Denmark releases preliminary 2022 tax returns: Three things taxpayers should look out for

Taxpayers in Denmark can check their preliminary returns from November 18th.
Taxpayers in Denmark can check their preliminary returns from November 18th. Photo: Henning Bagger/Ritzau Scanpix
Over five million taxpayers in Denmark can from Thursday access their preliminary tax return, or 'forskudsopgørelse' in Danish.

By logging on to the preliminary return via the skat.dk website, taxpayers can adjust expected income information and tax deductions for the current tax year.

The release of the forskudsopgørelse (preliminary tax return), along with the årsopgørelse (annual return, calculated and displayed on the SKAT website at the beginning of March) are possibly the most important dates on the Danish tax calendar.

You can check how much tax you’ve paid or are due to pay during the course of the year and edit your income and deductions details on the preliminary version of the return, the forskudsopgørelse. 

Tax authorities have asked the public to be sure to check the returns, particularly in cases where income or working situations may have changed as a result of the Covid-19 pandemic.

Working from home, which can impact a tax deduction for commuting, is one relevant example in this context.

For taxpayers in Denmark including foreign residents, it’s worth checking several elements of the forskudopgørelse in plenty of time, enabling you to enter updates where necessary.

Self-employed and employed people alike can adjust their tax returns by entering any updated salary, pension or benefits information, along with deductions to which they might be entitled on their forskudsopgørelse.

The preliminary return forms the basis for the deductions, or amount of income on which tax is not paid, each month.

READ ALSO: Tax in Denmark: Preliminary returns open in November

Travel deduction (kørselsfradrag

If you travel a long distance to get to and from work, you may be entitled to deduct some of your travel expenses from your taxable income.

The travel deduction, or kørselsfradrag, is designed to cover the cost of travelling to and from work over a set minimum distance. It applies to rail and car journeys alike (for cars, the cost of fuel used for commuting comprises the deductible amount).

You can claim the deduction if you travel at total of 24 kilometres to get to and from work (12 kilometres each way, in other words). This only applies on days when you actually travelled from your home to a place of work, and not, for example, for days you spent working from home.

As such, some people now have a lower travel deduction compared to preceding years, with home working more common practice during the Covid-19 pandemic.

The value of the deduction is 26 percent. As such, if you spent 1,000 kroner on travel in a year, your tax bill can be reduced by 260 kroner.

‘A’ and ‘B’ income

‘A’ income usually registered by your employer with the tax authority, with employers declaring your tax details as they are required to do. In other words, your pay lands in your account with tax already deducted.

‘B’ income does not automatically have the relevant deductions tax deductions applied – you have to register this yourself. This could be relevant for freelancers or people who are paid royalties, for example. With B-income, you have to enter the amount you have been paid, or are expecting to receive, and pay tax yourself, usually via online banking.

If you have lost your job or switched jobs, or taken on a second job, it’s worth checking that the change has been registered correctly and in the right place.

READ ALSO: EXPLAINED: How to understand your Danish payslip

Self-employed people must register profits

If you are self-employed, it’s necessary to register changes to expected turnover at your company – which may have been impacted in an unexpected way by the Covid-19 pandemic.

Shutdowns and compensation packages during the earlier stages of the pandemic affected a wide range of sectors in Denmark.

If you have had to close a company, this must also be registered as it will affect your tax return.


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