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Constitutional Complaints and Organstreit Proceedings Against the OMT Programme of the European Central Bank Unsuccessful

Judgment of 21 June 2016 – 2 BvR 2728/13, 2 BvR 2729/13, 2 BvR 2730/13, 2 BvR 2731/13, 2 BvE 13/13

If the conditions formulated by the Court of Justice of the European Union in its judgment of 16 June 2015 (C-62/14) and intended to limit the scope of the OMT programme are met, the complainants’ rights under Art. 38 sec. 1 sentence 1, Art. 20 secs. 1 and 2 in conjunction with Art. 79 sec. 3 of the Basic Law (Grundgesetz – GG) are not violated by the fact that the Federal Government and the Bundestag have not taken suitable steps to revoke or limit the effect of the policy decision of the European Central Bank of 6 September 2012 concerning the OMT programme. Furthermore, if these conditions are met, the OMT programme does not currently impair the Bundestag’s overall budgetary responsibility. Such was the decision of the Second Senate of the Federal Constitutional Court in a judgment pronounced today. If interpreted in accordance with the Court of Justice’s judgment, the policy decision on the OMT programme does not “manifestly” exceed the competences attributed to the European Central Bank. Moreover, if interpreted in accordance with the Court of Justice’s judgment, the OMT programme does not present a constitutionally relevant threat to the German Bundestag’s right to decide on the budget.

Facts of the Case:

The constitutional complaints and the application for Organstreit proceedings [proceedings relating to disputes between constitutional organs] challenge two programmes aimed at the purchase of government bonds of Member States of the Euro zone on the secondary market by the European System of Central Banks (“ESCB”).
For further information please refer to press releases nos. 29/2013 of 19 April 2013 (available in German), 9/2014 of 7 February 2014, and 3/2016 of 15 January 2016.

Key Considerations of the Senate:

1. The constitutional complaints and the Organstreit proceedings are partially inadmissible. In particular, the constitutional complaints are inadmissible to the extent that they directly challenge acts of the European Central Bank. To that extent those acts cannot be challenged before the Bundesverfassungsgericht (German Federal Constitutional Court).

2. To the extent that the constitutional complaints and the application for Organstreit proceedings are admissible, they are unfounded.

a) By empowering the Federation to transfer sovereign powers to the European Union (Art. 23 sec. 1 sentence 2 GG), the Basic Law also accepts a precedence of application of European Union law (Anwendungsvorrang des Unionsrechts). The legislature deciding on European integration matters may not only exempt institutions, bodies, offices and agencies of the European Union from being comprehensively bound by the guarantees of the Basic Law but also German entities that implement European Union law.

However, the precedence of application of European Union law only extends as far as the Basic Law and the relevant Act of Approval permit or envisage the transfer of sovereign powers. Therefore, limits for the opening of German statehood derive from the constitutional identity of the Basic Law guaranteed by Art. 79 sec. 3 GG and from the European integration agenda (Integrationsprogramm), which is laid down in the Act of Approval and vests European Union law with the necessary democratic legitimacy for Germany.

b) The fundamental elements of the principle of democracy (Art. 20 secs. 1 and 2 GG) are part of the constitutional identity of the Basic Law, which has been declared to be beyond the reach both of constitutional amendment (Art. 79 sec. 3 GG) and European integration (Art. 23 sec. 1 sentence 3 in conjunction with Art. 79 sec. 3 GG). Therefore, the legitimacy given to state authority by elections may not be depleted by transfers of powers and tasks to the European level. Thus, the principle of sovereignty of the people (Volkssouveränität) (Art. 20 sec. 2 sentence 1 GG) is violated if institutions, bodies, offices and agencies of the European Union that are not adequately democratically legitimised through the European integration agenda laid down in the Act of Approval exercise public authority.

c) When conducting its identity review, the Federal Constitutional Court examines whether the principles declared by Art. 79 sec. 3 GG to be inviolable are affected by transfers of sovereign powers by the German legislature or by acts of institutions, bodies, offices and agencies of the European Union. This concerns the protection of the fundamental rights’ core of human dignity (Art. 1 GG) as well as the fundamental principles that characterise the principles of democracy, of the rule of law, of the social state, and of the federal state within the meaning of Art. 20 GG.

