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Public benefits

In order to be granted a permanent residence permit, it is a basic requirement that you have not received specific types of public benefits within the last 4 years prior to applying for a permanent residence permit and do not receive them until the time when the permanent residence permit is granted.

The critical factor when evaluating whether you have received public benefits is whether the benefits have been awarded under the terms of the Active Social Policy Act (law concerning social policy) or the Integration Act (law concerning integration of foreign nationals in Denmark). If you have been awarded public benefits under the terms of these Acts, you can normally only be granted a permanent residence permit after 4 years measured from the date of the last received benefit.

For example: If an applicant has received social security until 1 July 2014, the applicant will not meet the requirement of not receiving public benefits until 1 July 2018. However some benefits do not prevent you from being granted a permanent residence permit. Read more in the section ‘Benefits that are exempt’.

If you are in doubt about which Act a payment is awarded under, please contact the authority that has granted you the public benefits.

The following are examples of benefits granted under the terms of the Active Social Policy Act or the Integration Act and therefore will normally prevent you from being granted a permanent residence permit: 

  • Integration benefits (integraitonsydelse).
  • Social security (kontanthjælp), including supplementary social security.
  • Rehabilitation benefit (revalidering).
  • Resource course grant (ressourceforløbsydelse).  
  • Educational grant (uddannelseshjælp).
Please note, that if the applicant’s spouse has received social security for a period, the applicant can have received supplementary social security in the same period. The applicant must therefore be aware of whether the applicant's spouse has received social security during the past 4 years prior to the application or during the processing of the application. If that is the case, it may mean that the applicant has received supplementary social security during the same period. This may lead to the rejection of a permanent residence permit. You can contact the municipality if you are uncertain of whether you have received or will receive supplementary social security.
 
The following are examples of public benefits that will not prevent you from being granted a permanent residence permit:
 
  • Student grants (SU). 
  • Benefits paid during periods of unemployment (arbejdsløshedsdagpenge), illness (sygedagpenge) or paternity leave (barselsdagpenge). 
  • Pension (including early aged pension and old aged pension). 
  • Housing assistance (boligstøtte) granted under the terms of Individual Housing Assistance Act (lov om individuel boligstøtte).
  • Financial support granted to an employer upon hiring you in a wage subsidies (løntilskud) or flexjob (fleksjob) position. Be aware that if the employer has received public funds to pay all or some of the wages (løntilskud) the employment will not be considered as regular employment and therefore the employment does not meet the employment requirement. 
  • Fully subsidised places for children in day-care (friplads).
  • Tax-free educational grant.

When you apply for a permanent residence permit you must sign a sworn declaration that states that you have not received any public benefits within the last 4 years. The declaration is included in the digital self-service solution and in the printable application forms to be used when applying for a permanent residence permit.

Benefits that are exempt

If you have received small, one-time benefits not directly related to assistance, you can still be granted a permanent residence permit. 

An example of a one-time benefit is financial assistance from the municipality in connection with treatment for an illness or benefits received when moving.

Another example is that you may receive a benefit that is comparable to wages or a pension or the equivalent, such as unemployment benefits paid to individuals working in local-authority subsidised positions (fleksjob) while they are on holiday.



Last update: 6/8/2017
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Published by: The Danish Immigration Service