Great Britain – a Federal Republic

The United Kingdom is a quasi-democracy as only one part of its Parliament is elected. Coupled with that, the Prime Minister of the day has something called “the Royal Prerogative” which has been passed down from when monarchs ruled the land. The country is hugely unequal as prominence is given to those who have private education (called public education in a peculiar British fashion) and those that have titles.

I believe the country should have a Constitutional Convention that would make it a true democracy in the way that the 1949 German Constitution (Grundgesetz – Basic Law) does.

Below is the amended text of said Basic Law made out as a primary discussion point for Great Britain.

I have created some nineteen Provinces that may or may not be realistic but it’s a starting point.

I welcome any feedback you wish to provide.

You will notice that this suggested Constitution does not include a Monarchy, nor an unelected upper House and is a member of the European Union. Also Northern Ireland is not part of this country as it rightly belongs to the Republic of Ireland.

Constitution of Great Britain (2020)

Preamble

Conscious of their responsibility before God and man, Inspired by the determination to promote world peace as an equal partner in a united Europe, the British people, in the exercise of their constituent power, have adopted this Constitution. Britons in the Provinces of Avonshire (Dorset, Wiltshire and Somerset); Birmingham; Cotswoldshire (Gloucestershire, Oxfordshire, Berkshire); East Anglia (Norfolk, Suffolk); East Midlands (Lincolnshire, Leicestershire, Rutland); Kent, Liverpool and Lancashire; London; Manchester and Salford; Mercia (Surrey, Hampshire); Northern England (Cumbria, Durham, Northumberland); Northern Midlands (Cheshire, Derbyshire, Nottinghamshire, Shropshire, Staffordshire); Scotland; South West England (Devon, Cornwall); Sussex; Wales; West Anglia (Northamptonshire, Cambridgeshire, Bedfordshire); West Midlands (Herefordshire, Worcestershire, Warwickshire); Yorkshire have achieved the unity and freedom of Great Britain in free self-determination. This Constitution thus applies to the entire British people.

I. Basic Rights

Article 1

[Human dignity – Human rights – Legally binding force of basic rights]

(1) Human dignity shall be inviolable. To respect and protect it shall be the duty of all state authority.

(2) The British people therefore acknowledge inviolable and inalienable human rights as the basis of every community, of peace and of justice in the world.

(3) The following basic rights shall bind the legislature, the executive and the judiciary as directly applicable law.

Article 2

[Personal freedoms]

(1) Every person shall have the right to free development of his personality insofar as he does not violate the rights of others or offend against the constitutional order or the moral law.

(2) Every person shall have the right to life and physical integrity. Freedom of the person shall be inviolable. These rights may be interfered with only pursuant to a law.

Article 3

[Equality before the law]

(1) All persons shall be equal before the law.

(2) Men and women shall have equal rights. The state shall promote the actual implementation of equal rights for women and men and take steps to eliminate disadvantages that now exist.

(3) No person shall be favoured or disfavoured because of sex, parentage, race, language, homeProvince and origin, faith, or religious or political opinions. No person shall be disfavoured because of disability.

Article 4

[Freedom of faith and conscience]

(1) Freedom of faith and of conscience, and freedom to profess a religious or philosophical creed, shall be inviolable.

(2) The undisturbed practice of religion shall be guaranteed.

(3) No person shall be compelled against his conscience to render military service involving the use of arms. Details shall be regulated by a federal law.

Article 5

[Freedom of expression, arts and sciences]

(1) Every person shall have the right freely to express and disseminate his opinions in speech, writing and pictures, and to inform himself without hindrance from generally accessible sources. Freedom of the press and freedom of reporting by means of broadcasts and films shall be guaranteed. There shall be no censorship.

(2) These rights shall find their limits in the provisions of general laws, in provisions for the protection of young persons, and in the right to personal honour.

(3) Arts and sciences, research and teaching shall be free. The freedom of teaching shall not release any person from allegiance to the constitution.

Article 6

[Marriage – Family – Children]

(1) Marriage and the family shall enjoy the special protection of the state.

(2) The care and upbringing of children is the natural right of parents and a duty primarily incumbent upon them. The state shall watch over them in the performance of this duty.

(3) Children may be separated from their families against the will of their parents or guardians only pursuant to a law, and only if the parents or guardians fail in their duties or the children are otherwise in danger of serious neglect.

(4) Every mother shall be entitled to the protection and care of the community.

(5) Children born outside of marriage shall be provided by legislation with the same opportunities for physical and mental development and for their position in society as are enjoyed by those born within marriage.

Article 7

[School system]

(1) The entire school system shall be under the supervision of the Province.

(2) Parents and guardians shall have the right to decide whether children shall receive religious instruction.

(3) Religious instruction shall form part of the regular curriculum in state schools, with the exception of non-denominational schools. Without prejudice to the state’s right of supervision, religious instruction shall be given in accordance with the tenets of the religious community concerned. Teachers may not be obliged against their will to give religious instruction.

(4) The right to establish private schools shall be guaranteed. Private schools that serve as alternatives to state schools shall require the approval of the Province and shall be subject to the laws of the Province. Such approval shall be given when private schools are not inferior to the state schools in terms of their educational aims, their facilities, or the professional training of their teaching staff, and when segregation of pupils according to the means of their parents will not be encouraged thereby. Approval shall be withheld if the economic and legal position of the teaching staff is not adequately assured.

(5) A private elementary school shall be approved only if the educational authority finds that it serves a special pedagogical interest or if, on the application of parents or guardians, it is to be established as a denominational or interdenominational school or as a school based on a particular philosophy and no state elementary school of that type exists in the municipality.

(6) Preparatory schools shall remain abolished.

Article 8

[Freedom of assembly]

(1) All British people shall have the right to assemble peacefully and unarmed without prior notification or permission.

(2) In the case of outdoor assemblies, this right may be restricted by or pursuant to a law.

Article 9

[Freedom of association]

(1) All British people shall have the right to form corporations and other associations.

