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Denmark - Substantive requirements for dismissals


Substantive requirements for dismissals (justified and prohibited grounds) - Denmark - 2017    

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Obligation to provide reasons to the employee: Yes
Remarks:
  • - Sec. 2 (7) ESEA : At the employee's request, the employer must state the reason for dismissal. This provision only applies in respect of white-collar employees.

    - Sec. 4 of the General Agreement (1973) concluded by the Danish Employers' Confederation and the Danish Confederation of trade Unions states that "in the case of dismissal of an employee who has been employed in a company for at least nine continuous months, the employee concerned is entitled to request the reason for his dismissal in writing".


Valid grounds (justified dismissal): none
Remarks:
  • No ground for dismissals required in the laws reviewed.
    valid grounds may be established through collective agreements.
    This does not result in a total freedom to terminate the contract: it must be understood in light of the existence of prohibited grounds.
    In addition sec. 2b(1) ESEA provides for the employer's obligation to pay compensation if the dismissal of an employee with at least 12 months' service which is not considered to be reasonably justified by the conduct of the employee or the circumstances of the enterprise.
    (see also sec. 3 ESEA)


Prohibited grounds: marital status; pregnancy; maternity leave; filing a complaint against the employer; temporary work injury or illness; race; colour; sex; sexual orientation; religion; political opinion; social origin; nationality/national origin; age; trade union membership and activities; disabilities; parental leave; ethnic origin
Remarks:
  • See anti-discrimination regulation:

    - The Consolidation Act on Equal treatment of Men and Women as regards Access to Employment, 28 June 2006, prohibits discrimination due to sex. The Act also lays down special rules of the burden of proof in cases were an employee is dismissed during pregnancy, adoption or maternity.

    - The Act on Discrimination on the Labour Market, 16 December 2008 as amended in December 2014, prohibits both direct and indirect discrimination due to race, colour, religion, political opinion, sexual orientation, age, disability or national, social or ethnic origin.

    - The Act on Protection against Dismissal due to Organisational Matters, 8 May 2006, protects employees against dismissal due to membership or non membership of a specific trade union and other organisation.

    On temporary illness: see sec. 5 (1) ESEA.

    Without good cause:
    Sec. 2b ESEA: dismissal not considered reasonably justified by the conduct of the employee or the circumstances of the enterprise entail compensation.
    Sec. 3 (1) ESEA: an employer who is terminating the employment relationship without a "good cause" shall pay compensation.


Workers enjoying special protection: pregnant women and/or women on maternity leave; workers with family responsibilities
Remarks:
  • - See art . 7 ESEA and the Consolidation Act on Equal treatment of Men and Women as regards Access to Employment, 28 June 2006 that lays down special rules of the burden of proof in cases were an employee is dismissed during pregnancy, adoption or maternity.