Denmark Employment Policy Changes

Denmark made some significant changes to its labor law in 2020. The changes include amendments to policies regarding holiday laws, paid leaves, and employee data protection, among others. The introduction of the Danish Holiday Act, though, is the most significant change out of all. Here we discuss the major 2020 Danish labor law changes in detail.

Danish Holiday Act
The new holiday act completely changes the way Danish employees obtain and earn leaves. Since January 1st, 2019, the law has been in its transition phase and will become fully effective from September 1st, 2020. The new Act introduces the following changes:

  • Employees will now earn concurrent holidays and will be entitled to utilize them on the go. They can earn up to 2.08 days per month and utilize them each month or at the end of the year
  • Employees are entitled to receive up to 10 weeks of paid annual leaves during the transition year. (however, the transition scheme will ensure that employees can still only take up to five weeks of paid holiday in the transition year)
  • Employees can also take up to 3 weeks of consecutive leave within the main holiday season that extends from May 1st to September 30th
  • Holidays accrued in the transition phase as per the old holiday act will be carried forward to the first four-month of next year

Extension of Paternity Leave
Keeping in line with the European Parliament and the policies for European Union’s Member States, the Danish legislation has also made amendments to the parental leave. As per the law, fathers are entitled to a leave of 2 consecutive weeks within 14 weeks after delivery.

As per the new law, they can extend their parental leave to a total of 2 months post-delivery. In case of adoption, both parents can take up to 4 weeks of paid leave, and in some cases, they may even be eligible for eight weeks of paid parental leave. Both parents are entitled to receive the statutory maternity leave pay amid the leave period unless stated otherwise in the contract of employment.

New GDPR rules
The Danish Government has also introduced general data protection rules that make employee and personal information data protection a priority. In some areas, the Danish DATA protection Act lays out even more stringent policies for data protection. For example, the processing of the social security number requires permission from the social security account holder. Unless ordered by law, nobody can process the social security number of anyone else.

Collective Bargaining Agreements
The Danish labor market parties have reached a consensus and agreed to a collective bargaining agreement effective for three years, from 2020 to 2023. It lays out various employment terms and conditions, including salary, working hours, overtime pay, maternity and paternity leave, etc. Amid the pandemic, many employers found themselves relying heavily on help from federal government relief funds to meet the daily running expenses. The collective bargaining agreement is a guideline for the continued predicted economic instability for the following years.

In this article, we have mentioned the significant 2020 Danish labor law changes. The main focus of the changes seems to be around improving employee welfare and bringing Denmark’s policies in line with other European countries.

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