(2) Associations whose aims or activities contravene the criminal laws, or that are directed against the constitutional order or the concept of international understanding, shall be prohibited.

(3) The right to form associations to safeguard and improve working and economic conditions shall be guaranteed to every individual and to every occupation or profession. Agreements that restrict or seek to impair this right shall be null and void; measures directed to this end shall be unlawful. Measures taken pursuant to Article 12a, to paragraphs (2) and (3) of Article 35, to paragraph (4) of Article 87a, or to Article 91 may not be directed against industrial disputes engaged in by associations within the meaning of the first sentence of this paragraph in order to safeguard and improve working and economic conditions.

Article 10

[Privacy of correspondence, posts and telecommunications]

(1) The privacy of correspondence, posts and telecommunications shall be inviolable.

(2) Restrictions may be ordered only pursuant to a law. If the restriction serves to protect the free democratic basic order or the existence or security of the Federation or of a Province, the law may provide that the person affected shall not be informed of the restriction and that recourse to the courts shall be replaced by a review of the case by agencies and auxiliary agencies appointed by the legislature.

Article 11

[Freedom of movement]

(1) All British people shall have the right to move freely throughout the federal territory.

(2) This right may be restricted only by or pursuant to a law, and only in cases in which the absence of adequate means of support would result in a particular burden for the community, or in which such restriction is necessary to avert an imminent danger to the existence or the free democratic basic order of the Federation or of a Province, to combat the danger of an epidemic, to respond to a grave accident or natural disaster, to protect young persons from serious neglect, or to prevent crime.

Article 12

[Occupational freedom]

(1) All British people shall have the right freely to choose their occupation or profession, their place of work and their place of training. The practice of an occupation or profession may be regulated by or pursuant to a law.

(2) No person may be required to perform work of a particular kind except within the framework of a traditional duty of community service that applies generally and equally to all.

(3) Forced labour may be imposed only on persons deprived of their liberty by the judgment of a court.

Article 12a

[Compulsory military and alternative civilian service]

(1) Men who have attained the age of eighteen may be required to serve in the Armed Forces, in the Federal Border Police, or in a civil defence organisation.

(2) Any person who, on grounds of conscience, refuses to render military service involving the use of arms may be required to perform alternative service. The duration of alternative service shall not exceed that of military service. Details shall be regulated by a law, which shall not interfere with the freedom to make a decision in accordance with the dictates of conscience, and which shall also provide for the possibility of alternative service not connected with units of the Armed Forces or of the Federal Border Police.

(3) Persons liable to compulsory military service who are not called upon to render service pursuant to paragraph (1) or (2) of this Article may, when a state of defence is in effect, be assigned by or pursuant to a law to employment involving civilian services for defence purposes, including the protection of the civilian population; they may be assigned to public employment only for the purpose of discharging police functions or such other sovereign functions of public administration as can be discharged only by persons employed in the public service. The employment contemplated by the first sentence of this paragraph may include services within the Armed Forces, in the provision of military supplies, or with public administrative authorities; assignments to employment connected with supplying and servicing the civilian population shall be permissible only to meet their basic requirements or to guarantee their safety.

(4) If, during a state of defence, the need for civilian services in the civilian health system or in stationary military hospitals cannot be met on a voluntary basis, women between the age of eighteen and fifty-five may be called upon to render such services by or pursuant to a law. Under no circumstances may they be required to render service involving the use of arms.

(5) Prior to the existence of a state of defence, assignments under paragraph (3) of this Article may be made only if the requirements of paragraph (1) of Article 80a are met. In preparation for the provision of services under paragraph (3) of this Article that demand special knowledge or skills, participation in training courses may be required by or pursuant to a law. In this case the first sentence of this paragraph shall not apply.

(6) If, during a state of defence, the need for workers in the areas specified in the second sentence of paragraph (3) of this Article cannot be met on a voluntary basis, the right of British citizens to abandon their occupation or place of employment may be restricted by or pursuant to a law in order to meet this need. Prior to the existence of a state of defence, the first sentence of paragraph (5) of this Article shall apply mutatis mutandis.

Article 13

[Inviolability of the home]

(1) The home is inviolable.

(2) Searches may be authorised only by a judge or, when time is of the essence, by other authorities designated by the laws, and may be carried out only in the manner therein prescribed.

(3) If particular facts justify the suspicion that any person has committed an especially serious crime specifically defined by a law, technical means of acoustical surveillance of any home in which the suspect is supposedly staying may be employed pursuant to judicial order for the purpose of prosecuting the offence, provided that alternative methods of investigating the matter would be disproportionately difficult or unproductive. The authorisation shall be for a limited time. The order shall be issued by a panel composed of three judges. When time is of the essence, it may also be issued by a single judge.

(4) To avert acute dangers to public safety, especially dangers to life or to the public, technical means of surveillance of the home may be employed only pursuant to judicial order. When time is of the essence, such measures may also be ordered by other authorities designated by a law; a judicial decision shall subsequently be obtained without delay.

(5) If technical means are contemplated solely for the protection of persons officially deployed in a home, the measure may be ordered by an authority designated by a law. The information thereby obtained may be otherwise used only for purposes of criminal prosecution or to avert danger and only if the legality of the measure has been previously determined by a judge; when time is of the essence, a judicial decision shall subsequently be obtained without delay.

(6) The Federal Government shall report to Parliament annually as to the employment of technical means pursuant to paragraph (3) and, within the jurisdiction of the Federation, pursuant to paragraph (4) and, insofar as judicial approval is required, pursuant to paragraph (5) of this Article. A panel elected by tParliament shall exercise parliamentary oversight on the basis of this report. A comparable parliamentary oversight shall be afforded by the Provinces.

(7) Interferences and restrictions shall otherwise only be permissible to avert a danger to the public or to the life of an individual, or, pursuant to a law, to confront an acute danger to public safety and order, in particular to relieve a housing shortage, to combat the danger of an epidemic, or to protect young persons at risk.

