Normal processing time

3 months

Processing fee

DKK 2.890,-

What is the au pair scheme?
What conditions do I have to meet as an au pair?
What conditions do my host family have to meet?
What are the terms of the au pair contract?
Red Ribbon – if your are a Philippine citizen
What are my rights, if I am granted a permit?
How long can I stay in Denmark?
Can I change my host family?
What more do I need to know before I apply?

What is the au pair scheme?

If you are a young foreign national wishing to learn about Danish language and culture, you can apply for a residence permit in Denmark as an au pair.

 You must have made an agreement to live with a Danish host family. By taking part in the daily life of the family on the same terms as the other family members, you can gain the desired insight into Danish culture.

The host family will give you food, accommodation and a monthly allowance (pocket money). In return you must take part in ordinary domestic chores.

If you are a citizen of a country outside of the EU/EEA, you must submit an application for a residence permit to SIRI – use this webpage to apply.

If you are a citizen of a EU/EEA country, you must apply for a EU residence document at the Danish State Administration (Statsforvaltningen)

What conditions do I have to meet as an au pair?

You must contact and make an agreement with a Danish family about being an au pair with them.

Moreover, there are a number of conditions to meet before you can obtain a permit as an au pair:

The agreement between you and the host family must be set by a binding au pair contract which establishes the framework for your stay as an au pair with the family.

When you apply, you must meet the following requirements in order to be granted a residence permit as an au pair:

You must be at least 18 years old, but you must not have turned 30.

You must not have started a family:

  • You must not be or have been married, be or have been in a stable cohabitating relationship or be or have been in a civil partnership. 
  • You must not have children.
  • You must not be expecting a child unless you are already staying in Denmark as an au pair and wishes to change your host family.

When SIRI assesses whether your stay as an au pair is in accordance with your life story, or whether there is a reason to assume that your purpose for applying differs from the intention behind the scheme, SIRI will look at the following:

  • Whether you have completed a youth study programme equivalent to the Danish 9th grade.
  • Whether you are able to communicate with your host family and manage yourself in Denmark. Thus, you must be able to speak and understand either Danish, Swedish, Norwegian, English or German on a moderate level.
  • Your reason for applying to stay as an au pair in Denmark.
  • Any previous residence permits or applications for residence permits in Denmark.
  • Any previous stays as an au pair in other western countries.
  • Any previous stays with host families in Denmark.
  • Whether you are related to your host family, or whether you are of the same nationality as one or more of the family members.
  • Your education and any vocational experience, including whether a stay as an au pair has a natural connection to your life, career and development so far.

What conditions do my host family have to meet?

Your host family must consist of at least one adult and a child under the age of 18, and they must be registered at the same address.

If the parents do not live together, they can agree to have you living with them in turns.  Both parents must sign a contract with you, and both parents must meet the conditions for being a host family. 

A family cannot host au pairs if there are no children under the age of 18 registered at their address. 

In addition, the host family must meet the following requirements:

At least one of the parents in the host family must have a thorough knowledge of Danish culture and be able to communicate that knowledge to you.

Therefore, it is required that at least one of the parents is a Danish citizen, a EU citizen or has been living in Denmark for a extended period of time and is significantly attached to Denmark. 

Non-EU citizens with diplomatic status in Denmark cannot be a host family regardless of how long time the family has been living in Denmark.

In addition, the host family must not be related to you or be of the same nationality as you.

None of the members of the host family can be supported by public benefits under the terms of the Active Social Policy Act.

In the application form, the family must declare not to be receiving public benefits at the time when the application is submitted. It is, however, allowed to receive minor occasional benefits that do not replace an actual income.

The host family is only allowed to have one au pair at a time. An overlap of maximum 14 days between a former and a new au pair is permitted, provided that the former au pair will pass on knowledge to the new au pair.

If a host family previously has been abusing the au pair scheme, the family can be excluded from using the scheme for a period of time – and you will not be able to stay as an au pair with the family.

The penalty period of the family from the au pair scheme varies in duration:

  • 10 years in cases of a violation of the criminal law due to violence, threats etc. against a former au pair.
  • 5 years if an au pair has been working illegally for the host family or for others.
  • 2 years if the au pair contract has not been followed, e.g. if a former au pair has been given less pocket money than the minimum amount, has not been given an arrival or return ticket when required, or if the family has not taken out the necessary insurances.

