Working part-time while unemployed
When you are unemployed, deductions are made from the benefits for work, income, holidays, sickness, etc. Read more about the rules below.
Calculating deductions for work
If you work during an unemployment period, your benefit payments are reduced, whether the work is paid or not. But there are special rules for voluntary unpaid work – read more about voluntary unpaid work here.
For a month in which you are fully unemployed, you receive benefits for 160.33 hours of unemployment. But if you work and get paid for 40 hours inside a month, you will receive benefits for 120.33 hours.
Note that the deduction of benefits depends on how your employers report your type of work and income to the tax authorities’ income register.
- Type A income by paid hours
Your benefits are reduced by the hours you work and are paid for.
- Type A income with no hourly payment, type B income and fees
The deduction is calculated using a conversion rate, currently set to 251,99. If, for example, your fees are 5,000 kr. inside a month, your benefits are reduced by 20.20 hours (= 5,000 kr. divided by 247,53). The conversion rate is adjusted annually.
Minimum payout rule
As a full-time insured member, you get benefits for 160.33 hours a month before any deduction, regardless of the month in question.
If you report deductions of more than 145.53 hours because of work or other activities, no benefits are paid for that month, since the minimum payout is for 14.8 hours a month.
If you are sick
You cannot receive benefits from CA while you are sick – because you cannot or must not be available for the labour market during times of sickness. Instead, you can claim sickness benefits from your municipality. The amount paid out is the same as you get from us – the only difference is that the payment of sickness benefits is administered by the municipality .
On the benefit form you must enter “S” for every single day of sickness. If you are sick for more than 14 days, you can no longer be registered as active with the job centre. You therefore need to deregister.
How to deregister:
- Contact us if you become sick
- We fill a form with information on the type of benefits we last paid out to you, etc.
- You add various information to the form and then forward it to your municipality
- When you are well again, you must register with your job centre again
We advise you to report sickness as soon as possible, as otherwise you may have problems with the payout of sickness benefits from the municipality.
When you are on holiday, you are not available for the labour market. As a consequence, you cannot get benefits.
If you have earned the right to holiday pay from an employer, you can claim holiday allowance for the days on which you are on holiday. If you have earned holiday benefits, you can claim benefits from CA for the holidays. In both cases, you must write “F” (for ferie) against each of the days that you are on holiday.
If you find part-time work, either in an employed or a self-employed position, you will typically be able to claim supplementary benefits.
30-week limit for all types of part-time work
You can claim supplementary benefits for up to 30 weeks within a period of 104 weeks. Note that your right to benefits extends to the end of the month in which you use up week no. 30.
Your right to supplementary benefits applies to all part-time work; that is, both as a wage earner and as a self-employed person. Weeks used working in your own business before 1 October 2018 do not use up your 30-week right to supplementary benefits, while weeks over the last 2 years in which you had paid work and claimed benefits are included.
When the 30 weeks expire
You can earn the right to a new 30-week period or extend the 30-week period by working. If the period expires, you must choose between continuing work without claiming benefits or resigning from your paid job (or closing down your business). To avoid a waiting period, always contact CA before resigning from your paid job.
You must be available for full-time work
To gain the right to supplementary benefits you must basically honour the same conditions as if you had no work at all:
- You must be registered with www.jobnet.dk as someone looking for a full-time job, even if you work part-time
- Each week you must apply for at least two full time positions in Denmark - at least one of them must have been advertised
- You must also be able to take on a full-time job offered by the Jobcenter with a day’s notice. You can only take on full-time work with a day’s notice if you are able to resign from your part-time paid job with a day’s notice
The right to a new period with supplementary benefits
If you have had a certain amount of work, you can gain rights to a new 30-week period with supplementary benefits.
- If you are paid per month you must have had 6 months in which you were paid for more than 146 hours per month
- If you are paid per week, you must have had 26 weeks in which you were paid for more than 34 hours per week
- If you are paid every other week, you must have had at least 13 (thirteen) 14-day periods in which you were paid for more than 68 hours per period
We collect information about your paid work in the tax authorities’ income register. The reports must concern:
- 12 contiguous months AND
- the time after you last gained the right to 30 (new) weeks with supplementary benefits
You can also earn the right to a new 30-week period with supplementary benefits if you have not claimed benefits in a calendar year in which your total earnings from all A- and B-income plus profits from running your own business were at least DKK 243.996 (2021 figure).