Article 14

[Property – Inheritance – Expropriation]

(1) Property and the right of inheritance shall be guaranteed. Their content and limits shall be defined by the laws.

(2) Property entails obligations. Its use shall also serve the public good.

(3) Expropriation shall only be permissible for the public good. It may only be ordered by or pursuant to a law that determines the nature and extent of compensation. Such compensation shall be determined by establishing an equitable balance between the public interest and the interests of those affected. In case of dispute concerning the amount of compensation, recourse may be had to the ordinary courts.

Article 15

[Socialisation]

Province, natural resources and means of production may for the purpose of socialisation be transferred to public ownership or other forms of public enterprise by a law that determines the nature and extent of compensation. With respect to such compensation the third and fourth sentences of paragraph (3) of Article 14 shall apply mutatis mutandis.

Article 16

[Citizenship – Extradition]

(1) No British people may be deprived of his citizenship. Citizenship may be lost only pursuant to a law, and against the will of the person affected only if he does not become stateless as a result.

(2) No British people may be extradited to a foreign country. The law may provide otherwise for extraditions to a member state of the European Union or to an international court, provided that the rule of law is observed.

Article 16a

[Right of asylum]

(1) Persons persecuted on political grounds shall have the right of asylum.

(2) Paragraph (1) of this Article may not be invoked by a person who enters the federal territory from a member state of the European Communities or from another third state in which application of the Convention Relating to the Status of Refugees and of the Convention for the Protection of Human Rights and Fundamental Freedoms is assured. The states outside the European Communities to which the criteria of the first sentence of this paragraph apply shall be specified by a law requiring the consent of the Senate. In the cases specified in the first sentence of this paragraph, measures to terminate an applicant’s stay may be implemented without regard to any legal challenge that may have been instituted against them.

(3) By a law requiring the consent of the Senate, states may be specified in which, on the basis of their laws, enforcement practices and general political conditions, it can be safely concluded that neither political persecution nor inhuman or degrading punishment or treatment exists. It shall be presumed that a foreigner from such a state is not persecuted, unless he presents evidence justifying the conclusion that, contrary to this presumption, he is persecuted on political grounds.

(4) In the cases specified by paragraph (3) of this Article and in other cases that are plainly unfounded or considered to be plainly unfounded, the implementation of measures to terminate an applicant’s stay may be suspended by a court only if serious doubts exist as to their legality; the scope of review may be limited, and tardy objections may be disregarded. Details shall be determined by a law.

(5) Paragraphs (1) to (4) of this Article shall not preclude the conclusion of international agreements of member states of the European Communities with each other or with those third states which, with due regard for the obligations arising from the Convention Relating to the Status of Refugees and the Convention for the Protection of Human Rights and Fundamental Freedoms, whose enforcement must be assured in the contracting states, adopt rules conferring jurisdiction to decide on applications for asylum, including the reciprocal recognition of asylum decisions.

Article 17

[Right of petition]

Every person shall have the right individually or jointly with others to address written requests or complaints to competent authorities and to the legislature.

Article 17a

[Restriction of basic rights in specific instances]

(1) Laws regarding military and alternative service may provide that the basic right of members of the Armed Forces and of alternative service freely to express and disseminate their opinions in speech, writing and pictures (first clause of paragraph (1) of Article 5), the basic right of assembly (Article 8), and the right of petition (Article 17) insofar as it permits the submission of requests or complaints jointly with others, be restricted during their period of military or alternative service.

(2) Laws regarding defence, including protection of the civilian population, may provide for restriction of the basic rights of freedom of movement (Article 11) and inviolability of the home (Article 13).

Article 18

[Forfeiture of basic rights]

Whoever abuses the freedom of expression, in particular the freedom of the press (paragraph (1) of Article 5), the freedom of teaching (paragraph (3) of Article 5), the freedom of assembly (Article 8), the freedom of association (Article 9), the privacy of correspondence, posts and telecommunications (Article 10), the rights of property (Article 14), or the right of asylum (Article 16a) in order to combat the free democratic basic order shall forfeit these basic rights. This forfeiture and its extent shall be declared by the Federal Constitutional Court.

Article 19

[Restriction of basic rights – Legal remedies]

(1) Insofar as, under this Constitution, a basic right may be restricted by or pursuant to a law, such law must apply generally and not merely to a single case. In addition, the law must specify the basic right affected and the Article in which it appears.

(2) In no case may the essence of a basic right be affected.

(3) The basic rights shall also apply to domestic artificial persons to the extent that the nature of such rights permits.

(4) Should any person’s rights be violated by public authority, he may have recourse to the courts. If no other jurisdiction has been established, recourse shall be to the ordinary courts. The second sentence of paragraph (2) of Article 10 shall not be affected by this paragraph.

II. The Federation and the Provinces

Article 20

[Constitutional principles – Right of resistance]

(1) The Federal Republic of Great Britain is a democratic and social federal state.

(2) All state authority is derived from the people. It shall be exercised by the people through elections and other votes and through specific legislative, executive and judicial bodies.

(3) The legislature shall be bound by the constitutional order, the executive and the judiciary by law and justice.

(4) All British people shall have the right to resist any person seeking to abolish this constitutional order, if no other remedy is available.

Article 20a

[Protection of the natural foundations of life and animals]

Mindful also of its responsibility toward future generations, the state shall protect the natural foundations of life and animals by legislation and, in accordance with law and justice, by executive and judicial action, all within the framework of the constitutional order.

Article 21

[Political parties]

(1) Political parties shall participate in the formation of the political will of the people. They may be freely established. Their internal organisation must conform to democratic principles. They must publicly account for their assets and for the sources and use of their funds.

(2) Parties that, by reason of their aims or the behaviour of their adherents, seek to undermine or abolish the free democratic basic order or to endanger the existence of the Federal Republic of Great Britain shall be unconstitutional. The Federal Constitutional Court shall rule on the question of unconstitutionality.