When conducting its ultra vires review, the Federal Constitutional Court (merely) examines whether acts of institutions, bodies, offices and agencies of the European Union are covered by the European integration agenda (Art. 23 sec. 2 sentence 2 GG), and thus by the precedence of application of European Union law. Finding an act to be ultra vires requires – irrespective of the area concerned – that it manifestly exceed the competences transferred to the European Union.

d) Similar to the duties to protect (Schutzpflichten) mandated by the fundamental rights, the re-sponsibility with respect to European integration (Integrationsverantwortung) requires the constitutional organs to protect and promote the citizens’ rights protected by Art. 38 sec. 1 sentence 1 in conjunction with Art. 20 sec. 2 sentence 1 GG if the citizens are not themselves able to ensure the integrity of their rights. Therefore, the constitutional organs’ obligation to fulfil their responsibility with respect to European integration is paralleled by a right of the voters enshrined in Art. 38 sec. 1 sentence 1 GG. This right requires the constitutional organs to ensure that the drop in influence (Einflussknick) and the restrictions on the voters’ “right to democracy” that come with the implementation of the European integration agenda do not extend further than is justified by the transfer of sovereign powers to the European Union.

In principle, duties to protect are violated only if no protective measures are taken at all, if measures taken are manifestly unsuitable or completely inadequate, or if they fall considerably short of the protection’s aim. This means for the responsibility with respect to European integration (Integrationsverantwortung) that, if institutions, bodies, offices and agencies of the European Union exceed their competences in a manifest and structurally relevant manner or violate the constitutional identity in other ways, the constitutional organs must actively work towards respect of the European integration agenda. They may – within the scope of their competences – be required to use legal or political means to work towards revocation of measures that are not covered by the European integration agenda as well as – as long as the measures continue to have effect – to take suitable measures to restrict the national effects of such measures as far as possible. Just like the duties of protection inherent in fundamental rights, the responsibility with respect to European integration (Integrationsverantwortung) may in certain legal and factual circumstances concretise in such a way that a specific duty to act results from it.

3. According to these standards and if the conditions listed below are met, the inaction on the part of the Federal Government and of the Bundestag with regard to the policy decision of the European Central Bank of 6 September 2012 does not violate the complainants’ rights under Art. 38 sec. 1 sentence 1, Art. 20 secs. 1 and 2 in conjunction with Art. 79 sec. 3. Furthermore, the Bundestag’s rights and obligations with regard to European integration (Integrationsverantwortung) – including its overall budgetary responsibility – are not impaired.

a) The Federal Constitutional Court bases its review on the interpretation of the OMT decision formulated by the Court of Justice in its judgment of 16 June 2015. The Court of Justice’s finding that the policy decision on the OMT programme is within the bounds of the respective competences and does not violate the prohibition of monetary financing of the budget still remains within the mandate of the Court of Justice (Art. 19 sec. 1 sentence 2 TEU).

The Court of Justice bases its view to a large extent on the objectives of the OMT programme as indicated by the European Central Bank, on the means employed to achieve those objectives, and on the programme’s effects on economic policy, which – according to the Court of Justice – are only indirect in nature. It bases its review not only on the policy decision of 6 September 2012 concerning the technical details, but derives further framework conditions – in particular from the principle of proportionality –, which set binding limits for any implementation of the OMT programme. Furthermore, the Court of Justice affirms that acts of the European Central Bank are not exempt from judicial review, in particular regarding whether the principles of conferral and proportionality are complied with.

b) Nevertheless, the manner of judicial specification of the Treaty (Treaty on the Functioning of the European Union) evidenced in the judgment of 16 June 2015 meets with serious objections on the part of the Senate. These objections concern the way the facts of the case were established, the way the principle of conferral was discussed, and the way the judicial review of acts of the European Central Bank that relate to the definition of its mandate was conducted.