On the application form, the family must sign a statement declaring that they are not excluded from hosting an au pair.

The host family must take out 3 types of insurance covering you:

  • insurance against work-related injuries
  • insurance covering leisure time and accidents
  • insurance covering transportation to your home country in the case of your death, serious illness or injury

When all other conditions for a residence permit as an au pair has been met, SIRI will request that the host family pays a one-off payment of DKK 5,170 (2017 level). The fee will cover parts of the state’s expenses of offering Danish lessons.

The payment of the fee is a condition for you to be granted a residence permit.

The fee must be paid once for each application. It does not make a difference whether you previously have had another host family, whether the host family previously has had an au pair or whether you do not want to make use of the offer to receive Danish lessons.

The payment will not be refunded if you do not come to Denmark, nor if the au pair contract is terminated.

What are the terms of the au pair contract?

You and your host family must enter into a contract which you and both of the parents in the family must sign. 

The contract is a part of the application form and imposes the following terms:

You must have your own separate room and eat for free with the host family.

The host family must pay you at least 4.150 DKK as pocket money. The money must be paid to your Danish bank account no later than the last banking day of each month.

You will still be given pocket money, even if you are ill.

You must pay taxes of your pocket money. Therefore, you must apply for a tax card at your local tax centre.

You must have your own room.

Aside from your room, the host family’s home must contain at least one common room and one bedroom for each two inhabitants. All these common rooms and bedrooms must be approved for habitation and be registered in the Buildings and Housing Registry (BBR). 

You must also have your own room if you are ill.

You may have access to use more than one room.

The host family must pay your fare to Denmark if you are travelling from a country outside of the EU/EEA or Switzerland.

The host family must pay your return fare if you are returning to a country outside of the EU/EEA or Switzerland.

The host family must also pay your return fare if you are in Denmark at the time of application and your application for a residence permit is refused. 

If your host family pays your fare, the time and itinerary of your trip must not be too much of an inconvenience to you.

You lose your right to paid return fare if you do not keep within the following deadlines:

  • No later than 1 month before your residence permit expires, you must inform your host family in writing about your wish to travel to a country outside of the EU/EEA or Switzerland.
  • If SIRI revokes your residence permit, you must inform your host family in writing about your wish to travel to a country outside of the EU/EEA or Switzerland. This must happen no later than 1 week after the revocation of your residence permit.
  • If you choose to end your stay for any other reason, you must inform your host family in writing about your wish to travel to a country outside of the EU/EEA or Switzerland. This must happen no later than 1 week after choosing to end your stay.

If you change your host family, the new host family will be paying your return fare.

You must participate in the domestic duties that are normal in a family, i.e. simple house work and childcare. It must be stated in a weekly schedule when you are supposed to do the different tasks.

You are allowed to work 3-5 hours per day for a maximum of 6 days per week, i.e. between 18 and 30 hours per week.

You are entitled to at least 1½ day off per week. On a half day off, you can only do duties for the host family either before or after 14:00. In addition, you are entitled to take the day off on official Danish public holidays.

You earn paid holiday which you can use from the beginning of your au pair stay.

You earn 2,5 days per month if you work 6 days per week or 2,08 days if you work 5 days per week.

You must enter into a written agreement with your host family about when you will be taking holiday.

When your au pair stay ends, your host family must pay you for any holiday days earned but not used.

If you wish to make changes to the contract, you must be aware of 2 things:

  1. Changes can only be made in mutual agreement. This means that the au pair and the host family must agree to the changes -  and a new contract must be made.
  2. The rules on au pair stays imply that the contract cannot be changed freely as there are specific minimum requirements which must always be met.

The pocket money amount must therefore not be lower than the amount set by the immigration authorities.

The host family must always pay for your return fare when obligated to do so by the rules.

You must do between 18 and 30 hours of domestic chores weekly. Thus, you must not work less than 3 hours per day or more than 5 hours per day.

You must always have at least 1½ day off each week.

You must always have the day off on official Danish public holidays.

You must always have at least one room approved for habitation put at your disposal. 

You must always be provided with free food and accommodation.