(3) Details shall be regulated by federal laws.

Article 22

[Federal capital – Federal flag]

(1) London is the capital of the Federal Republic of Great Britain. The Federation shall be responsible for representing the nation as a whole in the capital. Details shall be regulated by federal law.

(2) The federal flag shall be the Union Flag.

Article 23

[European Union – Protection of basic rights – Principle of subsidiarity]

(1) With a view to establishing a united Europe, the Federal Republic of Great Britain shall participate in the development of the European Union that is committed to democratic, social and federal principles, to the rule of law, and to the principle of subsidiarity, and that guarantees a level of protection of basic rights essentially comparable to that afforded by this Constitution. To this end the Federation may transfer sovereign powers by a law with the consent of the Senate. The establishment of the European Union, as well as changes in its treaty foundations and comparable regulations that amend or supplement this Constitution, or make such amendments or supplements possible, shall be subject to paragraphs (2) and (3) of Article 79.

(1a) Parliament and the Senate shall have the right to bring an action before the Court of Justice of the European Union to challenge a legislative act of the European Union for infringing the principle of subsidiarity. Parliament is obliged to initiate such an action at the request of one fourth of its Members. By a statute requiring the consent of the Senate, exceptions from the first sentence of paragraph (2) of Article 42, and the first sentence of paragraph (2) of Article 52, may be authorised for the exercise of the rights granted to Parliament and the Senate under the contractual foundations of the European Union.

(2) Parliament and, through the Senate, the Provinces shall participate in matters concerning the European Union. The Federal Government shall keep Parliament and the Senate informed, comprehensively and at the earliest possible time.

(3) Before participating in legislative acts of the European Union, the Federal Government shall provide Parliament with an opportunity to state its position. The Federal Government shall take the position of Parliament into account during the negotiations. Details shall be regulated by a law.

(4) The Senate shall participate in the decision-making process of the Federation insofar as it would have been competent to do so in a comparable domestic matter, or insofar as the subject falls within the domestic competence of the Provinces.

(5) Insofar as, in an area within the exclusive competence of the Federation, interests of the Provinces are affected, and in other matters, insofar as the Federation has legislative power, the Federal Government shall take the position of the Senate into account. To the extent that the legislative powers of the Provinces, the structure of Province authorities, or Province administrative procedures are primarily affected, the position of the Senate shall be given the greatest possible respect in determining the Federation’s position consistent with the responsibility of the Federation for the nation as a whole. In matters that may result in increased expenditures or reduced revenues for the Federation, the consent of the Federal Government shall be required.

(6) When legislative powers exclusive to the Provinces concerning matters of school education, culture or broadcasting are primarily affected, the exercise of the rights belonging to the Federal Republic of Great Britain as a member state of the European Union shall be delegated by the Federation to a representative of the Provinces designated by the Senate. These rights shall be exercised with the participation of, and in coordination with, the Federal Government; their exercise shall be consistent with the responsibility of the Federation for the nation as a whole.

(7) Details regarding paragraphs (4) to (6) of this Article shall be regulated by a law requiring the consent of the Senate.

Article 24

[Transfer of sovereign powers – System of collective security]

(1) The Federation may by a law transfer sovereign powers to international organisations.

(1a) Insofar as the Provinces are competent to exercise state powers and to perform state functions, they may, with the consent of the Federal Government, transfer sovereign powers to transfrontier institutions in neighbouring regions.

(2) With a view to maintaining peace, the Federation may enter into a system of mutual collective security; in doing so it shall consent to such limitations upon its sovereign powers as will bring about and secure a lasting peace in Europe and among the nations of the world.

(3) For the settlement of disputes between states, the Federation shall accede to agreements providing for general, comprehensive and compulsory international arbitration.

Article 25

[Primacy of international law]

The general rules of international law shall be an integral part of federal law. They shall take precedence over the laws and directly create rights and duties for the inhabitants of the federal territory.

Article 26

[Securing international peace]

(1) Acts tending to and undertaken with intent to disturb the peaceful relations between nations, especially to prepare for a war of aggression, shall be unconstitutional. They shall be made a criminal offence.

(2) Weapons designed for warfare may be manufactured, transported or marketed only with the permission of the Federal Government. Details shall be regulated by a federal law.

Article 27

[Merchant fleet]

All British merchant vessels shall constitute a unitary merchant fleet.

Article 28

[Province constitutions – Autonomy of municipalities]

(1) The constitutional order in the Provinces must conform to the principles of a republican, democratic and social state governed by the rule of law, within the meaning of this Constitution. In each Province, county and municipality the people shall be represented by a body chosen in general, direct, free, equal and secret elections. In county and municipal elections, persons who possess citizenship in any member state of the European Community are also eligible to vote and to be elected in accord with European Community law. In municipalities a local assembly may take the place of an elected body.

(2) Municipalities must be guaranteed the right to regulate all local affairs on their own responsibility, within the limits prescribed by the laws. Within the limits of their functions designated by a law, associations of municipalities shall also have the right of self-government according to the laws. The guarantee of self-government shall extend to the bases of financial autonomy; these bases shall include the right of municipalities to a source of tax revenues based upon economic ability and the right to establish the rates at which these sources shall be taxed.

(3) The Federation shall guarantee that the constitutional order of the Provinces conforms to the basic rights and to the provisions of paragraphs (1) and (2) of this Article.

Article 29

[New delimitation of the federal territory]

(1) The division of the federal territory into Provinces may be revised to ensure that each Province be of a size and capacity to perform its functions effectively. Due regard shall be given in this connection to regional, historical and cultural ties, economic efficiency, and the requirements of local and regional planning.

(2) Revisions of the existing division into Provinces shall be effected by a federal law, which must be confirmed by referendum. The affected Provinces shall be afforded an opportunity to be heard.