Firstly, the Court of Justice accepts the assertion that the OMT programme pursues a monetary policy objective without questioning or at least discussing and individually reviewing the soundness of the underlying factual assumptions, and without testing these assumptions with regard to the indications that evidently argue against a character of monetary policy.

Furthermore, – despite its own belief that economic and monetary policy overlap – the Court of Justice essentially relies on the objectives of the measure as indicated by the organ on review as well as on the recourse to the instrument of the purchase of government bonds enshrined in Art. 18 of the ESCB Statute when qualifying the OMT programme as an instrument belonging to the field of monetary policy.

Lastly, the Court of Justice provides no answer to the following issue: that the independence granted to the European Central Bank leads to a noticeable reduction in the level of democratic legitimation of its actions and should therefore give rise to restrictive interpretation and to particularly strict judicial review of the mandate of the European Central Bank. This holds all the more true if the principles of democracy and sovereignty of the people (Volkssouveränität) are affected – and thereby the constitutional identity of a Member State, which the European Union is required to respect.

c) Despite these concerns, if interpreted in accordance with the Court of Justice’s judgment, the policy decision on the OMT programme does not – within the meaning of the competence retained by the Federal Constitutional Court to review ultra vires acts – “manifestly” exceeds the competences attributed to the European Central Bank. Although – unlike the Senate – the Court of Justice does not question the indicated objectives and evaluates each of the signs that the Sen-ate holds to argue against the alleged objectives in an isolated manner instead of performing an overall evaluation, this is acceptable because on the level of the exercise of competences the Court of Justice has essentially performed the restrictive interpretation of the policy decision that the Senate’s request for a preliminary ruling of 14 January 2014 held to be possible.

The Court of Justice differentiates between the policy decision of 6 September 2012 on the one hand and the implementation of the programme on the other. With a view to the proportionality of the OMT programme and the fulfilment of the obligations to state reasons, it specifies additional compelling restrictions that apply to any implementation of the OMT programme and exceed the framework conditions indicated in the policy decision. Against this backdrop, one must assume that the Court of Justice considers the conditions it specified to be legally binding. In using procedural means to limit the ECB’s competences by reviewing whether the principle of proportionality has been observed, the Court of Justice takes up the issue of the nearly unlimited potential of the decision of 6 September 2012. The restrictive parameters developed by the Court of Justice do not completely remove the character of the OMT programme insofar as it encroaches upon economic policy. However, together with the conditions prescribed by the decision of 6 September 2012 – in particular the participation of Member States in adjustment programmes, Member States’ access to the bond market, and the focus on bonds with a short maturity – they make it appear acceptable to assume that the character of the OMT programme is at least to the largest extent monetary in kind.

d) If interpreted in accordance with the Court of Justice’s judgment, the policy decision on the technical framework conditions of the OMT programme as well as its possible implementation also do not manifestly violate the prohibition of monetary financing of the budget. Although the Court of Justice considers the policy decision to be permissible even without further specifications, its implementation must fulfil further conditions in order for the purchase programme to not violate Union law. Thusly interpreted, and when comprehensively assessed and evaluated, the OMT programme fulfils the requirements formulated by the Senate’s order of 14 January 2014 requesting a preliminary ruling by the Court of Justice.

e) Since, against this backdrop, the OMT programme constitutes an ultra vires act if the framework conditions defined by the Court of Justice are not met, the German Bundesbank may only participate in the programme’s implementation if and to the extent that the prerequisites defined by the Court of Justice are met; i.e. if

• purchases are not announced,

• the volume of the purchases is limited from the outset,

• there is a minimum period between the issue of the government bonds and their purchase by the ESCB that is defined from the outset and prevents the issuing conditions from being distorted,

• the ESCB purchases only government bonds of Member States that have bond market access enabling the funding of such bonds,

• purchased bonds are only in exceptional cases held until maturity and

• purchases are restricted or ceased and purchased bonds are remarketed should continuing the intervention become unnecessary.