An au pair contract must be terminated in writing.

You can terminate an au pair contract at 2 weeks’ notice. 

The host family can terminate the contract at 1 month’s notice.

Unless otherwise agreed upon, you must continue as an au pair for the host family during the notice period, and the host family must still provide you with food, accommodation and pocket money.

If you agree upon moving away from the host family after terminating the contract, the family only has to pay you pocket money during the notice period.

In cases of grave contract violations or other serious circumstances, both parties can terminate the contract with immediate effect.

Examples of grave violations:

  • If the host family has not been giving you pocket money. In these cases the obligation of the au pair to do domestic chores lapses from the day of contract termination.
  • If the au pair moves away from the host family home without notice. In these cases the right to pocket money lapses from the day of contract termination.

Red Ribbon – if your are a Philippine citizen

Philippine citizens travelling as au pairs must have an exit permit from the Philippine authorities – a so-called “Red Ribbon”.

Your host family must have certain documents authenticated by the Philippine Consulate General in Denmark. Afterwards, the documents must be sent to the au pair person. For further information, see the website of the Consulate General.

The Philippine authorities decide whether you can be granted an exit permit. 

Neither the Danish embassy in Manila nor SIRI can help you if you are not granted a Red Ribbon permitting you to leave the Philippines.

What are my rights, if I am granted a permit?

What are you allowed to do with a Danish residence permit as an au pair – and what are you not allowed to do?

The purpose of your stay in Denmark must be to engage in cultural exchange. You must help your host family with their daily chores. In return, they will give you an idea of the everyday life of a Danish family.

You must not begin taking part in doing daily chores before you have been granted a permit. 

When you have been granted a permit, you must not do daily chores for more hours than permitted – not even if you are paid for your extra work.

The residence permit does not allow you to take paid employment. Therefore, you are not allowed to work outside of host family’s home – unless you undertake voluntary unpaid work in an organisation or an association.

The work must be connected to the key tasks of the organisation or association. The work should be of benefit to persons that neither you, nor your host family is related to. 

You are entitled to leisure time in order for you to follow language courses or engage in cultural, religious or professional interests.

A residence permit allows you to stay in Denmark as an au pair for the period of time your permit is valid. 

You must stay with your host family for the full period of your stay.

Moreover, a permit allows you to stay in the Schengen area for up to 90 days within a 180 days period. However, the permit does not allow you to work in other Schengen countries.

You must not give up your Danish address or stay abroad for longer than 6 successive months. A violation will result in the lapse of your permit. This means that you will lose your right to stay in Denmark.

If you need to stay abroad for a longer period of time, you can apply for dispensation to prevent your permit from lapsing.

You can read more about permit lapse and dispensation options here.

With a residence permit in Denmark, you are entitled to free Danish lessons. However, you must have turned 18 years and have your Danish address registered in the Danish National Register.

Your municipality of residence is obliged to offer you Danish lessons and refer you to a language center. 

If you have not been offered Danish lessons within a month after registering your address in Denmark, you can contact your municipality. 

You will be taught together with other foreign nationals who have arrived in Denmark recently.

How long can I stay in Denmark?

As an au pair, you can be granted a residence permit valid for a maximum of 2 years. In addition, the residence permit is limited to the validity period of the au pair contract or to the day when the youngest child in the family turns 18.

If you change your host family, you will not be granted an 2 additional years. You can be permitted to stay in Denmark for a total period of 2 years, which is the maximum for an au pair.

A residence permit can only be valid until 3 months before the expiry date of your passport.

If your passport has a shorter validity than the otherwise possible period of stay, your residence permit will be shortened. This means that the validity of your residence permit will be shorter than it could be. When you have renewed your passport, you can apply for an extension of your residence permit – however, this can only be done 3 months before your permit expires at the earliest. 

Read more about the passport requirements.

Can I change my host family?

If you wish to change your host family, you must terminate the au pair contract in writing at 2 weeks’ notice. After terminating the contract, you have one month to find a new family and submit a new application for a residence permit. 

You must not begin working for the new host family before you have been granted a residence permit. You are allowed to stay with the new host family as a guest.

Your return fare must be paid by the new host family, provided that you have entered into a contract.

