Change in Denmark’s Law Relating to Posting of Workers
The Kingdom of Denmark is a country in Northern Europe and comprises of the Jutland Peninsula and various islands around it. A fairly small country, Denmark has a total land area of 42,916 square kilometers. It has a population of around 5.8 million and is famous for being the historical home of seafaring pirates known as The Vikings who lived between the 8th and 11th centuries in north-western Europe.
Today, this small Scandinavian country is best known for being one of the happiest in the world due to its great quality of life and several government initiatives that facilitate and support its citizens. For example, the government of Denmark analyzed the effects of the COVID-19 pandemic on the world economy and how its aftermath was felt by individual countries.
To safeguard and cushion its citizens from inflation and unemployment, the Danish Ministry of Employment introduced a new bill known as the Posting of Workers Directive in July 2020, which came into effect on January 1, 2021.
The Posting of Workers Directive bill stipulates the following changes to employment laws:
Remuneration of Posted Workers
Under this new law, the term “minimum wage” has been changed to remuneration. This change is said to improve equality between locally hired workers and posted employees. All the posted workers will have the same remuneration as the ones given to local workers, and employers can no longer contract jobs on a minimum wage basis. However, employers can negotiate the amount of remuneration with workers under collective bargaining agreements.
Companies that have hired contractual workers are allowed to extend the posting period to 18 months. But they must inform the Danish registry about this extension and hiring. Contractual workers are usually hired for a period of 12 months, and therefore, the extension of 6 more months must be with the permission/informing of the Registry in order to avoid raids and arrests.
Also, all the long-term employees who have been contracted for the job must be provided with an accommodation and an allowance that allows them to cover basic expenses like travel and meals. All employees who have been hired for long-term postings and extensions for durations of 12 to 18 months have a right to these basic facilities like employer-provided accommodation, travel, and meal allowance.
Moreover, the new law states that once the employees have completed their long-term posting period of 12 months and are continuing to work on extensions, they automatically become eligible for guaranteed basic salary and medical benefits. However, other benefits, such as worker’s pension and termination of employment contracts, are not applicable, and the workers must complete their extended period of labor.
Rules on Temporary Agency Workers
Another change that was made to the Posting of Worker’s Directive Bill states that those workers hired via temp agencies are still the responsibility of the agency. The employer must inform and update the agency about the worker’s pay and the living conditions.
This makes sure that the agency takes complete responsibility for all the workers hired and can quickly alert the authorities in case they are being exploited and not being given their promised rights.
Read more about employment laws in Denmark here.