f) Their responsibility with respect to European integration does not require the Federal Government and the Bundestag to take action against the OMT programme in order to protect the overall budgetary responsibility of the Bundestag. If interpreted in accordance with the Court of Justice’s judgment, the OMT programme does not present a constitutionally relevant threat to the Bundestag’s right to decide on the budget. Therefore, it can currently also not be established that implementation of the OMT programme would pose a threat to the overall budgetary responsibility.

g) However, due to their responsibility with respect to European integration (Integrationsverantwortung), the Federal Government and the Bundestag are under a duty to closely monitor any implementation of the OMT programme. This compulsory monitoring shall determine not only whether the abovementioned conditions are met, but also whether there is a specific threat to the federal budget – deriving in particular from the volume and the risk structure of the purchased bonds, which may change even after their purchase.


The translations of Federal Constitutional Court decisions constitute official works pursuant to § 5 sec. 2 of the Act on Copyright and Related Rights (Gesetz über Urheberrecht und verwandte Schutzrechte – UrhG) and therefore do not enjoy copyright protection. However, those works may not be changed (§ 62 sec. 1 to 3 UrhG) and the source always has to be acknowledged (§ 63 sec. 1 and 2 UrhG). Under the Terms and Conditions of the Creative Commons Licence BY-SA 3.0 <https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/3.0/legalcode> the works may only be reproduced giving appropriate credit and under the same licence as the original.

The translations of Federal Constitutional Court decisions are intended for information purposes only; the sole authoritative versions are the official German originals. Although the translations were prepared with the utmost care, the Federal Constitutional Court is not responsible fot their accuracy and completeness.

Prohibition of Professional Partnership of Lawyers with Physicians and Pharmacists is Unconstitutional [1 BvL 6/13]

Prohibition of Professional Partnership of Lawyers with Physicians and Pharmacists is Unconstitutional

Press Release No. 6/2016 of 02 February 2016

Order of 12 January 2016
1 BvL 6/13

  • 59a sec. 1 sentence 1 of the Federal Lawyers’ Act (Bundesrechtsanwaltsordnung) is unconstitutional and void to the extent that it prohibits lawyers to establish a professional partnership with physicians and pharmacists for the joint practicing of their professions. Such was the decision by the First Senate of the Federal Constitutional Court in an order published today in specific judicial review proceedings conducted upon referral by the Federal Court of Justice (Bundesgerichtshof). The prohibition to establish a partnership (Sozietätsverbot) disproportionately interferes with the freedom to practice an occupation (Art. 12 sec. 1 of the Basic Law, Grundgesetz – GG). The legislature permits the association of lawyers with other professional groups – in particular with patent attorneys, tax consultants and auditors – in a professional partnership. Compared to such partnerships, an inter-professional cooperation of lawyers with physicians and pharmacists does not hold such considerable additional risks regarding compliance with a lawyer’s professional duties as to justify a different treatment.

Facts of the Case and Procedural History:

The two petitioners in the initial proceedings are a lawyer and a physician and pharmacist. They established a professional partnership and applied for its entry into the partnership register. A Local Court (Amtsgericht) and a Higher Regional Court (Oberlandesgericht) denied the registration arguing that such a partnership conflicts with the exhaustive regulation of § 59a sec. 1 sentence 1 of the Federal Lawyers’ Act (Bundesrechtsanwaltsordnung – BRAO), which does not list the professions of physician and pharmacist. The Federal Court of Justice suspended the proceedings and referred it to the Federal Constitutional Court for review.