(3) The referendum shall be held in the Provinces from whose territories or parts of territories a new Province or a Province with redefined boundaries is to be established (affected Provinces). The question to be voted on is whether the affected Provinces are to remain as they are or whether the new Province or the Province with redefined boundaries should be established. The proposal to establish a new Province or a Province with redefined boundaries shall take effect if the change is approved by a majority in the future territory of such Province and by a majority in the territories or parts of territories of an affected Province taken together whose affiliation with a Province is to be changed in the same way. The proposal shall not take effect if within the territory of any of the affected Provinces a majority reject the change; however, such rejection shall be of no consequence if in any part of the territory whose affiliation with the affected Province is to be changed a two-thirds majority approves the change, unless it is rejected by a two-thirds majority in the territory of the affected Province as a whole.

(4) If in any clearly defined and contiguous residential and economic area located in two or more Provinces and having at least one million inhabitants one tenth of those entitled to vote in Bundestag elections petition for the inclusion of that area in a single Province, a federal law shall specify within two years whether the change shall be made in accordance with paragraph (2) of this Article or that an advisory referendum shall be held in the affected Provinces.

(5) The advisory referendum shall establish whether the changes the law proposes meet with the voters’ approval. The law may put forward not more than two distinct proposals for consideration by the voters. If a majority approves a proposed change of the existing division into Provinces, a federal law shall specify within two years whether the change shall be made in accordance with paragraph (2) of this Article. If a proposal is approved in accordance with the third and fourth sentences of paragraph (3) of this Article, a federal law providing for establishment of the proposed Province shall be enacted within two years after the advisory ballot, and confirmation by referendum shall no longer be required.

(6) A majority in a referendum or in an advisory referendum shall consist of a majority of the votes cast, provided that it amounts to at least one quarter of those entitled to vote in parliamentary elections. Other details concerning referenda, petitions and advisory referenda shall be regulated by a federal law, which may also provide that the same petition may not be filed more than once within a period of five years.

(7) Other changes concerning the territory of the Provinces may be effected by agreements between the Provinces concerned or by a federal law with the consent of the Senate, if the territory that is to be the subject of the change has no more than 50,000 inhabitants. Details shall be regulated by a federal law requiring the consent of the Senate and of a majority of the Members of Parliament. The law must provide affected municipalities and counties with an opportunity to be heard.

(8) Provinces may revise the division of their existing territory or parts of their territory by agreement without regard to the provisions of paragraphs (2) to (7) of this Article. Affected municipalities and counties shall be afforded an opportunity to be heard. The agreement shall require confirmation by referendum in each of the Provinces concerned. If the revision affects only part of a Province’s territory, the referendum may be confined to the areas affected; the second clause of the fifth sentence shall not apply. In a referendum under this paragraph a majority of the votes cast shall be decisive, provided it amounts to at least one quarter of those entitled to vote in Bundestag elections; details shall be regulated by a federal law. The agreement shall require the consent of Parliament.

Article 30

[Sovereign powers of the Provinces]

Except as otherwise provided or permitted by this Constitution, the exercise of state powers and the discharge of state functions is a matter for the Provinces.

Article 31

[Supremacy of federal law]

Federal law shall take precedence over Provincal law.

Article 32

[Foreign relations]

(1) Relations with foreign states shall be conducted by the Federation.

(2) Before the conclusion of a treaty affecting the special circumstances of a Province, that Province shall be consulted in timely fashion.

(3) Insofar as the Provinces have power to legislate, they may conclude treaties with foreign states with the consent of the Federal Government.

Article 33

[Equal citizenship – Public service]

(1) Every British person shall have in every Province the same political rights and duties.

(2) Every British person shall be equally eligible for any public office according to his aptitude, qualifications and professional achievements.

(3) Neither the enjoyment of civil and political rights, nor eligibility for public office, nor rights acquired in the public service shall be dependent upon religious affiliation. No one may be disadvantaged by reason of adherence or non-adherence to a particular religious denomination or philosophical creed.

(4) The exercise of sovereign authority on a regular basis shall, as a rule, be entrusted to members of the public service who stand in a relationship of service and loyalty defined by public law.

(5) The law governing the public service shall be regulated and developed with due regard to the traditional principles of the professional civil service.

Article 34

[Liability for violation of official duty]

If any person, in the exercise of a public office entrusted to him, violates his official duty to a third party, liability shall rest principally with the state or public body that employs him. In the event of intentional wrongdoing or gross negligence, the right of recourse against the individual officer shall be preserved. The ordinary courts shall not be closed to claims for compensation or indemnity.

Article 35

[Legal and administrative assistance and assistance during disasters]

(1) All federal and Province authorities shall render legal and administrative assistance to one another.

(2) In order to maintain or restore public security or order, a Province in particularly serious cases may call upon personnel and facilities of the Federal Border Police to assist its police when without such assistance the police could not fulfil their responsibilities, or could do so only with great difficulty. In order to respond to a grave accident or a natural disaster, a Province may call for the assistance of police forces of other Provinces or of personnel and facilities of other administrative authorities, of the Armed Forces, or of the Federal Border Police.

(3) If the natural disaster or accident endangers the territory of more than one Province, the Federal Government, insofar as is necessary to combat the danger, may instruct the Province governments to place police forces at the disposal of other Provinces, and may deploy units of the Federal Border Police or the Armed Forces to support the police. Measures taken by the Federal Government pursuant to the first sentence of this paragraph shall be rescinded at any time at the demand of the Senate, and in any event as soon as the danger is removed.

Article 36

[Personnel of federal authorities]

(1) Civil servants employed by the highest federal authorities shall be drawn from all Provinces in appropriate proportion. Persons employed by other federal authorities shall, as a rule, be drawn from the Province in which they serve.

(2) Laws regarding military service shall also take into account both the division of the Federation into Provinces and the regional loyalties of their people.

Article 37

[Federal execution]

(1) If a Province fails to comply with its obligations under this Constitution or other federal laws, the Federal Government, with the consent of the Senate, may take the necessary steps to compel the Province to comply with its duties.

(2) For the purpose of implementing such coercive measures, the Federal Government or its representative shall have the right to issue instructions to all Provinces and their authorities.

