Denmark – Amendments to the law on recording employees’ working hours

What’s new?

A bill amending the law on recording employees’ working hours has been passed and is due to come into effect on 1 July 2024.

This will require all employers to record the daily working time of their employees (except for those exempt) on a time registration system.

What are key changes to recording working hours?

Employers will be required to have a working time registration system in place and record total employees’ daily working hours, except for employees who are exempt. The new rules will allow employers to implement a system where employees are only required to record their performed working hours when they vary from their agreed/scheduled working hours. Employees will not be required to record the specific times when work is performed.

Although there are no specific requirements with regard to the design of the system, it must be “objective, reliable, and accessible” and allow employees to measure their daily working time. The records must be retained for five years.

Who will be exempt?

Employees who are considered “self-organisers” will be exempt from the requirement to record their working hours. This comprises any employee who either cannot determine their working hours in advance due to the nature of their work, or they are able to make independent decisions (such as their own working hours), and/or have managerial authority. Employees covered by collective agreements which include exemption from this requirement will also be exempt. If an employee is exempt, this must be stated in their employment contract.

What are the consequences of non-compliance?

Failure to record working time and keep records in line with the rules could give rise to potential evidential problems where employers are looking to defend working time claims by employees (e.g. overtime pay, adequate rest breaks etc.). Employers who fail to comply could also be subject to fines and/or orders issued by the Danish Working Environment Authority.

So, what should employers do now?

Employers should familiarise themselves with these amendments to recording employees’ working hours and prepare to implement or adapt a current registration system in order to comply with the requirements. If you need any support with this, or would like any further information, please get in touch with a member of the MDR ONE team.

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