The Greencard scheme

It is possible to be granted a residence permit for the purpose of seeking work, and subsequently working, in Denmark. A residence and work permit under the Greencard scheme is issued on the basis of an individual evaluation using a point system.

If you are granted a residence permit under the Greencard scheme, you do not need to obtain a work permit. A residence permit under the Greencard scheme gives you the right to carry out paid or unpaid work. However, a residence permit under the Greencard scheme does not give you the right to work as a self-employed person (run your own business).

If you already hold a Danish residence permit based on family reunification or asylum, or hold a residence permit on humanitarian grounds, you do not need a work permit in order to work in Denmark.

It is your own responsibility to obtain a residence permit if you are required to. If you work illegally in Denmark, you risk deportation, and you and your employer risk fine or imprisonment.

Seeking work in Denmark

It is your own responsibility to find work in Denmark so you can support yourself.

There are several web portals, databases and CV banks which can be useful in the process of seeking work in Denmark.

The present unemployment rate in Denmark is approximately 6% of the work force, and the demand for foreign labour is generally limited. However, certain sectors request highly qualified foreign professionals.

Conditions

In order to be granted a residence permit under the greencard scheme, you must attain a minimum of 100 points. Points are given for: educational level, language skills, work experience, adaptability, and age.

You must have full health insurance covering you and any accompanying family members until you are covered by the Danish National Health Insurance.

You must document that you are able to support yourself during your first year in Denmark. Documentation can be a recent bank statement in your name which clearly states in which currency, and on which date, the statement was issued. If you wish to apply for a residence permit for accompanying family members, you must also document that you are able to support your family members. This documentation must be in either your own or your spouse’s/partner’s name.

Furthermore, it is a requirement that you do not receive any public assistance under the terms of the Active Social Policy Act (lov om aktiv socialpolitik) during your stay in Denmark.

Processing your case

Please make sure that your application contains all information and documentation needed by the Danish Agency for Labour Retention and International Recruitment to process your case. If your application lacks required information or documentation, your application may be rejected. This means that your application will not be processed.

If it is necessary to have your educational level assessed by the Danish Agency for Universities and Internationalisation, you will be notified by the Danish Agency for Labour Retention and International Recruitment.

Duration and extension

You can be granted a first-time residence permit under the Greencard scheme for up to 3 years. Before the end of this period, you can apply for an extension of up to 1 year. Before the end of this period, you can apply for an extension of up to four years.

Your residence permit can be extended if you have worked for the past 12 months for a minimum of ten hours per week.

Your residence permit can be extended for one year if you have lost your job through no fault of your own (e.g. due to cutbacks) no more than three months before applying for an extension, and if prior to this, you worked for 12 months for a minimum of ten hours per week.

When applying for an extension of your residence permit, it is crucial that you submit your application on time, i.e. before your current residence permit expires. Failure to do so will normally result in your application being rejected due to your residing illegally in Denmark. Consequently, an application which is submitted too late will not be processed by the Danish Agency for Labour Retention and International Recruitment. Instead, you will have to leave Denmark and apply for a new residence permit from your country of origin.

Your residence permit can only be granted or extended up to three months before your passport expires. This means that if your passport expires in 12 months, you can only be granted a permit for nine months, or your permit can only be extended by nine months. If you have your passport renewed after receiving your residence permit, you can apply for the full period.

If your residence permit expires, and you applied for an extension before your residence permit expired, you can stay in Denmark with the same rights while your application is being processed.

You can submit your application for an extension no sooner than two months before it expires.

Family members

If you have been granted a residence and work permit under the Greencard scheme, you can bring certain family members.

Use our free service to find out whether you could qualify for this visa. Fill out the assessment form. Make sure that all information provided is authentic in order to make a proper assessment.