Unemployment Insurance

As opposed to all other forms of social security in Denmark, unemployment insurance is voluntary.

This means you are not automatically insured against unemployment.

You can take out unemployment insurance with an unemployment insurance fund (a-kasse), which are private associations related to the trade unions and other professional organizations.

It is an important point that you do not need to be a member of a trade union in order to become a member of an unemployment insurance fund.

You can become a member of an unemployment insurance fund if you are between 18 and until 2 years before you reach your old age pension age and reside in Denmark (or another EU/EEA country and work in Denmark). You can become a member either:

  • As an employee, within a profession covered by the unemployment insurance fund.
  • As a business owner or by helping run a business owned by your spouse.
  • After having completed a business related education of at least 18 months in duration and applied for membership of the unemployment insurance fund no later than two weeks after completion of your studies.

A list of all unemployment insurance funds can be found here (in Danish only).

Further information about unemployment insurance can be found here

Unemployment benefits

If you have signed up for unemployment insurance at an unemployment insurance fund, and have been a member for at least one year you are entitled to unemployment benefits. It is, however, a prerequisite that you have worked at least 52 weeks within the past three years.