What more do I need to know before I apply?

An application for a residence permit as an au pair is processed by the Danish Agency for International Recruitment and Integration (SIRI). If you are in Denmark when submitting the application, you must be here legally. More about legal submission here.

Before submitting your application, you must create a case order ID for your application and pay a fee to cover SIRI’s case processing expenses. You can do this on the “How to apply” tab to the right. Here you also find the relevant application form, AU1. You can choose between an online form and a paper form. 

Your host family must fill in the first two parts of the form, and you must fill in the third part. 

If you use the online form, your host family must first complete their part. When they have completed their part, they will receive a reference number and a password for your part of the form. The host family will pass on this information in order for you to be able to open the application and complete your part. 

SIRI will contact you if we need further information to process your case.

You are only allowed to wait for the decision on your case in Denmark if you have submitted your application for a residence permit while being here legally.

More about legal entry and application submission here.

More about staying in Denmark after legal submission here.

If you have submitted your application abroad and subsequently travelled to Denmark, you must not stay here to wait for a longer time than your visa, your residence permit in another country or your visa exempt period permits. When this period expires, you must leave Denmark and wait for the decision in your home country.   

Below you will find a step-by-step guide to submitting an application to the Danish Agency for International Recruitment and Integration (SIRI).

It is important that you have carefully read the conditions for being granted a residence permit before you begin step 1. You can do this on the tab “Need to know” on the left.

When submitting an application or appeal with a fee, you must first create a case order ID.

Case type:

Au Pair

Fee:

DKK 2.890,-

Information about the applicant

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Is a fee not warranted in your case?

Are you sure a fee is not required to be payed in your case?

Only certain applicants are exempt from paying a fee. If the immigration authorities decide at a later stage that the applicant/appelant is not exempt from paying a fee, the application/appeal will be rejected.
If you have payed a fee and the following case handling shows that the fee should not have been payed, the whole fee will be refunded.

In certain cases the fee is not warranted (fee exemption). Examples are:

  • The Association Agreement between the EU and Turkey
  • Denmark’s international obligations
  • Citizenship of the EU/EEA

You are still required to create a case order ID, even if you are not required to pay a fee.

If you have payed a fee and it is not warranted, the whole fee will be refunded.

Read more about Fee exemption

The information is incorrect

If no case order ID is shown in the field below, please type your case order ID and click on View payment status.

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Payment options

Betal med Dankort, VISA eller MasterCard

Pay by international bank transfer

Case Order ID:

Pay online using Danish internet bank

Danish internet bank

This page tells you which information is required when paying the fee online using a Danish internet bank.

Pay using Danish internet bank

Please include the following information when paying the fee online using a Danish internet bank.

Order payment form and pay fee at a post office or in a bank

Order payment form

On this page you can order a payment form which you can use to pay the fee at a post office or in a bank. 

The payment form will be sent to the address you give below. 

It is a good idea to gather the necessary documents before you start to complete the application form. You can use the check list below.

If you submit documents not written in English, German, Norwegian, Swedish or Danish, you must also submit certified translations into Danish or English.

You must submit:

Expect to use

40 minutes

per person to complete the application

3 persons

You and your host family are each required to complete the form. Both your host parents must sign

In this step you and your host family have access to the relevant application forms. You can choose between an online form and a print form.

Make sure that you have completed all the preceeding steps before you begin.

All our application forms contain careful instructions on how to complete the form and what kind of documents you must submit along with the form.

Online application

If you apply online, you must use the application form AU1 online:

In the AU1 online form your host family must complete the two parts of the form. When your host family has completed their part, a reference number and password will be shown, which your host family must pass on to you. You are then able to open the online application and complete your part.

Make sure you have all documents ready in digital form, in order to attach them as you complete the application form.

 

Use the online form AU1

 

Printable application forms

In the printable application form AU1 your host family must complete parts 2 and 3 of the form. When your host family has completed their part, you must complete your part. Once all parts have been completed, they must be submitted together – read more in the next step.

You must submit the necessary documents with the application.

The printable application form in Word format can be completed on screen before you print. The application form in pdf format must be printed first and then completed by hand.

Download the printable form AU1 (Word format) 

Download the printable form AU1 (Pdf format)

You have applied online

If you have applied online, your application has already been submitted. Read more about having your biometrics recorded in the next step.

