Taxation when working or conducting research at Aarhus University

Most people who work/ or live in Denmark are required to pay tax in Denmark and to register with the Danish Tax Agency.

As an international / non-Danish researcher, there are different tax schemes and guidelines according to your status. 

Researcher tax scheme

When you are employed at Aarhus University as a foreign researcher you may, under certain conditions, be eligible for the special tax scheme for foreign researchers. On this scheme you pay a flat rate tax of currently 32.84 percent and can stay on this scheme only for a period of 84 months. The researcher tax consists of an 8% labour market contribution and 27 % tax. The 27 % tax is calculated after the deduction of the 8 % labour market contribution. 

To be eligible for this scheme:

  • You must be employed as a Postdoc, Assistant Professor, Associate Professor or Professor, i.e. (PhDs are not eligible for this scheme).
  • Your employment as a researcher must begin no later than one month after your arrival in Denmark.
  • You must not have been tax liable to Denmark during the last ten years prior to the beginning of your employment.

The researcher tax scheme only applies to salary from Aarhus University. Other income is taxed according to the ordinary tax rules.

It is also possible to be on the researcher taxation scheme, even if you are employed in Denmark but live abroad. It is a requirement that you work in Denmark at least one day a month.

Please inform your HR-supporter whether you wish to be on the researcher taxation scheme or not. It is also your AU HR-supporter who will sign you on to the researcher tax scheme, provided you are eligible.

After seven years of employment on the researcher taxation scheme, you will automatically be transferred to the ordinary taxation scheme. Should you wish to change at an earlier time, you need to contact your HR-supporter. Please note that once you have been on ordinary Danish taxation, you must have lived for ten years abroad in order again to be on the special researcher taxation scheme.

For more information, see the Aarhus University HR website - Taxation of researchers.

Ordinary tax scheme

Tax registration and tax card

Most people who work/ or live in Denmark are required to pay tax in Denmark and to register with the Danish Tax Agency. Howver, if you have chosen to be on the researcher taxation scheme, you do not need to register with the Danish Tax Agency yourself, your HR contact person at the university will do the registration for you. If you at not on the researcher taxation scheme, you must register for tax online with the Danish Tax Agency for a tax card. The tax card is a virtual, not a physical card, and it is set up online.

The Danish tax system is progressive, meaning that the more you earn, the more tax you pay. Your income tax consists of labour market contribution (AM bidrag), municipal tax, church tax (optional), health tax and state tax. As a taxpayer on the ordinary (or regular) tax scheme, you may be eligible for various deductions such as for example interest expenses, travelling expenses, contributions to some charity funds and union fees. You can read about the kinds of deductions and allowances you can take on the website under Deductions from income and allowances from your employer

Tax rate

There are many personal circumstances that can influence your tax rate, and rates can generally vary from approx. 30 % to approx. 56 %. Most people range between 35 – 42 %. You can contact the Danish Tax Agency for more information about deductions etc. or consult the guides listed to the right of this page. If you do not have a tax card, you will be taxed 55 % of your salary. 

Tax liability for cross border or limited tax liability

The Danish Tax Agency distinguishes between full and limited tax liability. If you are a foreign employee with a residence in another country, there are different tax scenarios that can apply.

On under Tax liability you can read about how tax liability is determined by the Danish Tax Agency.

There are many factors that can affect tax liability and determining your status depending on your home country and existing double taxation agreements. Therefore, we recommend you to call the Danish Tax Agency to make sure you are being taxed correctly and according to your situation. You may also seek professional tax assistance or guidance with our Aarhus University provider Deloitte. Read more under Tax assistance

Tax assistance

Contact the Danish Tax Agency yourself

For specific questions about your personal tax status, we advise you in the first instance to contact the Danish Tax Agency

Professional tax advice

If you need professional tax assistance or guidance, you can contact our Aarhus University provider Deloitte. You will need to check with your department if they will cover the expenses, otherwise, you will need to find out about pricing and pay yourself.

Find an overview of services and the Deloitte assistance form on Tax advice for our international staff

Deloitte contact:

Lars Bennedsgaard Andersen
Tax adviser and Director
Tax - Global Mobility MN
Direct phone: +45 61 70 53 51

Online webinar

The International Staff office offers an interactive tax webinar twice a year. Employees of the Danish Tax Agency present an overview of the Danish tax system, the researcher tax scheme, the ordinary tax scheme and answer your questions on live stream. Check for upcoming webinars in the ISO events and activities calendar