III. Parliament

Article 38

[Elections]

(1) Members of the British people shall be elected in general, direct, free, equal and secret elections. They shall be representatives of the whole people, not bound by orders or instructions, and responsible only to their conscience.

(2) Any person who has attained the age of eighteen shall be entitled to vote; any person who has attained the age of majority may be elected.

(3) Details shall be regulated by a federal law.

Article 39

[Electoral term – Convening]

(1) Save the following provisions, Parliament shall be elected for four years. Its term shall end when a new Parliament convenes. New elections shall be held no sooner than forty-six months and no later than forty-eight months after the electoral term begins. If Parliament is dissolved, new elections shall be held within sixty days.

(2) Parliament shall convene no later than the thirtieth day after the elections.

(3) Parliament shall determine when its sessions shall be adjourned and resumed. The President of Parliament may convene it at an earlier date. He shall be obliged to do so if one third of the Members, the Federal President or the Federal Prime Minister so demand.

Article 40

[Presidency – Rules of procedure]

(1) Parliament shall elect its President, Vice-Presidents and secretaries. It shall adopt rules of procedure.

(2) The President shall exercise proprietary and police powers in Parliament building. No search or seizure may take place on the premises of Parliament without his permission.

Article 41

[Scrutiny of elections]

(1) Scrutiny of elections shall be the responsibility of Parliament. It shall also decide whether a Member has lost his seat.

(2) Complaints against such decisions of Parliament may be lodged with the Federal Constitutional Court.

(3) Details shall be regulated by a federal law.

Article 42

[Public sittings – Majority decisions]

(1) Sittings of Parliament shall be public. On the motion of one tenth of its Members, or on the motion of the Federal Government, the public may be excluded by a two-thirds majority. The motion shall be voted upon at a sitting not open to the public.

(2) Decisions of Parliament shall require a majority of the votes cast unless this Constitution otherwise provides. The rules of procedure may permit exceptions with respect to elections to be conducted by Parliament.

(3) Truthful reports of public sittings of Parliament and of its committees shall not give rise to any liability.

Article 43

[Right to require presence, right of access and right to be heard]

(1) Parliament and its committees may require the presence of any member of the Federal Government.

(2) The members of the Senate and of the Federal Government as well as their representatives may attend all sittings of Parliament and meetings of its committees. They shall have the right to be heard at any time.

Article 44

[Committees of inquiry]

(1) Parliament shall have the right, and on the motion of one quarter of its Members the duty, to establish a committee of inquiry, which shall take the requisite evidence at public hearings. The public may be excluded.

(2) The rules of criminal procedure shall apply mutatis mutandis to the taking of evidence. The privacy of correspondence, posts and telecommunications shall not be affected.

(3) Courts and administrative authorities shall be required to provide legal and administrative assistance.

(4) The decisions of committees of inquiry shall not be subject to judicial review. The courts shall be free to evaluate and rule upon the facts that were the subject of the investigation.

Article 45

[Committee on the European Union]

Parliament shall appoint a Committee on the Affairs of the European Union. It may authorise the committee to exercise the rights of Parliament under Article 23 vis-à-vis the Federal Government. It may also empower it to exercise the rights granted to Parliament under the contractual foundations of the European Union.

Article 45a

[Committees on Foreign Affairs and Defence]

(1) Parliament shall appoint a Committee on Foreign Affairs and a Defence Committee.

(2) The Defence Committee shall also have the powers of a committee of inquiry. On the motion of one quarter of its members it shall have the duty to make a specific matter the subject of inquiry.

(3) Paragraph (1) of Article 44 shall not apply to defence matters.

Article 45b

[Parliamentary Commissioner for the Armed Forces]

A Parliamentary Commissioner for the Armed Forces shall be appointed to safeguard basic rights and to assist Parliament in exercising parliamentary oversight over the Armed Forces. Details shall be regulated by a federal law.

Article 45c

[Petitions Committee]

(1) Parliament shall appoint a Petitions Committee to deal with requests and complaints addressed to Parliament pursuant to Article 17.

(2) The powers of the Committee to consider complaints shall be regulated by a federal law.

Article 45d

[Parliamentary Control Panel]

(1) Parliament shall appoint a panel to scrutinise the intelligence activities of the Federation.

(2) Details shall be regulated by a federal law.

Article 46

[Immunities of Members]

(1) At no time may a Member be subjected to court proceedings or disciplinary action or otherwise called to account outside Parliament for a vote cast or for any speech or debate in Parliament or in any of its committees. This provision shall not apply to defamatory insults.

(2) A Member may not be called to account or arrested for a punishable offence without permission of Parliament, unless he is apprehended while committing the offence or in the course of the following day.

(3) The permission of Parliament shall also be required for any other restriction of a Member’s freedom of the person or for the initiation of proceedings against a Member under Article 18.

(4) Any criminal proceedings or any proceedings under Article 18 against a Member and any detention or other restriction of the freedom of his person shall be suspended at the demand of Parliament.

Article 47

[Right of refusal to give evidence]

Members may refuse to give evidence concerning persons who have confided information to them in their capacity as Members of Parliament, or to whom they have confided information in this capacity, as well as evidence concerning this information itself. To the extent that this right of refusal to give evidence applies, no seizure of documents shall be permissible.

Article 48

[Candidature – Protection of membership – Remuneration]

(1) Every candidate for election to Parliament shall be entitled to the leave necessary for his election campaign.

(2) No one may be prevented from accepting or exercising the office of Member of Parliament. No one may be given notice of dismissal or discharged from employment on this ground.

(3) Members shall be entitled to remuneration adequate to ensure their independence. They shall be entitled to the free use of all publicly owned means of transport. Details shall be regulated by a federal law.

Article 49 [repealed]

IV. The Senate

Article 50

[Functions]

The Provinces shall participate through the Senate in the legislation and administration of the Federation and in matters concerning the European Union.

