Rules regarding employment and private earnings
Students who accept support in a year in which they hold a job and their private earnings exceed a set amount have to repay some of the grants and loans received that year plus interests. The set amount is called "fribeløb".
Your yearly "fribeløb" is calculated from January to December. It is the maximum amount of money you are allowed to earn when also receiving SU. If you earn more, you have to repay all or some of your SU and any SU-loan.
Your yearly "fribeløb" is composed of 12 monthly "fribeløb" – one for each month. Your monthly "fribeløb" can consist of three different rates (lowest, medium and highest monthly "fribeløb"). The rate of the specific "fribeløb" depends on your situation in that particular month. When you calculate your yearly "fribeløb", you have to add up the 12 different monthly "fribeløb".
How to calculate your yearly "fribeløb"
When calculating how much you have earned a year, you must add up all private income you expect to have. It has to be all income that are subject to tax a specific year, e.g. any holiday money, interests or grants, even if it is to be paid out the year after. Your yearly "fribeløb" depends on how many months of SU or loan you receive. Your income cannot go above your yearly "fribeløb", which means it is fine to earn a lot one month and then earn nothing the next, as long as you keep within the yearly amount.
Most recipients of SU can use our calculator to calculate their yearly "fribeløb".
Avoid having to return your SU
You can keep track of your income and wether or not you will surpass your yearly "fribeløb". If you realize that you will earn too much, you can expand your "fribeløb" by deselecting one or more months of SU and by that increase your monthly "fribeløb".
Your income when you start or finish your education
The year you either start or finish your education is possibly covered by the rules of "periodisering".
"Periodisering" of your income
If you have earned too much in the year that you either started or finished your education, you can avoid having to pay back SU, if you fulfill the rules of "periodisering".
"Priodisering" means that we only look at your income and your "fribeløb" for the months (‘periods’) you have been enrolled at an educational institution.
If you’re covered by the rules of "periodisering", you don’t have to pay back SU, if you keep your income within the "fribeløb" for the months where you’ve been enrolled at an educational institution (Uddannelsesfribeløb).
Conditions of "periodisering"
You fulfill the rules of "periodisering" if:
- you’re not enrolled at an educational institution in January or December, or
- you haven’t been enrolled at an educational institution for at least four months in a year (if for example you finish your education in June and are not enrolled for the months from July till October).
If you fulfill the requirements it means that you can earn an unlimited amount in those months where you’re not enrolled at an educational institution. You have to be aware that the standard rules of ‘fribeløb and income’ still are in effect in the months you’re enrolled at an educational institution. If you do not fulfill one of the conditions for "periodisering", your total income for the entire year still counts.
No longer enrolled
It is important that you’re no longer enrolled at any educational institution. It is not sufficient that you’re on leave, is study inactive or for any other reasons isn’t receiving teaching or taking examns. You’re still under education if you start your masters immediately after your bachelor’s degree.
To your advantage
By the end of the year, we calculate your yearly income. If your total income surpasses your “fribeløb”, you will have to pay some of your SU and SU-loan (if you have received it). If you live up to one of the two conditions of "periodisering", we will then automatically make a new calculation where we only consider your income in the months in which you were enrolled at an educational institution. It will never be a disadvantage to you due to the fact that we only use the new calculation if it means you will have to pay back less than you would have to if we used the regular, standard calculations.
How to calculate your "uddannelsesfribeløb"
If you live up to the conditions of "periodisering", you need only to calculate your "fribeløb" for the specific months in which you were enrolled at an educational institution. You are able to calculate your ‘uddannelsesfribeløb’ the same way as you normally calculate your regular ‘årsfribeløb’ on the basis of the rates of "fribeløb".
The way we calculate your "periodiserede" personal income
As a general rule, we calculate your ’periodiserede’ personal income on the same basis as your personal income for the whole year with the following changes: Your "periodiserede" personal income contains the specific part of your income that is registered on ‘eIndkomst’ in a period that lies within a period of enrollment at an educational institution.
There are different rules as to how employers need to register income on SKAT’s ‘eIndkomstregistret’. In your tax file on skat.dk, you are able to see in which period of payment your employer has registered your income. You are also able to contact your employer if you are unsure of the period your employer has registered your income to be within or if you are of the opinion that your employer has made a mistake when registering your period of payment.
We cannot exempt for any income registered on ‘eIndkomst’ in a period of payment that falls within a period of enrollment at an educational institution irrespective of when the income acquired.
The period of payment is different from the period of enrollment at an educational institution
If you have earned anything besides your SU and a part of your period of payment lies outside of the period of enrollment at an educational institution, we divide and distribute your income equally between the days within the period of payment. Only your income in the days that lie within a period of enrollment at an educational institution count in the calculation of your income if you fulfil the conditions of "periodisering".
Holiday money("feriepenge") is a part of your income the year it is taxed. Furthermore, if an income has been ‘periodiseret’ it is a determining factor which period of payment your employer register on SKAT’s ‘eIndkomst’. There is no possibility of exemption within the SU-regulations.
There are different rules concerning the way employers register holiday allowance on ‘eIndkomst’. Contact your employer if you are unsure of the period of payment your employer has registered your holiday allowance to be within or if you are of the opinion that your employer has made a mistake when registering your holiday allowance.
Income that is not registered on ’eIndkomst’ (i.e. corporate profits, interest income and equity income)
If you have an income that has not been registered on "eIndkomstregistret" at Skattestyrelsen, we divide and distribute your income equally between months in the year this specific income was taxed. Examples of such incomes are corporate profits, interest income and equity income. If you for instance have been enrolled at an educational institution from August until December in a year of receiving SU, we add five twelfths of your income that has been taxed within the same year but not registered on ‘eIndkomst’, to your ‘periodiserede’ personal income.
In particular cases we are able to exempt from the relative distribution of income that is not registered in ‘eIndkomstregistret’. We can excempt after a concrete assesement in cases where a student has an income that is not registered in eIndkomstregistret but still resembles incomes that is normally registered in "eIndkomstregistret" or when solid and clear documentation can prove that the income is solely earned during a time the student has not been enrolled an educational institution.
Increase of the "fribeløb"
If you are a parent and entitled to a higher fribeløb, your fribeløb will be increased per month.