If you have granted power of attorney to your host family or a third party to submit the application on your behalf, you can continue to the next step concerning biometrics.

You are are submitting the application abroad

The application can be submitted to a Danish diplomatic mission or an application centre in the country where you are residing.

See the Ministry of Foreign Affairs’ list of diplomatic missions or application centres where you can hand in your application

In certain countries Denmark does not have a diplomatic mission or application centre. In these instances the list will refer you to one of the Norwegian missions with which Denmark has made an agreement or to the nearest Danish diplomatic mission or application centre in the region.

We recommend that you visit the local diplomatic mission’s webpage to get more information before you submit the application. The individual diplomatic mission can have additional requirements regarding payment of additional fees, submission of additional passport photos or additional copies of the application.

You are submitting the application in Danmark

If you are residing legally in Denmark, you are normally able to submit the application in Denmark. This is the case, if you:

  • hold a valid visa
  • is exempt from the visa requirement or
  • already hold a valid residence permit.

Read more about the legal residence requirement and submission of your application in Denmark. 

You can submit the applicaton in SIRI’s Citizen Centre in Copenhagen. If you live outside the Greater Copenhagen area, you can also submit the application at a local police station with facilities for recording biometrics.

If you plan to submit you application I SIRI’s Citizen Centre, you must remember to book an appointment.

See a list of local police stations, where you can submit your application.

You can also send the application to SIRI.

 

When you apply for a residence permit, you must have your biometric features recorded. This means that you must have a facial photo taken and your fingerprints recorded. The facial photo and your fingerprints will be stored on a microchip embedded in the residence card, which will be issued to you if you are granted a permit.

If you do not agree to have your biometric features recorded, your application will be rejected. This means that your application will not be processed.

Read more about biometrics here.

You have applied online

If you have submitted an online application form, you must have your biometric features recorded no later than 14 days after you submitted your application.

Your biometric features can be recorded at a Danish diplomatic mission abroad, at a Danish local police station with facilities for recording biometrics or in SIRI’s Citizen Centre.

If you are unable to have your biometric features recorded within the time limit of 14 days, because you are unable to book an appointment at a Danish diplomatic mission, you can inform us by email of the appointed time you will have your biometrics recorded. This way you can avoid having your application rejected.

You are are submitting the application abroad

If you submit an printable application form, you can have your biometric features recorded at a Danish diplomatic mission or an application centre in the country, where you reside.

See the Ministry of Foreign Affairs’ list of diplomatic missions or application centres where you can have your biometric features recorded.

In certain countries Denmark does not have a diplomatic mission or application centre. In these instances the list will refer you to one of the Norwegian missions with which Denmark has made an agreement or to the nearest Danish diplomatic mission or application centre in the region.

If you submit your application to a Norwegian diplomatic mission, you must also submit two passport photos. If you are granted a residence permit based on your application, you must within a specific time frame afte you entry to Denmark have your biometric features recorded.

We recommend that you visit the local diplomatic mission’s webpage to get more information before you submit the application. The individual diplomatic mission can have additional requirements regarding payment of additional fees, submission of additional passport photos or additional copies of the application.

You are submitting the application in Danmark

If you are residing legally in Denmark, you are normally able to have your biometric features recorded in Denmark. This is the case, if you:

  • hold a valid visa

  • is exempt from the visa requirement or

  • already hold a valid residence permit.

Read more about the legal residence requirement and submission of your application in Denmark. 

You can have your biometric features recorded in SIRI’s Citizen Centre in Copenhagen. 

If you plan to have your biometrics recorded in SIRI’s Citizen Centre, you must remember to book an appointment.

If you live outside the Greater Copenhagen area, you can have your biometric features recorded at a local police station with facilities for recording biometrics.

See a list of local police stations, where you can have your biometrics recorded.

You have submitted your application succesfully if you have:

  • created a case order ID
  • paid the fee
  • submitted the application
  • had your biometric features recorded

You can see the normal case processing time to the right on this page. When we make a decision in your case, you will receive an answer.

SIRI will contact you or your employer if we need further information to process your case.

Read more about what you can expect while you are waiting for an answer.

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