Maternity as an independent freelancer
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By 9.1 min readLast Updated: 8. May 2023

Get to grips with the new maternity rules and your options for maternity leave as an independent freelancer

There has been a lot of talk about maternity lately; the distribution of maternity leave between mother and father, earmarked maternity leave for men, etc. But what about maternity leave when you are an independent freelancer?

There have been new maternity rules on 2 August 2022, which you can read more about here

Like that others tax relationship and daily allowance rules apply to self-employed freelancers, different maternity rules also apply than for employees. Below we discuss the new rules and how you, as a self-employed person, should deal with maternity. 

Because how much can you actually earn on maternity leave? What do you get in maternity leave as a self-employed person? And can you get maternity allowance as a self-employed person?

Your options for maternity leave as a self-employed person

As a self-employed person, you also have the right to maternity leave, but special maternity rules apply for the self-employed. 

The maternity rules for everyone were changed on 2 August 2022, and there will therefore be a difference in the rules depending on whether your child was born before or after 2 August 2022. 

In this post, however, we will start from the new applicable maternity rules, so that you, as a self-employed person, can get an overview of your current rights during maternity leave.

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Maternity leave - When are you considered self-employed?

When you want to apply for maternity leave as a self-employed person, it is first and foremost important to have control over when you are considered to be self-employed in this context. This is of course a criterion for being able to get maternity leave as a self-employed person.

If you own a sole proprietorship, you will be able to apply for maternity leave for the self-employed, but if, on the other hand, you e.g. are employed in your own ApS or A/S company, you will instead be considered an employee.

If you use a freelance agency and do not have your own CVR number, you will instead be considered an employee, and this will be it the maternity rules for employees, force.

Also remember to be aware of how maternity will affect yours pension as an independent freelancer in relation to less or no payment for a period.

In addition, you will be considered self-employed if:

  • you yourself have full responsibility for your work, work at your own risk or in your own name
  • you are VAT registered and pay B tax
  • you have the option of hiring others to do your work
  • you pay for materials, tools, office, car or other things yourself
  • you decide your own working hours
  • you decide your own salary, fee or the price of your goods or services
  • you have written cooperation agreements and several customers
  • you work at home or from your own office
  • you have voluntary occupational insurance
  • you own or are a co-owner of a sole proprietorship, partnership (I/S) or a limited partnership (K/S)

To summarize briefly, you must therefore be an independent freelancer, and not a freelance employee, in order to receive maternity leave as a freelancer. As a self-employed person, you must apply for maternity allowance via Virk.dk.

If, on the other hand, you are self-employed without a CVR. no., you must instead apply for maternity allowance directly at Payment Denmark.

When can you get maternity allowance as a self-employed person?

As a self-employed and new parent, you are entitled to maternity allowance if you meet the employment requirements.

It means that:

  • you have worked up to the month before you go on maternity leave
  • your business makes a profit
  • you have worked at least 18.5 hours per week for 6 months within the last 12 months
  • you see your child daily, i.e. that you spend time together while you are on maternity leave

For newly started independent freelancers, such as has been self-employed for less than 6 months, months as an employee can also be counted. 

The only thing that does not apply in this case are months in which you received public benefits.

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The new maternity rules for the self-employed 2022

Now that you have hopefully established whether you are considered to be self-employed or not, and whether as a self-employed person you are entitled to maternity allowance, we can take a closer look at the new maternity rules and the distribution of maternity leave between the parents.

The new rules for maternity leave as a self-employed person on 2 August 2022

The new maternity rules for the self-employed, which came into force on 2 August 2022, mean that each of the parents is entitled to 24 weeks of leave with maternity pay after the child is born.

As parents, you can divide the weeks between you as suits family and work life, but there are some of the weeks that are earmarked and therefore cannot be handed over to the other parent.

As a self-employed person and father or co-mother, you can transfer a maximum of 22 weeks of leave to the other parent, which is why the last 2 weeks of the 24 weeks are earmarked and cannot be transferred. 

As a self-employed person and a mother, you can, on the other hand, only choose to hand over up to 14 weeks of maternity leave to the father or co-mother, as 10 of the 24 weeks are earmarked for the mother.

