we recommend that you contact us well before you are leaving.

If you want to look for work and stay in another EEA country, you can be paid benefits from Denmark for up to 3 months.

To be eligible for benefits, you must meet certain conditions:

  • You must be a citizen of an EEA country
  • You must be a member of CA throughout the period you are staying abroad
  • You must be unemployed and eligible for benefits
  • Your application for unemployment benefits abroad must be approved by CA before you leave. You can find the form here
  • You must reside in Denmark and be registered with the Jobcenter at least four weeks prior to your departure*

*If you are a citizen of the EEA country in which you intend to look for work, then it is sufficient for you to have been registered with the Jobcenter for 1 week. You may also be granted an exemption and be allowed a shorter registration period if you are going for a job interview or you are moving together with your partner.

When you are leaving

You need to leave on the exact day you have applied for. On the day you leave Denmark, you must cancel your registration at www.jobnet.dk. You must register with your local job center in the relevant country within 7 calendar days (i.e. Saturday and Sunday included).

With our letter on approval of your EEA benefits, we have sent you some documents that you need to bring for the registration with the local job center.

While residing in the relevant EEA country, you must follow the local job search rules. This means that you do not need to register your job searches in your job log or attending meetings with CA or the Jobcenter in Denmark. However, you are still required to complete your benefit form every month.

If I do not find work within the 3-month period?

If you do not find work, you must return to Denmark in time for you to be able to register as unemployed with your Jobcenter before the end of the 3-month period. That means that you must register with the Jobcenter in Denmark on or before the last day of the approved period.

The date will appear clearly from your approval letter.

In case of failure to meet the deadline, you will not receive benefits in Denmark until you have been employed for at least 296 hours in a period of 12 weeks.

If you find work abroad, it is a good idea to contact us regardless of whether it is in an EEA country or in another country.

This applies to you if you have been looking for and found work in an EEA country, and if you are going abroad to start a new job without having received unemployment benefits for a preceding period.

If you find work in an EEA country or in Switzerland

As a general rule, you will be covered by the national unemployment insurance, if you find work in an EEA country or in Switzerland. That means that you need to cancel your registration with CA from the date you are covered by the insurance of the other country. Your pay slip will usually show that you pay into the national insurance.

In Finland and Sweden, you can also choose to register with an unemployment insurance fund, but in all other countries, the basic insurance is paid through taxes. For this reason, you need to send us a copy of your first pay slip once you receive it so that we can cancel your CA membership retrospectively. Any excess membership fees will be returned to you as promptly as possible.

As a result of the cancellation of your CA membership, you are not required to pay early retirement pension contributions while working in another EEA country or in Switzerland. If you are already paying into the early retirement pension scheme, you can, on the other hand, pay early retirement pension contributions in arrears once you return to Denmark. But please note that you may have to pay a large amount of money.

Besides, there are various rules on the duration of your unemployment insurance membership that you should know about.  In particular, if you stay abroad for a long time, or you consider retiring early shortly after you return to Denmark.

Here you can read more about the early retirement rules

Please note! If you turn 30 while working in another EEA country, you must have paid to the early retirement scheme for at least 1 day before you leave if you want to maintain your entitlement to early retirement benefits. If you have not paid this 1 day, you will be barred from ever making use of the early retirement scheme again. It is therefore very important that you contact us before you leave.

If the foreign authorities ask you for a so-called PD U1 form, then first you have to send us the EEA4 form requesting a PD U1. Then we will prepare a PD U1 form for you on that basis.

You need to return to Denmark no more than 8 weeks from your final day of work, or from expiry of your unemployment insurance abroad. You are also required to join the unemployment insurance fund within the same deadline. You will not automatically join the unemployment insurance fund again

Join CA

You must request a PD U1 document from the authorities in the country in which you have worked. The document must be submitted to us via My CA. It is imperative that we receive this PD U1 form. Otherwise we will not be able to transfer the periods of your membership you have accrued abroad.

If you have not brought a PD U1 form with you home, we may exceptionally apply for one for you. To do so we need you to fill in and send us an EØS6 form, but it may take a long time to obtain the form.

It is also important that you keep your pay slips, your employment contract and other documentation for your employment as they may be needed for you to earn benefits for a new period when you return.

If you have not been a member of an unemployment insurance fund for a period of more than 5 years, you are also required to begin work in Denmark within the period of 8 weeks from the end of your unemployment insurance abroad.

To have the periods of your unemployment insurance membership abroad transferred, you must have worked at least 296 hours in the subsequent 12-week period.  It is a requirement that the work is carried out in Denmark. When this requirement is met, you’ll be eligible for benefits again. Your benefit rate will be determined on the basis of the work you perform in Denmark after you return.

If for a period you are posted by your Danish employer to work in another EEA country or in Switzerland, you can continue to be a CA member.

It is a condition that you obtain a decision from Udbetaling Danmark (Public Benefits Administration) stating that you can keep your social security in Denmark. At the same time, you will also be covered by Danish legislation in terms of public health insurance, hospital treatments, benefits during illness or maternity or paternity leave, etc.

Read more at Udbetaling Danmark

When you work outside the EU/EEA , you can continue to be a CA member and earn seniority. Then you’ll be able to apply for benefits immediately after you return to Denmark. You will not be eligible for benefits directly unless you retain your membership.

It is important that you keep your contracts and pay slips as we need them to decide whether you qualify for benefits.