Key Considerations of the Senate:

  1. The question referred to the Court must be limited to the part of the reviewed § 59a sec.1 sentence 1 BRAO that is essential for the decision of the regular courts. With regard to the concerned professions it must be limited to the cooperation of lawyers with physicians and pharmacists; regarding the form of cooperation it must be limited to the professional partnership.
  2. § 59a sec. 1 sentence 1 BRAO is incompatible with Art. 12 sec. 1 GG in so far as the provision precludes an association between lawyers and physicians as well as pharmacists for joint practicing of their professions within a professional partnership.
  3. a) It is true that the legislature pursues a legitimate purpose when interfering with the freedom to practice an occupation by limiting the professions permitted to combine in a professional partnership. The purpose of the provision is to ensure that the essential basic obligations of a lawyer stipulated in § 43a BRAO are complied with. These also include professional confidentiality, the prohibition to represent conflicting interests, as well as the duty to refrain from entering into professional relationships that compromise a lawyer’s professional independence.
  4. b) It follows from the principle of proportionality that a law restricting fundamental rights must be suitable, necessary and appropriate to achieve the purpose pursued by the legislature. Accordingly, a law is necessary if the legislature could not have chosen another equally effective means with no or less restrictive impact on fundamental rights to achieve this purpose. A law is appropriate if an overall balancing of the weight of the interference, the significance and the priority of the reasons justifying it does not exceed the limits of reasonableness.
  5. aa) To a large extent, the prohibition of a partnership with physicians and pharmacists is not necessary to ensure lawyers’ professional confidentiality; apart from that it is not appropriate.

(1) Violation of a lawyer’s obligation to maintain confidentiality under § 43a sec. 2 BRAO is subject to punishment according to § 203 sec. 1 no. 3 of the Criminal Code (Strafgesetzbuch – StGB). In principle, the legislature may bar those professions from joining a professional partnership for which a sufficient degree of confidentiality does not appear to be guaranteed. Following this approach, the legislature ruled out such deficits only for those professions mentioned in § 59a sec. 1 BRAO and hence permitted them to establish professional partnerships with lawyers.

(2) The legislative decision to thus exclude physicians and pharmacists from the group of professions permitted to establish a partnership is, however, generally already not necessary in order to safeguard the clients’ interest in confidentiality. When hiring an inter-professional partnership it is generally expected that client-related information is shared with the non-legal partners; sharing client-related information therefore does not constitute a breach of confidentiality. At least to a large extent, the prohibition of such a partnership is not necessary for protecting a lawyer`s confidentiality vis-à-vis third parties. Like lawyers, both physicians as well as pharmacists are obliged to maintain professional confidentiality. This obligation fully applies to all facts not generally known and which are confided to a professional in his or her professional capacity as physician or pharmacist or which he or she becomes aware of; a violation is subject to punishment under § 203 sec. 1 no. 1 StGB.

(3) In so far as the facts have not been confided or made known to the physician or pharmacist in this professional capacity, the non-legal partner is not obliged to maintain confidentiality. However, the requirement of proportionality stricto sensu is no longer met if the prohibition to establish a partnership is based solely on the fact that the non-legal partner is not obliged to maintain confidentiality in these cases. In order to provide competent legal advice and to be economically successful it may be essential for a law firm to offer legal assistance in specialised fields and establish to that end a permanent partnership with members of suitable professions. The resulting increased endangerment of confidentiality is small and does not justify the substantial interference with the freedom to practice an occupation. Notably, the legislature did not assume such additional risks in the case of those professions mentioned in § 59a sec. 1 BRAO and hence permitted them to establish partnerships with lawyers. But even in cooperation with professions allowed to establish a professional partnership under the above provision, situations might occur in which the non-legal partner becomes aware of circumstances that are subject to the lawyer’s confidentiality but not to his own professional obligation to maintain confidentiality. Furthermore, pursuant to § 30 sentence 1 and § 33 of the Federal Lawyers’ Rules of Professional Practice (Berufsordnung für Rechtsanwälte – BORA) it must be ensured that also the non-legal partners and the professional partnership observe the lawyers’ rules of professional practice.

(4)Prohibiting professional partnerships of lawyers with physicians and pharmacists is, to a large extent, not necessary or at least not appropriate for safeguarding the lawyer’s rights to refuse to testify. According to the relevant rules of procedure, physicians and pharmacists can claim their own right to refuse to testify. If, in individual cases, there should be situations in which the non-legal person’s right to refuse to testify falls behind the lawyer’s right to refuse to testify, the risk resulting from the reduced degree of protection of confidentiality is low and does not differ from the risk the legislature accepts in the context of those professions it has already granted the permission to establish a professional partnership.

