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Supreme Court of Denmark

Upper limits for chiropractors 

Case no. 171/2013

Judgment delivered on 23 January 2015.

Kiropraktisk Klinik represented by chiropractor A
Kiropraktisk Klinik X represented by chiropractor B
Capital Region of Denmark

Introduction of upper limits on state subsidies for chiropractors was justified

In 2009, the national works council, Landssamarbejdsudvalget, set an upper limit for state subsidies for chiropractic treatment by chiropractors A and B. It was set at the national average plus 25%. The upper limit was based on a provision in the collective agreement between the Regions' Board for Wages and Tariffs and the Danish Chiropractors' Association, according to which it is possible to set an upper limit for a chiropractor, if the expenses for the individual chiropractor's patients exceed the average expenses per patient in Denmark by 25% or more.

The issue in the case was whether it was justified to introduce such upper limit.

The Supreme Court held, among other things, that the decisions to introduce upper limits for A's and B's chiropractic clinics were provided for under the law and the collective agreement, just as there was no basis for concluding that the national works council should have investigated the matter further before setting upper limits. Also, there was no basis to set aside the national works council's assessments or to conclude that the decisions were invalid due to incapacity.

The Danish Competition Act and EU's competition rules did not apply in this case, and had thus not been breached.

Against this background, it was justified to set an upper limit for chiropractors A and B.

The High Court had reached the same conclusion.

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