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Professional qualifications: Liechtenstein to be brought to court over “Dentisten”



Liechtenstein must allow formerly Austrian-trained “Dentisten” self-employment opportunities based on their professional qualifications, the EFTA Surveillance Authority concluded in 2012. Today, as Liechtenstein has failed to take satisfactory measures, the Authority decided to take Liechtenstein to the EFTA Court.

According to the Liechtenstein Health Act, the qualifications obtained by an Austrian “Dentist”, which were confined to specific limited areas of dentistry, are not equivalent to the qualifications areas of dentistry and hence do not measure up to the qualifications of a fully qualified dental practitioner (“Zahnarzt”). However, this difference should not prohibit the “Dentisten” from pursuing their profession on a self-employed basis, as long as this corresponds with their respective qualification.

In Liechtenstein, however, “Dentisten” have to be employed by a fully qualified and registered dental practitioner, acting under their direction, supervision and responsibility, in order to use their professional qualification.

In the view of the Authority, this is a disproportionate restriction on the freedom of establishment. It does not have a sufficient link to the objective of public health, as has been argued by the Liechtenstein Government. Less restrictive measures can be imposed by Liechtenstein in order to protect the public health, while ensuring the application of internal market freedoms.


For further information, please contact:

Mr. Andreas Kjeldsberg Pihl
Press & Information Officer
tel. (+32)(0)2 286 18 66
mob. (+32)(0)492 900 187


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