(5) Nor does safeguarding the rights to protection against seizure under criminal procedural law, which also serves to protect the lawyer-client relationship, make it necessary to prohibit a professional partnership with physicians and pharmacists. The protection of these professional groups against seizure does not fall behind the protection lawyers can claim. Rather, § 97 of the Code of Criminal Procedure (Strafprozeßordnung – StPO) links the protection against consfiscation to the right to refuse to testify under § 53 sec. 1 sentence 1 nos. 1 to 3b StPO and is therefore applicable to lawyers as well as physicians and pharmacists.

(6)  Investigation measures in the repressive area of law enforcement, measures of protection against risks of public safety as well as measures for the prevention of criminal offenses are subject to different protection levels, which may affect the clients’ interest in confidentiality. Pursuant to § 160a sec. 1 StPO, the prohibition to take or use evidence applies in favour of lawyers is an absolute prohibition while the prohibition that applies in favour of physicians and pharmacists is relative pursuant to § 160a sec. 2 in conjunction with § 53 sec. 1 no. 3 StPO. However, also the professions mentioned in § 59a sec. 1 BRAO and that are thus permitted to establish a professional partnership are only subject to such a relative protection; in this respect, the legislature accepts a limited weakening of the clients’ interest in confidentiality in favour of the freedom to practice an occupation.

  1. bb) A prohibition of partnerships between lawyers and physicians or pharmacists might still be necessary to protect a lawyer’s independence. However, also in that regard the prohibition is at least not appropriate.

(1) When several professions work in a partnership, impairments of the professional independence of individual partners – be it because the other partners’ interests are considered in order to avoid or solve conflicts of interest or due to prevailing power structures – can never be ruled out completely. The legislature’s assumption that it is necessary to meet risks to the professional independence is therefore plausible and not objectionable.

(2) Compared to the combinations of professions permitted to establish a partnership according to § 59a BRAO, the inter-professional cooperation of lawyers with physicians and pharmacists does not entail an increased potential endangerment of the lawyers’ independence so that its prohibition does not prove to be appropriate. Although, unlike the professions permitted to establish a partnership, an inter-professional cooperation between lawyers, physicians and pharmacists does not offer advice on business or commercial law issues in the broadest sense, this does not constitute a plausible reason for an increased need of protection in favour of the lawyer’s independence. To the contrary, the completely different field of professional activity of physicians and pharmacists rather confirms that the latter will show more respect for the independence of their legal partner alone because of their professional distance to legal issues.

The form of organisation at issue here does not increasingly jeopardise the independence either. Practicing a profession in a professional partnership does not exempt the respective professional from his or her legal obligations regarding their profession (cf. § 6 sec. 1 of the Act on Partnership Corporations Partnerschaftsgesellschaftsgesetz – PartGG). Furthermore, the managerial authority of the individual partner cannot be restricted with regard to the practicing of his or her profession (cf. § 6 sec. 2 PartGG). In addition, the protection mechanisms in the already mentioned Federal Lawyers’ Rules of Professional Practice apply irrespective of the corporate structure.

  1. cc) The objective to avoid conflicts of interests does not justify a prohibition of professional partnerships between lawyers and physicians or pharmacists either.

(1) In accordance with § 43a sec. 4 BRAO and the more detailed provisions of § 3 BORA, lawyers are prohibited to represent conflicting interests. Essential parts of this prohibition are secured under criminal law by § 356 StGB pursuant to which a violation of the lawyer-client relationship is punishable. The professional codes of conduct for physicians and pharmacists do not have corresponding provisions; furthermore, physicians and pharmacists cannot be offenders under § 356 StGB. To forgo comparable provisions appears reasonable since physicians and pharmacists normally do not enter into an adversary relationship with third parties when acting in the interest of their patients. However, not all professions listed in § 59a BRAO are required to represent the interests of one party only as stipulated in § 43a sec. 4 BRAO, § 3 BORA. Only patent lawyers and, within the very limited scope of § 392 of the Fiscal Code (Abgabenordnung – AO), also tax consultants, tax representatives, auditors and certified accountants may become criminally liable for violating the lawyer-client relationship. Generally, the legal partner must therefore be compelled, in accordance with § 30 sentence 1 BORA, to contractually commit the non-legal partners to comply with the lawyers’ rules of professional practice. In accordance with § 33 sec. 2 BORA, a lawyer must furthermore prevent, by measures that take effect throughout the partnership, that the prohibition to represent conflicting interests is disregarded.

