Denmark work permit

Denmark work permit
peach illusgreen illus
Employ contractors and employees in 160+ countries
Employ and pay

global talent

starting at $199

Get started
peach illusgreen illus
Employ contractors and employees in 160+ countries
Employ and pay
global talent

starting at

Table of Content

Carrot icon

Building a remote team?

Employ exceptional talent, anywhere, anytime!

Thank you! Your submission has been received!
Oops! Something went wrong while submitting the form.

Companies that are growing internationally might be looking to hire remote employees who live in the Kingdom of Denmark. These include those who are native Danes as well as those who are visiting or intend to move there. Foreign workers who are not from the European Union (EU), the European Economic Area (EEA: EU countries plus Liechtenstein, Norway, and Iceland), or Switzerland must have a Denmark work permit and residence permit to live and work legally in Denmark.

This comprehensive guide will include information on:

  • Types of Denmark working visas
  • Denmark work visa requirements
  • Denmark temporary and permanent residence
  • How to submit a Denmark work visa application or residence permit application

By the end of the guide, you'll also know how to hire remote employees and contractors using an employer of record, so you don't have to establish a local legal entity in Denmark. An employer of record can help with work visa applications, payroll, onboarding employees, and other services to help your company expand internationally.

Types of work visas and permits in Denmark

There are several different categories of Denmark work permits with different work visa schemes. Examples of visa schemes relevant to remote employment in Denmark include the fast track scheme, the Pay Limit scheme, and the Positive Lists scheme.

Here are all the types of Denmark work visa schemes:

  • Fast track: For applicants with an employment contract with a SIRI-certified (Danish Agency for International Recruitment and Integration) Danish company. This is the way to start a job quickly with a flexible permit.
  • Pay Limit scheme: For high-earning applicants who make at least DKK 465,000 per year.
  • Positive Lists scheme: For applicants with an employment contract for a job that is on the current list of highly qualified and skilled professions that are in short supply in Denmark.
  • Researcher: For jobs at public or private research facilities.
  • Guest researcher: For those who receive an invitation to be a guest researcher in Denmark.
  • Employed Ph.D.: For employment in a study program at a Danish educational institute.
  • Special individual qualifications: For jobs that are unique to the applicant, such as an artist, chef, or athlete.
  • Establishment Card: For those seeking employment after completing a higher education degree.
  • Volunteer: For unpaid humanitarian or social workers in Denmark.
  • Sideline employment: For side jobs in addition to regular full-time employment.
  • Adaptation and training employment: For those who need medical authorization for adaptation and training.
  • Work permit for accompanying families: For family members of residence permit-holders who need work permits
  • Trainee: For limited work as a trainee, for educational or training purposes.
  • Certification: For Danish companies that want to use the fast-track scheme.
  • Start-up: For those wishing to start a business in Denmark with innovative ideas.
  • Authorization: For doctors, dentists, or nurses who want to work in Denmark but do not have Danish authorization.
  • ESS scheme: For workers at the European Spallation Source research facility in Sweden who wish to live in Denmark.
  • Labor Market attachment: For family members who have lost residence status.
  • Herdsmen and farm managers: For jobs in the agricultural sector as herdsmen and farm managers.
  • Drill rigs and other mobile workplaces: For people working on drilling rigs, ships, and vessels that enter Denmark temporarily.

The duration of the Denmark work permit is up to four years for indefinite contracts or otherwise for the duration of the contract plus six months.

Temporary residency

Employees must have a temporary resident permit to be able to live in Denmark. The duration of a temporary resident permit is one to two years, depending on the type of permit, such as employment or study.

Permanent residency

Some workers might want to move permanently to Denmark. An employee who wants to relocate to Denmark should apply for a permanent residence permit once they qualify for permanent residency.

Permanent residency allows foreign employees to live and work in Denmark indefinitely. The permanent resident permit offers the following benefits:

  • Free healthcare
  • Free education
  • Free childcare services
  • No need to renew it as with a temporary residence permit

Individuals are generally eligible for permanent residency after eight years of temporary residency but must fulfill certain other requirements and be able to submit supporting documentation when necessary. Pensioners and disabled people may be exempt from some requirements.

One platform to grow your global team

Hire and pay talent globally, the
hassle-free way

Talk to an Expert

Requirements for Denmark work visa and permits

If your company is expanding internationally and hiring employees in Denmark and other countries, you must always comply with immigration laws, including the following Denmark visa requirements.

The right to work in Denmark is based partially on citizenship. Employees who have citizenship in the EU, EEA, or Switzerland can work in Denmark without a permit. These citizens still have to register with the Danish Agency for International Recruitment and Integration (SIRI).

Visa scheme applicants must apply for the visa, submit the supporting documentation, and pay the visa fee.