4 weeks maternity leave before the birth as self-employed

The mother is entitled to 4 weeks' leave with daily allowance 4 weeks before the expected birth. If the birth occurs before the due date, the 4 weeks' leave is shortened, and if the due date is exceeded, the 4 weeks' leave is extended.

2 weeks earmarked maternity leave for mother after birth

The first 2 weeks of maternity after the birth are earmarked for the mother, which is why you as a mother are not allowed to work during these 2 weeks according to the law.

As a self-employed person, it can be difficult to suddenly close the business completely, but even if you simply choose to work part-time during this period, you will not be entitled to maternity benefits.

The next 8 weeks of maternity leave as an independent mother

After the first 2 weeks earmarked maternity leave for the mother, the next 8 weeks maternity leave starts.

Here you have the opportunity to partially keep your business going as self-employed while you are on maternity leave.

As a self-employed person, you can choose for yourself during these 8 weeks whether you want to take maternity leave full-time, for 75% of the time or 50% of the time, where you then have to work in your company for the remaining time.

This can also be a way to extend your maternity leave, as you know e.g. to have half-time maternity leave, will also be able to extend the maternity period. You are still entitled to the same amount of maternity allowance - just spread over a longer period.

However, as a self-employed person on maternity leave, you must be aware that if you resume your work in the company with more than 50% per week, it will be seen as full-time work, and you will therefore not be entitled to maternity leave.

Here you have informed Udbetaling Danmark in advance of how many hours a week you normally work, after which your maternity allowance is calculated based on how much you choose to work alongside your maternity leave.

The last 14 weeks of maternity leave as an independent mother

After this, there are 14 weeks left of the 24 weeks. 

As an independent mother, you can choose for yourself to:

  • hold all 14 weeks full-time
  • work on reduced hours along the way to extend or postpone maternity leave and keep your business going
  • to hand over some or all of the weeks of maternity leave to the father or co-mother
Transfer of maternity leave to the other parent as self-employed

As the mother of the child and as a self-employed person, if you and the other parent live together at the time of birth, you can choose to hand over up to 14 weeks of maternity leave to the father or co-mother.

Special rules apply to the self-employed, so in order to transfer maternity leave, it is important that you are self-employed at the time of the transfer, i.e. the day you notify Udbetaling Danmark of the transfer.

If you do not live together when the child is born, different rules apply and a smaller number of weeks can be transferred to the other parent.

Under normal circumstances, the other parent must spend the transferred weeks within the first year after the child is born.

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An easier freelance life with Factofly

Be a freelancer without hassle and get paid without your own CVR number with Factofly. We help almost 2,000 others with an everyday life without administration.

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Self-employed and maternity as a father or co-mother

We have touched on the maternity rules for the father or co-mother a little, but below you will find them briefly summarized.

As a father or co-mother and self-employed, you will be entitled to 24 weeks of maternity leave. 2 of these weeks are earmarked for you, which means you cannot hand these over to the mother.

On the other hand, you can choose to transfer up to 22 weeks of maternity leave to the mother.

Here, as a father or co-mother and self-employed, you also have the opportunity to keep your business going during maternity leave by choosing whether you want to take maternity leave full-time, for 75% of the time or 50% of the time, where you can then work in your company on remaining time.

How much can a self-employed person get in maternity allowance?

Now for the big question; How much can a self-employed person get in maternity allowance?

How much you can get as a self-employed person in maternity allowance depends on a number of factors:

  • how much profit there is in your company
  • potential income that has been transferred to a spouse who is an employee of the company
  • your own sickness and maternity benefits
  • how much compensation you can get from The maternity fund

The maternity allowance rate is adjusted regularly, but at the time of writing the highest rate is DKK 4,465 per week before taxes. 

To be entitled to the highest maternity benefit rate, you must have a profit in your company of at least DKK 232,180 per year (approx. DKK 19,348 per month).

In addition to the general maternity allowance rate, as a self-employed person you can also apply for compensation from the Maternity Fund (barsel.dk), where you can receive up to DKK 209.16/hour in compensation. You automatically apply for this when you also apply for maternity allowance with Udbetaling Danmark.

You can see more about the compensation from the Maternity Fund for the self-employed here.

Maternity as an independent freelancer
By 9.1 min readLast Updated: 8. May 2023

Get to grips with the new maternity rules and your options for maternity leave as an independent freelancer

There has been a lot of talk about maternity lately; the distribution of maternity leave between mother and father, earmarked maternity leave for men, etc. But what about maternity leave when you are an independent freelancer?

