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Rules Concerning Illness of a Child

What to do, if my children's school closes down due to Corona? What do I do if my child is hospitalised? And what are my options in general if my child is seriously ill or handicapped? Learn about your rights for non-serious and serious illness of a child.

The standard collective agreement entitles you to paid absence for up to five days if you have a resident child under the age of 15 (or you have a custody-like relationship). If you are absent for more than two days however, you must explain to your employer why it is still necessary for you to take care of your child.

You do not necessarily need to take the days off consecutively or take the first day off on the child's first sick day. But if you leave early to pick up your sick child, it counts as a full day.

If you are an insurance agent, you have total or partial freedom to take salary for up to two days. If your child is sick for more than two days, you have the option to take unpaid leave until your child gets well or someone else can take care of the child. Your employer may require that you produce a medical certificate if you are absent for more than eight days.

But, what about “Corona”?

The challenge that families with small children face in connection with sick kids has not diminished after the Corona pandemic, and many new questions have arisen. What should you do if your child becomes infected with the Corona virus – or if your child is sent home from their institution without being ill?

If your child is sick with the Corona virus, the normal rules on absence in connection with a child’s illness apply. Therefore, you have the right to up to 5 days of paid absence, cf. the standard collective agreement.

If your child is sick for more than 5 days, you need to arrange a different childcare solution. However, your care options may be limited due to the risk of infection.

Finansforbundet (Financial Services Union Denmark) has entered into an “Agreement on re-opening after COVID-19” (the sector agreement) to cushion the effects of the COVID-19 outbreak, both for companies and employees.

Here you can find the agreement between Finansforbundet and FA (PDF in danish)

In accordance with the sector agreement, you have the right to stay home with your child without a deduction in pay. You must be available for work while at home as much as possible.

If your child is not sick but has been sent home because of a closed school or institution, you do not have the right to absence due to your child’s illness since the child is not sick.

The general rule in such cases is that you need to arrange childcare until the child can return to school or to the institution – in accordance with the recommendations of the authorities.

If you cannot find a different alternative for childcare, you have the right to stay home and take care of your children, cf. the sector agreement. You must be available for work while at home. If it is not possible perform work from home, you must make a specific agreement with your employer as to how your absence should be handled.

What do I do if my child is hospitalised?

According to the standard collective agreement, you are entitled to up to two weeks of paid leave if your child (or a child you have custody of) is hospitalised or needs equivalent out-patient treatment that requires your presence as parents.

You are entitled to paid absence for a maximum of two weeks if your child is discharged after a few days but still requires care at home instead of at the hospital. Your employer may however demand documentation for this being necessary.

If you are an insurance agent, you are subject to other rules. Instead, you are entitled to a maximum of eight calendar days of leave with full pay if your child under the age of 15 is hospitalised. As from 1 April 2012, the provision is offset against the insurance agent's salary, unless otherwise agreed locally.

Am I entitled to leave if my child is ill for a longer period?

You can apply for unpaid leave for a period of time if the continued illness of your child makes it necessary for you to take care of the child for more than the five days or up to the two weeks of paid leave. Your company may ask you to produce a medical certificate if you are absent for more than two weeks - the company pays for this.

If you are an insurance agent, you can apply for unpaid leave if your child is ill for more than two days. Your company may ask you to produce a medical certificate if it is necessary for you to be away for a longer period - the company pays for this.

Check whether you are covered by a company collective agreement. This can give you more rights than the standard collective agreement.

If you child is seriously ill

Am I entitled to paid leave if my child is seriously ill?

You are entitled to full or partial leave for up to 13 weeks if you have a seriously ill child under the age of 18. Your employer pays you full salary in the period of leave for up to 13 weeks, during which your company receives a government benefit refund from Udbetaling Danmark.

If the illness entails that your child is hospitalised for at least 12 days, you are entitled to government benefits for a period of 52 weeks pursuant to section 26 of the Danish Maternity Leave Act. The same applies if your child requires treatment and care at home, as this is comparable with a stay in hospital. Please note that the duration requirement of 12 days does not apply if you are a single parent.

Am I entitled to take unpaid leave if my child is s physically or mentally disabled?

You are entitled to full or partial unpaid leave if you have a resident physically or mentally disabled child under the age of 18.

Both you and your employer shall pay full pension contributions during the period of your leave.

Will I receive cover for loss of earnings?

The municipality may cover full or partial loss of earnings if it is necessary for you to care for your child at home or need to accompany your child to, e.g. treatment and control at a hospital.

However, your child must have a significant and permanent physical or mental disability or serious chronic or long-term condition. Whether it is considered necessary and appropriate that you care for your child at home is based on an individual assessment.

The cover for loss of earnings must compensate for the earnings you lose by giving up work in whole or in part. It is generally your most recent, normal gross salary, which forms the basis for how lost earnings are calculated.

If you applied for cover for loss of earnings after 1 January 2011, there is a ceiling for how much you can receive in gross benefits, irrespective of whether you have worked full time or part time.

See the current benefits

Am I entitled to work part time?

You are entitled to work part time if you have children under the age of 12. Your working hours can be reduced to not less than 30 hours a week excluding breaks. The period of part-time employment must be no less than three months and no more than 12 months in total - you may split your part-time employment into up to four three-month periods, each with its own agreement.

However, your company can - based on a dialogue with the professional representative - oppose your desire for part-time employment if they consider that you are unable to go about your work in a responsible manner. This may be due to customer or operational considerations. In such cases, the company shall offer you an alternative job where your desire for part-time employment can be satisfied.

Are you registered correctly?

The best way we can help is if we have the correct information about you. This is of importance to your professional, legal and economic rights. So please ensure that you always change your information if changes occur in your work life.

You can correct your information at Mit forbund.

Contact Legal Department

32 66 13 30

Call us Monday-Thursday 8.30 - 16.00 or Friday 8.30 - 15.00

You can also write an email to raadgivning@finansforbundet.dk

You are entitled to paid absence if your child is ill