European network of legal experts in the non-discrimination field
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The information contained on this page represents the situation as of 1 Janaury 2014 and is a summary of the country report produced by the country expert from the network. The summary can be downloaded here as well.

Contact: Wilfried Marxer

Country context

The Principality of Liechtenstein is one of the smallest countries in Europe, with only 36,000 inhabitants. Some basic overview about the population can be given by the following figures.

Main principles and definitions

Direct discrimination is defined in both the AEPD and the AEWM. The AEPD defines direct discrimination as follows: discrimination occurs when a person with disability is, has been or would be treated less favourably in a comparable situation than a person without disability (Article 6 § 1 AEPD). Same definition applies to the AEWM (Article 1a AEWM). Indirect discrimination is defined equally in the AEPD (Article 6 § 2) and the AEWM (Article 1a): when an apparently neutral provision, criterion or practice would put persons with disabilities (or of one sex) at a particular disadvantage compared with persons without disability (or of the other sex), unless that provision, criterion or practice is objectively justified by a legitimate aim, and the means of achieving that aim are appropriate and necessary.

Enforcing the law

Several ministries and workgroups are supporting the enforcement of the laws by advising and counselling concerned persons and by coordinating activities. State authorities strongly co-operate with and support non-governmental associations financially, listed in section 6.

Main legislation

The Directives 2000/78/EC and 2000/43/EC are based on Art. 13 of the EC Treaty which is not reflected in the EEA Agreement. The Directives have thus not been incorporated into the EEA Agreement. Liechtenstein, as a member state of the EEA but Non-Member of the European Union, has refrained from implementing the Directives autonomously. 

Material scope

The AEPD states in Article 5 that people with disabilities shall not be discriminated against. Article 10 specifies that employees shall not be discriminated against, neither in a direct nor in an indirect way. The provision in Article 10 also include the aspects of recruitment, payment, voluntary social security benefits, vocational training, occupational career and promotion, other working conditions, termination of employment, accessibility to job services, vocational training and other services outside an employment contract, membership and co-operation in trade unions, and conditions for the access to self-employment (Article 10 §1 lit. a to lit. k). There are no such legal provisions with respect to other grounds of discrimination, except gender (AEWM), where the provisions are similar to the AEPD.

Equality bodies

The main bodies that are dedicated to anti-discrimination – fully or partly – are:

Go to the European Commission - Employment, Social Affairs and Equal Opportunities This initiative is financed by the EC Programme Progress. But the views expressed in this website do not necessarily reflect the official views of the EU institutions.