US high court: Who best judges fair competition?

Staff Writer
Columbus CEO

RALEIGH, N.C. (AP) — The U.S. Supreme Court is set to hear a North Carolina case over whether U.S. states can delegate the regulation of professions such as dentistry, plumbing and more to boards of practitioners drawn from those occupations.

The justices planned to hear Tuesday whether state-established boards such as those of dentists, veterinarians, doctors and cosmetologists can regulate their occupations without fear of running afoul of federal antitrust laws.

The specific case involves a 2007 decision by the North Carolina Board of Dental Examiners warning operators of teeth-whitening services in malls and tanning salons that they were practicing dentistry without a license. The Federal Trade Commission said that state's dental board engaged in unfair competition in the market for teeth-whitening services, and the board sued the FTC in 2011.