Laws and regulations governing the work of artists
a) Employment and working conditions:
In Denmark, employment and working conditions are governed by labour law and collective agreements. These laws are not specific for artists but are all general.
For further information look at:
b) Social welfare (health insurance, occupational accidents, disability, unemployment and pensions):
Work permit or “professional” status
There are no official protected titles for artists. However, membership of some artists’ organizations provides special benefits.
Health care system
There is a national health insurance applicable to the entire Danish population. This health insurance is financed through taxes and assures free medical treatment for all residents.
Private healthcare systems
In addition, various private health care schemes exist, which some people choose to purchase as a supplement to the national health insurance.
Working conditions in all kinds of work places are subject to administrative inspections. It is the responsibility of the employer to ensure that the working conditions are safe and sound in any way. The Danish Working Environment Authority (www.arbejdstilsynet.dk) screens all enterprises with employees (including theatres, cinemas, museums etc.).
In case of failure to comply with norms, an improvement notice may be issued against an enterprise if it has a health and safety problem. In serious cases fines are imposed and sometimes even the closure of establishments.
The national health insurance ensures free medical treatment to all Danish residents. The national state pension ensure a minimum pension for residents older than 65 years, however, most people also have personal pensions savings. There are special national aid schemes for mentally or physically disabled persons.
Maternity leave is also regulated in the collective agreements. Normally, persons on maternity leave can for a limited period receive their usual salary. Students and unemployed on maternity leave can be financially supported by the Municipality.
Complementary insurance schemes
Nobody is obliged to complementary insurance schemes, however, any employee can arrange additional insurances at his/her own cost.
Administration of contributions
The social welfare system is administered by local municipal authorities. Private pension foundations administer contribution and payment to retirement funds other than the national state pension.
The minimum level of payment
There is no statutory minimum level of payment covering the entire labour market. However, each collective agreement can set a minimum wage for the particular area.
Artists are paid in different ways according to their work field. Artists with intellectual property rights benefit from the effective distribution of the rights collected by the collective man-agement society. The union representing the artists ensures that they benefit from an efficient collection of remuneration and royalties, as well as an effective individual distribution.
Unemployment insurance scheme
Unemployment insurance is not obligatory in Denmark. The right to unemployment benefit depends on membership of an unemployment fund. There are special unemployment funds for artists. The public social welfare system pays a minimum income when persons are not covered by any insurance scheme.
Source: Danish Ministry of Culture, October 2008