There have been new maternity rules on 2 August 2022, which you can read more about here

Like that others tax relationship and daily allowance rules apply to self-employed freelancers, different maternity rules also apply than for employees. Below we discuss the new rules and how you, as a self-employed person, should deal with maternity. 

Because how much can you actually earn on maternity leave? What do you get in maternity leave as a self-employed person? And can you get maternity allowance as a self-employed person?

Your options for maternity leave as a self-employed person

As a self-employed person, you also have the right to maternity leave, but special maternity rules apply for the self-employed. 

The maternity rules for everyone were changed on 2 August 2022, and there will therefore be a difference in the rules depending on whether your child was born before or after 2 August 2022. 

In this post, however, we will start from the new applicable maternity rules, so that you, as a self-employed person, can get an overview of your current rights during maternity leave.

create free user

An easier freelance life with Factofly

Be a freelancer without hassle and get paid without your own CVR number with Factofly. We help almost 2,000 others with an everyday life without administration.

create free user

Maternity leave - When are you considered self-employed?

When you want to apply for maternity leave as a self-employed person, it is first and foremost important to have control over when you are considered to be self-employed in this context. This is of course a criterion for being able to get maternity leave as a self-employed person.

If you own a sole proprietorship, you will be able to apply for maternity leave for the self-employed, but if, on the other hand, you e.g. are employed in your own ApS or A/S company, you will instead be considered an employee.

If you use a freelance agency and do not have your own CVR number, you will instead be considered an employee, and this will be it the maternity rules for employees, force.

Also remember to be aware of how maternity will affect yours pension as an independent freelancer in relation to less or no payment for a period.

In addition, you will be considered self-employed if:

  • you yourself have full responsibility for your work, work at your own risk or in your own name
  • you are VAT registered and pay B tax
  • you have the option of hiring others to do your work
  • you pay for materials, tools, office, car or other things yourself
  • you decide your own working hours
  • you decide your own salary, fee or the price of your goods or services
  • you have written cooperation agreements and several customers
  • you work at home or from your own office
  • you have voluntary occupational insurance
  • you own or are a co-owner of a sole proprietorship, partnership (I/S) or a limited partnership (K/S)

To summarize briefly, you must therefore be an independent freelancer, and not a freelance employee, in order to receive maternity leave as a freelancer. As a self-employed person, you must apply for maternity allowance via Virk.dk.

If, on the other hand, you are self-employed without a CVR. no., you must instead apply for maternity allowance directly at Payment Denmark.

When can you get maternity allowance as a self-employed person?

As a self-employed and new parent, you are entitled to maternity allowance if you meet the employment requirements.

It means that:

  • you have worked up to the month before you go on maternity leave
  • your business makes a profit
  • you have worked at least 18.5 hours per week for 6 months within the last 12 months
  • you see your child daily, i.e. that you spend time together while you are on maternity leave

For newly started independent freelancers, such as has been self-employed for less than 6 months, months as an employee can also be counted. 

The only thing that does not apply in this case are months in which you received public benefits.

create free user

An easier freelance life with Factofly

Be a freelancer without hassle and get paid without your own CVR number with Factofly. We help almost 2,000 others with an everyday life without administration.

create free user

The new maternity rules for the self-employed 2022

Now that you have hopefully established whether you are considered to be self-employed or not, and whether as a self-employed person you are entitled to maternity allowance, we can take a closer look at the new maternity rules and the distribution of maternity leave between the parents.

The new rules for maternity leave as a self-employed person on 2 August 2022

The new maternity rules for the self-employed, which came into force on 2 August 2022, mean that each of the parents is entitled to 24 weeks of leave with maternity pay after the child is born.

As parents, you can divide the weeks between you as suits family and work life, but there are some of the weeks that are earmarked and therefore cannot be handed over to the other parent.

As a self-employed person and father or co-mother, you can transfer a maximum of 22 weeks of leave to the other parent, which is why the last 2 weeks of the 24 weeks are earmarked and cannot be transferred. 

As a self-employed person and a mother, you can, on the other hand, only choose to hand over up to 14 weeks of maternity leave to the father or co-mother, as 10 of the 24 weeks are earmarked for the mother.

