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Denmark: Employee rights

Updating author: Lise Lauridsen, Bech-Bruun
Original author: Yvonne Frederiksen, Norrbom Vinding

See the legal services provided by the authors of XpertHR International > Denmark, including any discounts/offers for subscribers.


  • There are various rules for employees' hours of work and there are particular restrictions for night workers. (See Hours of work)
  • Employees are entitled to rest breaks of a reasonable length if their working day is longer than six hours, and minimum daily and weekly rest periods. (See Rest breaks and rest periods)
  • Employees' weekly rest day should, as far as possible, be Sunday although there are exceptions for certain types of workers. (See Sunday work)
  • There are various rules regarding minimum paid annual leave for employees and when it may be taken. (See Holiday and holiday pay)
  • Pregnant employees are entitled to take pregnancy leave from four weeks before the expected date of childbirth and are required to take two weeks' maternity leave after the birth, following which they are entitled to take a further period of maternity leave. (See Pregnancy, maternity and adoption rights)
  • Parents are each entitled to take 32 weeks of parental leave per birth, usually in the period immediately after the birth/maternity leave, and, in addition, to parental leave, fathers are entitled to take two weeks of paternity leave. (See Parental leave and paternity leave)
  • Employees are entitled to take various types of other leave including leave to care for a seriously ill child or close relative who is suffering from a terminal illness. (See Other leave)
  • Employers must not treat part-time workers differently than comparable full-time employees solely on the grounds of working part time, unless such treatment is objectively justified. (See Part-time workers)
  • Employers must not treat fixed-term employees differently than a comparable employee on an open-ended contract solely on the grounds of having a fixed-term contract, unless such treatment is objectively justified. (See Fixed-term workers)
  • Legislation, which implements the Temporary Agency Work Directive (2008/104/EC), aims to ensure equal treatment of agency workers. (See Temporary agency workers)
  • Employers have various obligations in relation to remote workers. (See Remote workers)
  • Workers posted to work in Denmark from other countries are covered by various Danish employment laws. (See Posted workers)
  • Where a relevant transfer occurs, the employees of the transferor automatically become employees of the transferee, and retain all of their existing employment rights and obligations. (See Transfers of undertakings)
  • In the event of the employer's insolvency, employees' pay-related claims are given priority in the distribution of its assets. (See Insolvency of employer)
  • There is no requirement for an employer to adopt a formal disciplinary or grievance procedure, unless this is provided for in a collective bargaining agreement. (See Disciplinary and grievance procedures)
  • There are various rules regarding the processing of employees' personal data. (See Data and privacy protection)
  • Most employers (particularly those with 50 or more employees) are under a legal obligation to implement a whistleblowing policy. (See Whistleblowing)