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New rules on registration of working hours

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Legal news
calendar 25 January 2024
globus Denmark

On 23 January 2024, the Danish parliament adopted new rules on working time registration. The new rules will generally apply to everyone and will, among other things, introduce an obligation upon companies to implement time-tracking systems. The rules also introduce exceptions to the 48-hour rule, the rules on breaks, and the rules on night work. The new rules will enter into force on 1 July 2024.

The new rules require companies to implement a time-tracking system. The purpose is to ensure that companies comply with working time regulations by recording employees' daily working hours. The system must comply with some specific requirements:

  • Employees must have access to their information
  • Information must be kept for five years after the end of each reference period

No rules without exceptions

Two groups of employees will be exempt from the new rules on registration of working hours, the 48-hour rule, the rules on breaks, and the rules on night work. Companies can use the exemptions when employees:

  • Cannot determine their working hours in advance due to the nature of the work
  • Can choose their working hours

Certain employees covered by a collective bargaining agreement can be exempted if specific criteria are met.

Unless the employees are exempt, the so-called 48-hour rule still applies under the new rules. This means that employees can have a maximum average weekly working time of 48 hours over four months.

Companies must state in the employment contract that the 48-hour rule, the rules on breaks, and night work do not apply.

IUNO's opinion

Companies will become subject to a financial and administrative burden with the new set of rules for registering working hours. However, the new rules will provide a clearer framework for deviating from the 48-hour rule, as well as the rules on breaks and night work. Before the new rules were adopted, it was clarified that companies can comply by simply recording deviations from the agreed working hours. There is also no requirement to record what time of day the work is done. Both clarifications can make the system easier to administer in practice.

IUNO recommends companies to implement time-tracking systems as soon as possible. In addition to the existing employment rules, time-tracking systems must also comply with the data protection rules. Therefore, it is important how the system is set up in practice.

The new act is the result of an EU ruling from 2019 that established that companies must track employees' working hours. We have previously written about it here.

[L 68 Act amending the Act on the Implementation of Parts of the Working Time Directive and the Act on the Labour Court and Industrial Arbitration of 23 January 2024]

The new rules require companies to implement a time-tracking system. The purpose is to ensure that companies comply with working time regulations by recording employees' daily working hours. The system must comply with some specific requirements:

  • Employees must have access to their information
  • Information must be kept for five years after the end of each reference period

No rules without exceptions

Two groups of employees will be exempt from the new rules on registration of working hours, the 48-hour rule, the rules on breaks, and the rules on night work. Companies can use the exemptions when employees:

  • Cannot determine their working hours in advance due to the nature of the work
  • Can choose their working hours

Certain employees covered by a collective bargaining agreement can be exempted if specific criteria are met.

Unless the employees are exempt, the so-called 48-hour rule still applies under the new rules. This means that employees can have a maximum average weekly working time of 48 hours over four months.

Companies must state in the employment contract that the 48-hour rule, the rules on breaks, and night work do not apply.

IUNO's opinion

Companies will become subject to a financial and administrative burden with the new set of rules for registering working hours. However, the new rules will provide a clearer framework for deviating from the 48-hour rule, as well as the rules on breaks and night work. Before the new rules were adopted, it was clarified that companies can comply by simply recording deviations from the agreed working hours. There is also no requirement to record what time of day the work is done. Both clarifications can make the system easier to administer in practice.

IUNO recommends companies to implement time-tracking systems as soon as possible. In addition to the existing employment rules, time-tracking systems must also comply with the data protection rules. Therefore, it is important how the system is set up in practice.

The new act is the result of an EU ruling from 2019 that established that companies must track employees' working hours. We have previously written about it here.

[L 68 Act amending the Act on the Implementation of Parts of the Working Time Directive and the Act on the Labour Court and Industrial Arbitration of 23 January 2024]

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