Private: Danish Tax System

Understanding the Danish Tax System for Expats

When moving to a new country, one of the most important aspects to consider is the tax system. For expatriates relocating to Denmark, understanding the Danish tax system is crucial to ensure compliance and make the most of their financial situation. In this guide, we will demystify the Danish tax system and provide expats with the necessary information to navigate it effectively.

Overview of the Danish Tax System

The Danish tax system is known for its progressive nature, with higher income earners paying a larger percentage of their income in taxes. The system is designed to provide a high level of social welfare and public services to its citizens. Expats who become residents of Denmark are generally subject to taxation on their worldwide income, while non-residents are only taxed on income derived from Danish sources.

Residency and Taxation

Residency is a key factor in determining an individual's tax obligations in Denmark. If you reside in Denmark for more than 183 days in a calendar year, you are considered a tax resident. As a tax resident, you are subject to taxation on your worldwide income. Non-residents, on the other hand, are only taxed on income derived from Danish sources, such as income from employment or property located in Denmark.

It's important to note that Denmark has tax treaties with many countries to avoid double taxation. These treaties ensure that individuals are not taxed on the same income in both their home country and Denmark. Expats should consult with a tax advisor to understand the specific tax treaty provisions between Denmark and their home country.

Taxable Income and Deductions

In Denmark, taxable income includes income from employment, self-employment, rental income, capital gains, and other sources. It's important to keep detailed records of all income earned in Denmark and abroad to accurately report your taxable income.

Deductions play a significant role in reducing the taxable income in Denmark. Some common deductions include expenses related to commuting, interest on mortgage loans, childcare expenses, and pension contributions. Expats should familiarize themselves with the available deductions and keep proper documentation to claim them.

Tax Rates and Progression

The Danish tax system operates on a progressive tax rate structure, meaning that the tax rate increases as income levels rise. As of 2021, the tax rates for individuals in Denmark range from 8% to 55.8%. The highest tax rate applies to income exceeding DKK 3,040,000 (approximately €408,000) per year.

It's important to note that Denmark also has a municipal tax, which varies depending on the municipality of residence. The municipal tax rate is added to the national tax rate, resulting in the total tax rate an individual pays.

Tax Filing and Deadlines

In Denmark, tax filing is done electronically through the online tax system called "TastSelv." Expats are required to register with the Danish tax authorities and obtain a personal tax number (CPR number) to access the system. The tax year in Denmark follows the calendar year, and the deadline for filing tax returns is typically July 1st of the following year.

It's important to gather all necessary documents, such as income statements, deductions receipts, and any other relevant financial information, to ensure accurate and timely tax filing. Expats who are unsure about the process or have complex financial situations may benefit from seeking assistance from a tax advisor or accountant.

Additional Considerations for Expats

Double Taxation Agreements

As mentioned earlier, Denmark has tax treaties with many countries to avoid double taxation. These agreements ensure that individuals are not taxed on the same income in both their home country and Denmark. Expats should familiarize themselves with the specific provisions of the tax treaty between Denmark and their home country to understand how it affects their tax obligations.

Social Security Contributions

Expats working in Denmark are generally required to contribute to the Danish social security system. These contributions fund various social welfare programs, including healthcare, unemployment benefits, and pensions. The social security contributions are typically deducted directly from the employee's salary.

Tax Planning and Optimization

Understanding the Danish tax system allows expats to engage in tax planning and optimization strategies. By taking advantage of available deductions, tax credits, and exemptions, expats can minimize their tax liability and maximize their financial situation. Consulting with a tax advisor or accountant who specializes in international taxation can provide valuable insights and guidance in this regard.


Navigating the Danish tax system as an expat can be complex, but with the right knowledge and guidance, it becomes manageable. Understanding the residency rules, taxable income, deductions, tax rates, and deadlines is essential for expatriates moving to Denmark. By staying informed and seeking professional advice when needed, expats can ensure compliance with the Danish tax system and make the most of their financial situation.

At SMOOVER Moving, we understand the importance of providing comprehensive information to our customers. If you have any further questions or need assistance with your move to Denmark, feel free to reach out to our team of experts. We are here to make your relocation as smooth as possible.