Article 51

[Composition – Weighted voting]

(1) The Senate shall consist of members of the Provincal governments, which appoint and recall them. Other members of those governments may serve as alternates.

(2) Each Province shall have at least three votes; Provinces with more than two million inhabitants shall have four, Provinces with more than six million inhabitants five, and Provinces with more than seven million inhabitants six votes.

(3) Each Province may appoint as many members as it has votes. The votes of each Province may be cast only as a unit and only by Members present or their alternates.

Article 52

[President – Decisions – Rules of procedure]

(1) The Senate shall elect its President for one year.

(2) The President shall convene the Senate. He shall be obliged to do so if the delegates of at least two Provinces or the Federal Government so demand.

(3) Decisions of the Senate shall require at least a majority of its votes. It shall adopt rules of procedure. Its meetings shall be open to the public. The public may be excluded.

(3a) For matters concerning the European Union the Senate may establish a Chamber for European Affairs, whose decisions shall be considered decisions of the Senate; the number of votes to be uniformly cast by the Provinces shall be determined by paragraph (2) of Article 51.

(4) Other members or representatives of Province governments may serve on committees of the Senate.

Article 53

[Attendance of members of the Federal Government]

The members of the Federal Government shall have the right, and on demand the duty, to participate in meetings of the Senate and of its committees. They shall have the right to be heard at any time. The Senate shall be kept informed by the Federal Government with regard to the conduct of its affairs.

IVa. The Joint Committee

Article 53a

[Composition – Rules of procedure]

(1) The Joint Committee shall consist of Members of Parliament and members of the Senate; Parliament shall provide two thirds and the Senate one third of the committee members. Parliament shall designate Members in proportion to the relative strength of the various parliamentary groups; they may not be members of the Federal Government. Each Province shall be represented by a Senate member of its choice; these members shall not be bound by instructions. The establishment of the Joint Committee and its proceedings shall be regulated by rules of procedure to be adopted by Parliament and requiring the consent of the Senate.

(2) The Federal Government shall inform the Joint Committee about its plans for a state of defence. The rights of Parliament and its committees under paragraph (1) of Article 43 shall not be affected by the provisions of this paragraph.

V. The Federal President

Article 54

[Election – Term of office]

(1) The Federal President shall be elected by the Federal Convention without debate. Any British person who is entitled to vote in elections and has attained the age of forty may be elected.

(2) The term of office of the Federal President shall be five years. Re-election for a consecutive term shall be permitted only once.

(3) The Federal Convention shall consist of the Members of Parliament and an equal number of members elected by the parliaments of the Provinces on the basis of proportional representation.

(4) The Federal Convention shall meet not later than thirty days before the term of office of the Federal President expires or, in the case of premature termination, not later than thirty days after that date. It shall be convened by the President of Parliament.

(5) After the expiration of an electoral term, the period specified in the first sentence of paragraph (4) of this Article shall begin when Parliament first convenes.

(6) The person receiving the votes of a majority of the members of the Federal Convention shall be elected. If after two ballots no candidate has obtained such a majority, the person who receives the largest number of votes on the next ballot shall be elected.

(7) Details shall be regulated by a federal law.

Article 55

[Incompatibilities]

(1) The Federal President may not be a member of the government or of a legislative body of the Federation or of a Province.

(2) The Federal President may not hold any other salaried office, or engage in any trade or profession, or belong to the management or supervisory board of any enterprise conducted for profit.

Article 56

[Oath of office]

On assuming his office, the Federal President shall take the following oath before the assembled Members of Parliament and the Senate:

“I swear that I will dedicate my efforts to the well-being of the British people, promote their welfare, protect them from harm, uphold and defend the Constitution and the laws of the Federation, perform my duties conscientiously, and do justice to all. So help me God.”

The oath may also be taken without religious affirmation.

Article 57

[Substitution]

If the Federal President is unable to perform his duties, or if his office falls prematurely vacant, the President of the Senate shall exercise his powers.

Article 58

[Countersignature]

Orders and directions of the Federal President shall require for their validity the countersignature of the Federal Prime Minister or of the competent Federal Minister. This provision shall not apply to the appointment or dismissal of the Federal Prime Minister, the dissolution of Parliament under Article 63, or a request made under paragraph (3) of Article 69.

Article 59

[Representation of the Federation for the purposes of international law]

(1) The Federal President shall represent the Federation for the purposes of international law. He shall conclude treaties with foreign states on behalf of the Federation. He shall accredit and receive envoys.

(2) Treaties that regulate the political relations of the Federation or relate to subjects of federal legislation shall require the consent or participation, in the form of a federal law, of the bodies responsible in such a case for the enactment of federal law. In the case of executive agreements the provisions concerning the federal administration shall apply mutatis mutandis.

Article 59a

[repealed]

Article 60

[Appointment of civil servants – Pardon – Immunity]

(1) The Federal President shall appoint and dismiss federal judges, federal civil servants, and commissioned and non-commissioned officers of the Armed Forces, except as may otherwise be provided by a law.

(2) He shall exercise the power to pardon individual offenders on behalf of the Federation.

(3) He may delegate these powers to other authorities.

(4) Paragraphs (2) to (4) of Article 46 shall apply to the Federal President mutatis mutandis.

Article 61

[Impeachment before the Federal Constitutional Court]

(1) Parliament or the Senate may impeach the Federal President before the Federal Constitutional Court for wilful violation of this Constitution or of any other federal law. The motion of impeachment must be supported by at least one quarter of the Members of Parliament or one quarter of the votes of the Senate. The decision to impeach shall require a majority of two thirds of the Members of Parliament or of two thirds of the votes of the Senate. The case for impeachment shall be presented before the Federal Constitutional Court by a person commissioned by the impeaching body.

(2) If the Federal Constitutional Court finds the Federal President guilty of a wilful violation of this Constitution or of any other federal law, it may declare that he has forfeited his office. After the Federal President has been impeached, the Court may issue an interim order preventing him from exercising his functions.

