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Residency permits For Members

Do foreigners in Denmark have to carry their residence cards?

Michael Barrett
Michael Barrett - [email protected]
Do foreigners in Denmark have to carry their residence cards?
If you have a Danish 'opholdskort ' or residence card, remember to present it when you exit and re-enter Denmark. Photo: Chalabala/Getty Images

Foreign residents in Denmark who are granted residence permits are issued with a residence card or ‘opholdskort’. Who does this apply to and are they obliged to carry the card all the time?

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What is an opholdskort? 

Firstly, an opholdstilladelse or residence permit is required for legal residence in Denmark for anyone who is not a citizen of a Nordic country, Switzerland or an EU/EEA country.

The residence permit can be granted to those who want to work, study or live in Denmark, including those who come to the country as family members of other residents and as refugees.

The criteria you must fulfil to be granted a residence permit depend on the reason you are in Denmark and your personal situation.

READ ALSO: What’s the difference between temporary and permanent residency in Denmark?

If you are granted a residence permit for Denmark, you will be issued with a residence card or opholdskort, as documentation of your residence rights.

The card itself is a plastic card the size of a credit card and displays your photo. It also includes a chip containing your biometric data. You will be required to attend an appointment to submit biometric details to the Danish Agency for International Recruitment and Integration (SIRI), at one of the agency’s six locations in Denmark. The agency is then able to produce your residence card.

The opholdskort is distinct from the EU-opholdskort which is issued by Danish authorities to EU nationals who reside in Denmark for over six months under free EU movement rights.

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So do I need to carry the card with me at all times? 

According to SIRI, yes you do.

The opholdskort is an internationally recognised document that proves your residence rights in Denmark.

As well as your biometric and personal information, the card also shows whether you have the right to work in Denmark, and you can therefore be asked to show it by an employer.

READ ALSO: Can you work on a Danish study permit?

You should keep it on you while in Denmark, but it is also important to take it with you when you leave the country. This ensures you will be registered correctly at border control when exiting and re-entering the country. Remember to present it along with your passport.

READ ALSO: Can you travel in and out of Denmark if you lose your residence card?

If you lose or destroy your residence card, you are required to apply for a new one and must pay a fee of 1,270 kroner, and you must also inform the police if the card has been lost.

Likewise, a change in your personal details (such as a name change) also means you must apply for a new card, although the fee is not applicable in these cases. Expired cards must also be renewed.

More details on replacing residence cards can be found on SIRI’s website.

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