Currently I'm working at a Danish company located in Copenhagen while being Argentinian, and I'm potentially soon to become an Estonian citizen, given that Estonia is part of the Schengen area, does that provide me of any benefits?

I've googled a bit but couldn't find a concise answer for this.

  • Are you becoming an Estonian citizen? Is your spouse Estonian? If that's the case, you might find the differences more limited in practice as you would already be covered by the EU freedom of movement rules.
    – Gala
    Aug 22, 2017 at 13:53
  • No, I'm Argentinian only, I'm becoming Estonian citizen after applying for it because my grandfather was.
    – Artemix
    Aug 22, 2017 at 14:28

1 Answer 1


Being a citizen of a Schengen country provides no benefits, the Schengen rules mostly impact people from elsewhere in the world. Being an EU citizen on the other hand has many consequences. Using that search phrase should give you much more information. Two big things come to mind:

  • Much simpler formalities and stronger right to stay in the country. Basically, if you have a job, you can stay (without conditions like a minimum salary, education, language abilities). And if you lose your job or become disable later on, you also enjoy stronger protections.
  • Easier rules to have your non-EU spouse and children live with you. That one is especially relevant in Denmark, which is one of the most restrictive countries I know in this respect.

And those rules apply to all EU countries, not only Denmark, so you can come and go without going through the whole visa/residence permit process or worrying about being able to come back to Denmark later on (that's the whole idea behind the “freedom of movement” and the reason why it's much more than a lenient immigration process).

  • Ok so if I understand it correctly, in the eventually of losing my job I would still have to go back to Argentina/Estonia after a maximum 3 months period? Meaning that having the EU/Schengen citizenship wouldn't make me able to have the resident permanence in Denmark, same as my current Argentinian situation.
    – Artemix
    Aug 22, 2017 at 14:22
  • @Artemix It's more complicated than that. For EU citizens, you have a right to stay in the country as long as you are covered by unemployment benefits or can prove that you have a good chance of finding a job and are looking for it. After that, it's not you are legally forced to leave but you don't have an unconditional right to stay either. The way this works is that Denmark may ask you to leave (which especially happens if you try to get some sort of welfare payments). You can also in any case stay in the country if you show that you have sufficient financial means.
    – Gala
    Aug 22, 2017 at 15:21
  • Then, after 5 years in the country as an EU citizen, you become a permanent resident and the rules change. In that case, you can stay no matter what (except if you are deemed a risk for public policy, public safety or public health, e.g. you are found guilty of a serious crime), even if you need to receive help from public funds.
    – Gala
    Aug 22, 2017 at 15:27
  • Some countries do extend similar rights to non-EU citizens but often with significant restrictions (e.g. regarding the duration of a residence permit when you are unemployed or the type of jobs you're allowed to take). I do not know the exact rules in Denmark so it may or may not make a big difference. I know it makes a big difference for spouse/family visas but that's another point.
    – Gala
    Aug 22, 2017 at 15:29

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