European professional qualification directives
There are two main European legal instruments covering the mutual recognition of professional qualifications
Professional certification
Professional certification, trade certification, or professional designation, often called simply certification or qualification, is a designation earned by a person to assure qualification to perform a job or task...

: Directive 89/48/EEC and Directive 92/51/EEC.

Directive 89/48/EEC covers the mutual recognition of qualifications in recognised professions that require a University degree
Academic degree
An academic degree is a position and title within a college or university that is usually awarded in recognition of the recipient having either satisfactorily completed a prescribed course of study or having conducted a scholarly endeavour deemed worthy of his or her admission to the degree...

 or equivalent. This directive
European Union directive
A directive is a legislative act of the European Union, which requires member states to achieve a particular result without dictating the means of achieving that result. It can be distinguished from regulations which are self-executing and do not require any implementing measures. Directives...

 is implemented in the UK by The European Communities (Recognition of Professional Qualifications) (First General System) Regulations 2005 and by similar regulations in other member states.

Directive 92/51/EEC covers the mutual recognition of qualifications in professions regulated below degree level. This is implemented in the UK by The European Communities (Recognition of Professional Qualifications) (Second General System) Regulations 2002 and by similar regulations in other member states.

The directives cover all twenty-seven member states of the European Union
European Union
The European Union is an economic and political union of 27 independent member states which are located primarily in Europe. The EU traces its origins from the European Coal and Steel Community and the European Economic Community , formed by six countries in 1958...

 plus Norway
Norway , officially the Kingdom of Norway, is a Nordic unitary constitutional monarchy whose territory comprises the western portion of the Scandinavian Peninsula, Jan Mayen, and the Arctic archipelago of Svalbard and Bouvet Island. Norway has a total area of and a population of about 4.9 million...

, Iceland
Iceland , described as the Republic of Iceland, is a Nordic and European island country in the North Atlantic Ocean, on the Mid-Atlantic Ridge. Iceland also refers to the main island of the country, which contains almost all the population and almost all the land area. The country has a population...

 and Liechtenstein
The Principality of Liechtenstein is a doubly landlocked alpine country in Central Europe, bordered by Switzerland to the west and south and by Austria to the east. Its area is just over , and it has an estimated population of 35,000. Its capital is Vaduz. The biggest town is Schaan...

. They mean that any form of work other than those covered by the Transitional Measures Directive (Directive 99/42/EC, covering crafts and trades people such as hairdressers and construction workers) or the Sectoral Directives (dental
Dentistry is the branch of medicine that is involved in the study, diagnosis, prevention, and treatment of diseases, disorders and conditions of the oral cavity, maxillofacial area and the adjacent and associated structures and their impact on the human body. Dentistry is widely considered...

 practice, medicine
Medicine is the science and art of healing. It encompasses a variety of health care practices evolved to maintain and restore health by the prevention and treatment of illness....

, nursing
Nursing is a healthcare profession focused on the care of individuals, families, and communities so they may attain, maintain, or recover optimal health and quality of life from conception to death....

, pharmacy
Pharmacy is the health profession that links the health sciences with the chemical sciences and it is charged with ensuring the safe and effective use of pharmaceutical drugs...

, veterinary practice, Engineering
Engineering is the discipline, art, skill and profession of acquiring and applying scientific, mathematical, economic, social, and practical knowledge, in order to design and build structures, machines, devices, systems, materials and processes that safely realize improvements to the lives of...

, and architecture
Architecture is both the process and product of planning, designing and construction. Architectural works, in the material form of buildings, are often perceived as cultural and political symbols and as works of art...

 - this was the original method of achieving mutual recognition but proved too slow) that would normally be restricted in a member state to people who had gained a professional qualification in that member state are also open to nationals of the EU (and the other three states) that have gained a similar professional qualification in another member state.

Professions regulated in most or all EU states include British qualified accountants (Chartered Certified Accountant
Association of Chartered Certified Accountants
Founded in 1904, the Association of Chartered Certified Accountants is the global body for professional accountants offering the Chartered Certified Accountant qualification . it is one of the largest and fastest-growing global accountancy bodies with 147,000 members and 424,000 students in 170...

 (ACCA) or Chartered Accountant
Chartered Accountant
Chartered Accountants were the first accountants to form a professional body, initially established in Britain in 1854. The Edinburgh Society of Accountants , the Glasgow Institute of Accountants and Actuaries and the Aberdeen Society of Accountants were each granted a royal charter almost from...

 (ACA or CA) or International Accountant(AIA) in the UK), Chartered Engineer
Chartered Engineer (UK)
In the United Kingdom, a Chartered Engineer is an engineer registered with Engineering Council UK . Contemporary Chartered Engineers are master's degree-qualified and have gained professional competencies through training and experience...

, or Eur Ing (European Ing√©nieur), Incorporated Engineer, MIET - Member of the Institution of Engineering and Technology
Institution of Engineering and Technology
The Institution of Engineering and Technology is a British professional body for those working in engineering and technology in the United Kingdom and worldwide. It was formed in 2006 from two separate institutions: the Institution of Electrical Engineers , dating back to 1871, and the...

, teacher
A teacher or schoolteacher is a person who provides education for pupils and students . The role of teacher is often formal and ongoing, carried out at a school or other place of formal education. In many countries, a person who wishes to become a teacher must first obtain specified professional...

s (Qualified Teacher Status in the UK), and lawyers (barrister
A barrister is a member of one of the two classes of lawyer found in many common law jurisdictions with split legal professions. Barristers specialise in courtroom advocacy, drafting legal pleadings and giving expert legal opinions...

s, solicitor
Solicitors are lawyers who traditionally deal with any legal matter including conducting proceedings in courts. In the United Kingdom, a few Australian states and the Republic of Ireland, the legal profession is split between solicitors and barristers , and a lawyer will usually only hold one title...

s and advocate
An advocate is a term for a professional lawyer used in several different legal systems. These include Scotland, South Africa, India, Scandinavian jurisdictions, Israel, and the British Crown dependencies of Jersey, Guernsey and the Isle of Man...

s in the UK). Note that the regulations only apply to nationals of the 27 countries - e.g. an American who gained Qualified Teacher Status in the UK would not be able, under these regulations, to teach in France, but an Irish citizen would. However, the situation would be different if the American were married to a European and they were living in a country other than the country of which the European is a national.

See also

  • European Chemist
    European Chemist
    European Chemist is an international professional qualification awarded by the European Chemist Registration Board for chemists and is for use in many European countries....

  • European Engineer
    European Engineer
    European Engineer is an international professional qualification for engineers used in over 30 European countries. The title is granted after successful application to a national member of the European Federation of National Engineering Associations which includes representation from many...

  • Incorporated Engineer
  • Homologation
    Homologation is a technical term, derived from the Greek homologeo for "to agree", which is generally used in English to signify the granting of approval by an official authority...

  • European Qualifications Framework
    European Qualifications Framework
    European Qualifications Framework is a European Union initiative to create a translating facility for referencing academic degrees and other learning qualifications among EU member states...

The Directives referred to above have been consolidated under Directive 2005/36/EC. This is due to be transposed by Member States in October 2007.
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