(2) Within this narrow scope, when permitting professional partnerships under § 59a sec. 1 BRAO, also the legislature accepted that in inter-professional cooperations risks to the lawyer’s integrity cannot be ruled out completely. A partnership with physicians and pharmacists in comparison to one with professions permitted for partnership does not entail a specifically increased endangerment of the lawyer’s integrity. Thus, also against that background the specific prohibition to establish a partnership constitutes an inappropriate interference with their freedom to practice an occupation.


The translations of Federal Constitutional Court decisions constitute official works pursuant to § 5 sec. 2 of the Act on Copyright and Related Rights (Gesetz über Urheberrecht und verwandte Schutzrechte – UrhG) and therefore do not enjoy copyright protection. However, those works may not be changed (§ 62 sec. 1 to 3 UrhG) and the source always has to be acknowledged (§ 63 sec. 1 and 2 UrhG). Under the Terms and Conditions of the Creative Commons Licence BY-SA 3.0 <https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/3.0/legalcode> the works may only be reproduced giving appropriate credit and under the same licence as the original.

The translations of Federal Constitutional Court decisions are intended for information purposes only; the sole authoritative versions are the official German originals. Although the translations were prepared with the utmost care, the Federal Constitutional Court is not responsible fot their accuracy and completeness.

Judgment of the Second Senate of 07 September 2011 – 2 BvR 987/10


The translations of Federal Constitutional Court decisions constitute official works pursuant to § 5 sec. 2 of the Act on Copyright and Related Rights (Gesetz über Urheberrecht und verwandte Schutzrechte – UrhG) and therefore do not enjoy copyright protection. However, those works may not be changed (§ 62 sec. 1 to 3 UrhG) and the source always has to be acknowledged (§ 63 sec. 1 and 2 UrhG). Under the Terms and Conditions of the Creative Commons Licence BY-SA 3.0 <https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/3.0/legalcode> the works may only be reproduced giving appropriate credit and under the same licence as the original.

The translations of Federal Constitutional Court decisions are intended for information purposes only; the sole authoritative versions are the official German originals. Although the translations were prepared with the utmost care, the Federal Constitutional Court is not responsible fot their accuracy and completeness.

Judgment of the Second Senate of 04 May 2011 – 2 BvR 2365/09


The translations of Federal Constitutional Court decisions constitute official works pursuant to § 5 sec. 2 of the Act on Copyright and Related Rights (Gesetz über Urheberrecht und verwandte Schutzrechte – UrhG) and therefore do not enjoy copyright protection. However, those works may not be changed (§ 62 sec. 1 to 3 UrhG) and the source always has to be acknowledged (§ 63 sec. 1 and 2 UrhG). Under the Terms and Conditions of the Creative Commons Licence BY-SA 3.0 <https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/3.0/legalcode> the works may only be reproduced giving appropriate credit and under the same licence as the original.

The translations of Federal Constitutional Court decisions are intended for information purposes only; the sole authoritative versions are the official German originals. Although the translations were prepared with the utmost care, the Federal Constitutional Court is not responsible fot their accuracy and completeness.

Judgment of the First Senate of 02 March 2010 – 1 BvR 256/08

 – 1 BvR 256/08 – – 1 BvR 263/08 – – 1 BvR 586/08 –

Headscarf Ban (Kopftuchverbot) [2 BvR 1436/02]

Judgment 28th May 1993 – Schwangerschaftsabbruch [2 BvF 2/90]