Frequently asked questions

Find answers to frequently asked questions regarding Dorotheum.
If your question is not answered here, please contact our client service:

Client Service

Mon - Fri, 9.00am - 6.00pm
Tel. +43-1-515 60-200, Fax -508

FAQ - Frequently Asked Questions - Search

We have numerous experts who are your port of call if you want to sell something. Contact the expert responsible for the type of art in question. Further links to our experts can be found here. 

Our experts understand national and international markets, are aware of current pricing trends, and are happy to provide you with personalised advice. You can call them, send them a photograph (e.g. email, post), or even make an appointment for a face-to-face meeting. You can also contact us in person during our opening hours in the Palais Dorotheum, in our auction house branches and our international representative offices. 

Further links to our locations:

Additionally, you can send us your enquiry using the online form. Our online consultation form can be found here.

We can also handle the sale of entire collections and estates. If required, we can travel to your residence if the collection is particularly large.

A sales enquiry is our online expert consultation. This enables you to send us your enquiry online using a form. Are you interested in auctioning a painting, piece of furniture, or piece of jewellery at Dorotheum - but you are not sure how much it is worth? Just send us a digital photograph of the item.
Dorotheum’s experts will perform an initial valuation, and then contact you to arrange a viewing.
Our online consultation form can be found here

Visit the Departments section of the Dorotheum website and select your desired department. The page in question will list the appropriate experts and people to contact. 

After a thorough examination, the expert will determine the item’s estimated value and starting price. The starting price is the price at which the auction of the item will start. The estimated value reflects the expert’s expectations in terms of price.
The sales price is the highest bid, plus fees and any taxes and duties. 

Further information concerning Dorotheum’s tariff of charges for auction sales can be found here

For catalogue auctions, the item should be at Dorotheum three months before the auction. You can bring it to Dorotheum personally, or engage a delivery company to bring it to Dorotheum, at your own expense. We would be happy to provide information to assist. 

After your item has been sold we will inform you of the outcome via email. You can also access auction outcomes online via Auctions - Past auctions, or by telephoning us (+43-1-515 60-200).

The proceeds of the sale are the highest bid, less sales commission and any fees that have been agreed on, e.g. contributions to catalogue costs.
All agreements, sales commission, and any fees, are contractually agreed.

You can find more information on sales commission here

When you bring an item to us to be auctioned, you will generally provide your bank account number. After a successful offer has been made, the proceeds will be transferred to your bank account.
See our terms and conditions for more.

Do you want to know what your jewellery is worth today? If the stones in it are genuine? Do you want to buy or sell jewellery, verify jewellery you bought on holiday, or sell items at auction? An expert opinion or certificate from Dorotheum’s Jewellery Laboratory is perfect to help you decide. 

Expert opinions are required as proof if you need to make an insurance claim, for legal or customs-related proceedings, securing loans, donations, inheritance matters and much more. 

We work alongside international gemological laboratories, national and international diamond and gemstone experts, the National Gemstone Institute at the Natural History Museum and the Institute for Mineralogy and Crystallography at the University of Vienna, which enables us to perform exceptionally high quality analyses.

There are many good reasons to seek out a valuation report, such as:

  • Determining the best possible selling price
  • Providing proof in the event of an insurance claim
  • In legal or customs-related proceedings
  • Securing credit
  • Donations
  • Inheritance matters etc.

You do not need to make an appointment. The expert evaluator will take your jewellery and gemstones for examination. You will be given a confirmation and the expert evaluator will let you know the minimum time needed, the likely completion date, and the anticipated costs for the expert opinion.

The cost is 1% of the estimated value, or, as a minimum, the time needed (calculated per hour), plus processing fees and VAT. If Dorotheum is to sell the item, the fee will be refunded proportionally.

From experience, pieces accompanied by an expert opinion/certificate sell much better. 

Fee overview

  • Retail replacement value
  • Market value (sale and purchase) for private individuals
  • Sale value/realisable value 

In Austria, jewellery must be stamped with a hallmark and a manufacturer’s mark, for example, the mark of the jeweller/goldsmith (there are exceptions). The hallmark indicates the value of the precious metal alloy. The hallmark is a ratio that shows how much precious metal is in one thousand parts of a particular alloy, e.g. for gold, 585 = 14 carat, 750 = 18 carat. This is legally regulated in Austria: Hallmarks (PDF)