Working hours used to extend your right to supplementary benefits cannot be used to earn new benefit rights.
The right to extend the period with supplementary benefits
If you have had a certain amount of work, but not enough to entitle you to a new 30-week period with supplementary benefits (see above), you may be able to extend the period by up to 12 weeks Extensions are made for 4 weeks at a time, that is, 4, 8 or 12 weeks.
We collect information on your paid work in the tax authorities’ income register, going back 12 months from the expiry of the 30 weeks.
- If you are paid by the month, the period can be extended by 4 weeks for every month in which you were paid for more than 146 hours.
- If you are paid by the week, the period can be extended with 4 weeks for every 4 weeks in which you were paid for more than 34 hours per week
- If you are paid every other week, the period can be extended by 4 weeks for every 2 (two) 14-day period in which you were paid for more than 68 hours per period
The period can also be extended by 4 weeks for every month in which you did not claim benefits but worked in your own business. However, this applies only if the business was registered in the central business register (CVR) at least 6 months ahead of the time of expiry of your right to supplementary benefits.
Working hours already used to extend your right to supplementary benefits cannot be used to gain the right to a new 30-week period.
Especially about part-time work as a wage earner
If you have a part-time paid job with a term of notice, you are entitled to supplementary benefits only if your employer has signed a release certificate (frigørelsesattest in Danish).
Send in the release certificate within 5 weeks
We must receive your release certificate (frigørelsesattest in Danish) no later than 5 weeks after starting work. The first day on the job is included in the 5-week deadline. This means that if you start working on a Wednesday, we must have the certificate no later than by Tuesday 5 weeks later. If we do not receive the certificate in time, you cannot claim benefits before the day we receive the certificate.
What is a release certificate?
A release certificate (frigørelsesattest in Danish) is your employer’s signed confirmation that you can resign from your job with a day’s notice to start in another job with longer hours – in spite of your term of notice.
Employer compensation days (G-days) lead to deductions
When you become unemployed, your employer is obliged to pay employer compensation days, or G-days, for your first 2 days of unemployment. The compensation is equal to your benefits.
If you were hired without a term of notice, your employer must pay G-days to you for every time you have worked 74 hours over 4 weeks.
If your employment has a term of notice, you are entitled to G-days when you become unemployed, unless it was you who gave notice.
As a rule, your employer must pay G-days if you have worked at least 74 hours over the last 4 weeks.
Learn more about G-days here (Information in Danish)
Working means benefit deductions
The hours you have worked and are paid for are counterbalanced in your benefits no matter the time of the day or week in which the work was performed.
You can claim supplementary benefits only if you were unemployed for at least 14.8 hours during a month.
If your employer reports only your income but not your working hours to the tax authorities' income register, the deductions in your benefits is determined by converting your wage into hours via a conversion factor of DKK 251,99 (2021 figure). This applies for example if you work as a teacher or lecturer.
Especially about part-time self-employed work
There are a number of opportunities for starting a part-time business while you are unemployed. However, we recommend that you contact us before starting an independent activity. This applies in particular if you have previously run your own business, as starting a new independent activity may have implications for your future benefit rights.
Learn more about rules on running your own business as a secondary occupation (information in Danish).
Working in your own business means benefit deductions
On your benefit form you must inform us about all hours that you spend running your own business as a secondary occupation, as they lead to deductions in your benefits – no matter the time of day or week that you worked. That is, evening and weekend work also results in benefit deductions. You must report all hours that you spend on your business, including those you do not invoice your customers (administration, transport, etc.). The work results in hour by hour deductions in your benefits. The deductions are made even if your business is running at a loss!
You must continue to look for full-time employed work, and be able to take on a full-time paid job with a day’s notice. Work in your own business does not excuse you from meetings or similar at CA or the Jobcenter.
How you use up your 30-week supplementary benefit rights
The table shows what weeks count towards exhausting your right to supplementary benefits if you have activities either as a wage earner or a self-employed person while you claim benefits:
|Work and other hours without benefit rights||Weeks with 37 hours or more||Weeks with less than 37 hours||Weeks with 0 hours|
Supplementary benefits based on paid work
|Not included||Included||Not included|
Supplementary benefits based on own business activity