The recognition of contact dermatitis as occupational depends on the legislation of state institutions and varies considerably among nine European countries, Australia and the USA. Furthermore, claims for compensation after surrender of the occupation are handled in a very different way. Details of management are described based on three typical examples (bricklayer, nurse and surgeon). In most countries, financial compensation is granted if the patient is unable to continue with his/her work and receives retraining for a different occupation. A general shortcoming is the lack of detailed information on the workplace (irritants, allergens and co-factors). For the future, with an increase in workers' migration, harmonization in regard to procedures for diagnosis, therapy, prevention, recognition and compensation should be pursued with high priority.