4 weeks maternity leave before the birth as self-employed

The mother is entitled to 4 weeks' leave with daily allowance 4 weeks before the expected birth. If the birth occurs before the due date, the 4 weeks' leave is shortened, and if the due date is exceeded, the 4 weeks' leave is extended.

2 weeks earmarked maternity leave for mother after birth

The first 2 weeks of maternity after the birth are earmarked for the mother, which is why you as a mother are not allowed to work during these 2 weeks according to the law.

As a self-employed person, it can be difficult to suddenly close the business completely, but even if you simply choose to work part-time during this period, you will not be entitled to maternity benefits.

The next 8 weeks of maternity leave as an independent mother

After the first 2 weeks earmarked maternity leave for the mother, the next 8 weeks maternity leave starts.

Here you have the opportunity to partially keep your business going as self-employed while you are on maternity leave.

As a self-employed person, you can choose for yourself during these 8 weeks whether you want to take maternity leave full-time, for 75% of the time or 50% of the time, where you then have to work in your company for the remaining time.

This can also be a way to extend your maternity leave, as you know e.g. to have half-time maternity leave, will also be able to extend the maternity period. You are still entitled to the same amount of maternity allowance - just spread over a longer period.

However, as a self-employed person on maternity leave, you must be aware that if you resume your work in the company with more than 50% per week, it will be seen as full-time work, and you will therefore not be entitled to maternity leave.

Here you have informed Udbetaling Danmark in advance of how many hours a week you normally work, after which your maternity allowance is calculated based on how much you choose to work alongside your maternity leave.

The last 14 weeks of maternity leave as an independent mother

After this, there are 14 weeks left of the 24 weeks. 

As an independent mother, you can choose for yourself to:

  • hold all 14 weeks full-time
  • work on reduced hours along the way to extend or postpone maternity leave and keep your business going
  • to hand over some or all of the weeks of maternity leave to the father or co-mother
Transfer of maternity leave to the other parent as self-employed

As the mother of the child and as a self-employed person, if you and the other parent live together at the time of birth, you can choose to hand over up to 14 weeks of maternity leave to the father or co-mother.

Special rules apply to the self-employed, so in order to transfer maternity leave, it is important that you are self-employed at the time of the transfer, i.e. the day you notify Udbetaling Danmark of the transfer.

If you do not live together when the child is born, different rules apply and a smaller number of weeks can be transferred to the other parent.

Under normal circumstances, the other parent must spend the transferred weeks within the first year after the child is born.

create free user

An easier freelance life with Factofly

Be a freelancer without hassle and get paid without your own CVR number with Factofly. We help almost 2,000 others with an everyday life without administration.

create free user

Self-employed and maternity as a father or co-mother

We have touched on the maternity rules for the father or co-mother a little, but below you will find them briefly summarized.

As a father or co-mother and self-employed, you will be entitled to 24 weeks of maternity leave. 2 of these weeks are earmarked for you, which means you cannot hand these over to the mother.

On the other hand, you can choose to transfer up to 22 weeks of maternity leave to the mother.

Here, as a father or co-mother and self-employed, you also have the opportunity to keep your business going during maternity leave by choosing whether you want to take maternity leave full-time, for 75% of the time or 50% of the time, where you can then work in your company on remaining time.

How much can a self-employed person get in maternity allowance?

Now for the big question; How much can a self-employed person get in maternity allowance?

How much you can get as a self-employed person in maternity allowance depends on a number of factors:

  • how much profit there is in your company
  • potential income that has been transferred to a spouse who is an employee of the company
  • your own sickness and maternity benefits
  • how much compensation you can get from The maternity fund

The maternity allowance rate is adjusted regularly, but at the time of writing the highest rate is DKK 4,465 per week before taxes. 

To be entitled to the highest maternity benefit rate, you must have a profit in your company of at least DKK 232,180 per year (approx. DKK 19,348 per month).

In addition to the general maternity allowance rate, as a self-employed person you can also apply for compensation from the Maternity Fund (barsel.dk), where you can receive up to DKK 209.16/hour in compensation. You automatically apply for this when you also apply for maternity allowance with Udbetaling Danmark.

You can see more about the compensation from the Maternity Fund for the self-employed here.