The following documents are required for visa scheme applications:

  • Visa application
  • Passport with photos
  • Proof of a health insurance policy
  • Visa payment receipt
  • Power of attorney form, if the employer is applying for the employee
  • Qualifications, including diplomas or degrees
  • Employment contract

Temporary residency

To be eligible for a temporary resident permit, employees must fulfill the following residency requirements. The applicant must:

  • Be at least 18 years of age
  • Have accommodation in Denmark
  • Be able to financially support themselves for their stay in Denmark
  • Have a signed employment contract, if the applicant has a work visa
  • Have travel insurance
  • Have a clean police record
  • Be proficient in the Danish language

Permanent residency

Applicants for permanent residency must:

  • Be over the age of 18
  • Be able to support themselves financially during their stay in the country and make a declaration of residence
  • Have lived in Denmark for at least eight years
  • Be currently employed or self-employed
  • Have been employed or self-employed for the prior three years and six months
  • Have a clean police record
  • Not have any overdue debts
  • Pass a Danish language test 2
  • Pay a fee of DKK 10,330 (approx. US$1,500)

To be eligible for permanent residency after only four years, applicants must:

  • Pass a Danish language test 3
  • Have been employed for the past four years
  • Earn a higher income than the average in Denmark
  • Display active citizenship or pass the active citizen exam

How to apply for a Denmark work visa and permit

Making sure your employees have all their proper work permits and visas should be part of your global expansion strategy. Ensuring compliance with immigration laws will ensure that your employees can work in Denmark legally, avoiding potential compliance problems and legal issues.

Visa scheme applications

Applications for work visa schemes can be easily submitted online via the Danish Immigration Service government website. If applying from abroad, applications can also be submitted at a Danish embassy or diplomatic mission.

Here are the steps to apply for a visa scheme:

  1. Choosing a visa scheme online
  2. Create a case order ID on the website
  3. Pay the work visa fee
  4. Submit supporting documents, including the employment contract and proof of qualifications
  5. Fill in and submit the application

Residency permits

Applications for a temporary or permanent residence permit can be submitted at a SIRI location or the Danish Immigration Service.

The steps to apply for a residence permit are:

  1. Create a case order number on the SIRI website
  2. Pay the processing fee
  3. Submit the supporting documentation
  4. Fill in and submit the application
  5. Record biometrics, such as fingerprints and an ID photo

Denmark visa application processing time

The processing times differ depending on the type of visa and residence permit:

  • Work visa: approximately 30 days
  • Temporary residence permit: three months, after which a card is issued in two to three weeks
  • Permanent residence permit: 10 months

While waiting for visa applications to be processed, your company can continue to hire and onboard employees with the help of a global employer of record. An employer of record can help submit applications for work visas for your employees and make sure they fulfill all the immigration requirements in Denmark and other countries around the world.

Before hiring an employee in a foreign country, you usually need to establish a legal entity in the country you intend to hire in. An employer of record can further save you time and valuable resources because you won't need to create a legal entity to hire people in Denmark.

Planning to hire or work in Denmark? Here’s how Skuad can help

Your business can hire a remote team in Denmark with the help of an employer of record like Skuad. In addition to hiring employees and contractors in Denmark, Skuad can help in your company's international expansion to any of the other nations we operate in. With Skuad, you can hire employees and independent contractors in more than 160 countries and pay them in more than 100 local currencies.

An employer of record in Denmark can:

  • Write legally compliant contracts and hire workers on your behalf
  • Process payroll and payroll taxes, including Danish employer contributions
  • Ensure compliance with local labor laws and immigration laws
  • Ensure that your employees fulfill Denmark visa requirements
  • Submit Denmark visa applications for your employees
  • Obtain Denmark work permits/employment visas for your employees

Skuad can serve as your global employer of record and assist you in hiring internationally so you can focus on your business's primary strategies. Let an employer of record hire employees on your behalf almost anywhere in the world. Contact us today for a demo.


Can foreigners work in Denmark?

The right to work in Denmark is based partially on citizenship. Employees who have citizenship in the EU, EEA, or Switzerland can work in Denmark without the need for a special work permit.

Foreigners from other countries can work in Denmark if they have the appropriate Denmark work permit in the form of a Denmark working visa and residence permit. Applicants can apply for a Denmark working visa if they fulfill all the Denmark work visa requirements. These individuals also need a Danish temporary residence permit to be able to live in the country.

Can US citizens work in Denmark?

US citizens can work in Denmark if they obtain a working visa and residence permit just like the citizens of most other countries. US citizens can apply for a work visa and temporary resident permit. After living in Denmark for at least eight years and fulfilling other requirements, these individuals can apply for a permanent resident permit.

Any employee planning to relocate to Denmark permanently can apply for Danish citizenship once they've been a permanent resident for at least two years.

How long does it take to get a Danish work permit?

If your application is complete and you have submitted all of the appropriate supporting documentation, the processing time for a working visa is around 30 days. It takes approximately three months for the immigration authorities to grant temporary residence once an application has been submitted. You should receive a temporary resident card around two to three weeks after being granted temporary residence.

How much is a work permit in Denmark?

The work visa fees in Denmark depend on the type of visa. There is no fee for work permits for family members, sideline employment permits, or permits for training purposes. For all other types of work permits, the fee is DKK 4,405 (approx. US$635).

Can you work in Denmark if you only speak English?

It's possible to work in Denmark if you only speak English. Some employers in Denmark may require you to learn and speak the Danish language, but there are many job opportunities at companies that use English as their working language. Also, about 86% of Danes can speak English as their second language, so you should be able to communicate with most people in Denmark speaking only English.

Building a remote team?

Employ exceptional talent, anywhere, anytime!

Thank you! Your submission has been received!
Oops! Something went wrong while submitting the form.

Skuad is the best solution to hire and expand globally.

Skuad makes building globally distributed teams, quick and hassle-free.

Request demo
start hiring