EU residence

On this website, EU residence is used as an umbrella term for the right to residence in Denmark pursuant to EU rules.

As an EU national you are free to enter Denmark and reside in the country for up to three months without a residence document. If you are looking for work, you will be able to reside in Denmark for up to six months without a residence document. The three- and six-month periods are calculated from the date on which you enter Denmark.

If you anticipate that your stay in Denmark will have a duration of more than three months, you must apply for an EU residence document before the end of the three months. If on entering Denmark you already know that you will be staying in Denmark for more than three months and you meet one of the bases for residence described on this website, we recommend that you submit your application for an EU residence document as soon as possible after entering Denmark.

If you are a national of an EEA country (Iceland, Norway and Liechtenstein) or Switzerland, the same rules apply for entering and residing in Denmark as for EU nationals. Nationals of the Nordic countries are exempt from having to apply for a residence document. Below, citizens of the EU, EEA and Switzerland are jointly described as EU nationals.

An EU residence document is your documentation that as an EU national – or a relative of an EU national – you have the right to reside in Denmark.

As a national of an EU country, you have an independent right to take up employment in other EU countries. If you are an EU national, you are therefore permitted to work as soon as you enter Denmark – even before you have applied for and received your EU residence document.

If you change your basis for residence during your stay in Denmark – e.g. from being a student to becoming an employee – you must apply for a new residence document.

If you are an employee and change employers, this will not usually constitute a change to your basis for residence. The residence document is not linked to a particular employer and is only conditional on your continuing to be an employee as defined by EU law.

The same applies if you are a student and change from one university-level course to another.

After five years’ continuous legal residence in Denmark, you will be able to apply for permanent residence.

The rules applicable to EU nationals and their family members in Denmark are regulated by the Executive Order On EU Residence (EU-opholdsbekendtgørelsen).

When you have received your EU residence document, you will be able to apply to the Citizen Service in your local authority to obtain a civil registration number (CPR number), register your address and obtain a medical card. As a national of a non-Nordic country, you cannot be issued with a CPR number without having a residence document.

Find out more about EU residence, application, basis for residence, documentation etc. by using the links below:

Who can get an EU residence document?

Application and documentation

Family reunification with Danish national

Recognition of foreign certificates

Nordic nationals

Permanent residence in Denmark

Case processing time

Termination of your right of residence


Do I lose my right of residence if I leave Denmark?

Have you lost your EU residence document?

Danish citizenship

Want to know more?

Tables and forms





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