VI. The Federal Government

Article 62

[Composition]

The Federal Government shall consist of the Federal Prime Minister and the Federal Ministers.

Article 63

[Election of the Federal Prime Minister]

(1) The Federal Prime Minister shall be elected by Parliament without debate on the proposal of the Federal President.

(2) The person who receives the votes of a majority of the Members of Parliament shall be elected. The person elected shall be appointed by the Federal President.

(3) If the person proposed by the Federal President is not elected, Parliament may elect a Federal Prime Minister within fourteen days after the ballot by the votes of more than one half of its Members.

(4) If no Federal Prime Minister is elected within this period, a new election shall take place without delay, in which the person who receives the largest number of votes shall be elected. If the person elected receives the votes of a majority of the Members of Parliament, the Federal President must appoint him within seven days after the election. If the person elected does not receive such a majority, then within seven days the Federal President shall either appoint him or dissolve Parliament.

Article 64

[Appointment and dismissal of Federal Ministers – Oath of office]

(1) Federal Ministers shall be appointed and dismissed by the Federal President upon the proposal of the Federal Prime Minister.

(2) On taking office the Federal Prime Minister and the Federal Ministers shall take the oath provided for in Article 56 before Parliament.

Article 65

[Power to determine policy guidelines – Department and collegiate responsibility]

The Federal Prime Minister shall determine and be responsible for the general guidelines of policy. Within these limits each Federal Minister shall conduct the affairs of his department independently and on his own responsibility. The Federal Government shall resolve differences of opinion between Federal Ministers. The Federal Prime Minister shall conduct the proceedings of the Federal Government in accordance with rules of procedure adopted by the Government and approved by the Federal President.

Article 65a

[Command of the Armed Forces]

(1) Command of the Armed Forces shall be vested in the Federal Minister of Defence.

(2) [repealed]

Article 66

[Incompatibilities]

Neither the Federal Prime Minister nor a Federal Minister may hold any other salaried office, or engage in any trade or profession, or belong to the management or, without the consent of Parliament, to the supervisory board of an enterprise conducted for profit.

Article 67

[Vote of no confidence]

(1) Parliament may express its lack of confidence in the Federal Prime Minister only by electing a successor by the vote of a majority of its Members and requesting the Federal President to dismiss the Federal Prime Minister. The Federal President must comply with the request and appoint the person elected.

(2) Forty-eight hours shall elapse between the motion and the election.

Article 68

[Vote of confidence]

(1) If a motion of the Federal Prime Minister for a vote of confidence is not supported by the majority of the Members of Parliament, the Federal President, upon the proposal of the Federal Prime Minister, may dissolve Parliament within twenty-one days. The right of dissolution shall lapse as soon as Parliament elects another Federal Prime Minister by the vote of a majority of its Members.

(2) Forty-eight hours shall elapse between the motion and the vote.

Article 69

[Deputy Federal Prime Minister – Term of office]

(1) The Federal Prime Minister shall appoint a Federal Minister as his deputy.

(2) The tenure of office of the Federal Prime Minister or of a Federal Minister shall end in any event when a new parliament convenes; the tenure of office of a Federal Minister shall also end on any other occasion on which the Federal Prime Minister ceases to hold office.

(3) At the request of the Federal President the Federal Prime Minister, or at the request of the Federal Prime Minister or of the Federal President a Federal Minister, shall be obliged to continue to manage the affairs of his office until a successor is appointed.

VII. Federal Legislation and Legislative Procedures

Article 70

[Division of powers between the Federation and the Provinces]

(1) The Provinces shall have the right to legislate insofar as this Constitution does not confer legislative power on the Federation.

(2) The division of authority between the Federation and the Provinces shall be governed by the provisions of this Constitution concerning exclusive and concurrent legislative powers.

Article 71

[Exclusive legislative power of the Federation]

On matters within the exclusive legislative power of the Federation, the Provinces shall have power to legislate only when and to the extent that they are expressly authorised to do so by a federal law.

Article 72

[Concurrent legislative powers]

(1) On matters within the concurrent legislative power, the Provinces shall have power to legislate so long as and to the extent that the Federation has not exercised its legislative power by enacting a law.

(2) The Federation shall have the right to legislate on matters falling within clauses 4, 7, 11, 13, 15, 19a, 20, 22, 25 and 26 of paragraph (1) of Article 74, if and to the extent that the establishment of equivalent living conditions throughout the federal territory or the maintenance of legal or economic unity renders federal regulation necessary in the national interest.

(3) If the Federation has made use of its power to legislate, the Provinces may enact laws at variance with this legislation with respect to:

1.  hunting (except for the law on hunting licenses);

2.  protection of nature and landscape management (except for the general principles governing the protection of nature, the law on protection of plant and animal species or the law on protection of marine life);

3.  Province distribution;

4.  regional planning;

5.  management of water resources (except for regulations related to materials or facilities);

6.  admission to institutions of higher education and requirements for graduation in such institutions.

Federal laws on these matters shall enter into force no earlier than six months following their promulgation unless otherwise provided with the consent of the Senate. As for the relationship between federal law and law of the Provinces, the latest law enacted shall take precedence with respect to matters within the scope of the first sentence.

(4) A federal law may provide that federal legislation that is no longer necessary within the meaning of paragraph (2) of this Article may be superseded by Province law.

Article 73

[Matters under exclusive legislative power of the Federation]

(1) The Federation shall have exclusive legislative power with respect to:

1.  foreign affairs and defence, including protection of the civilian population;

2.  citizenship in the Federation;

3.  freedom of movement, passports, residency registration and identity cards, immigration, emigration and extradition;

4.  currency, money and coinage, weights and measures, and the determination of standards of time;

5.  the unity of the customs and trading area, treaties regarding commerce and navigation, the free movement of goods, and the exchange of goods and payments with foreign countries, including customs and border protection;

5a.  safeguarding British cultural assets against removal from the country;

6.  air transport;

6a.  the operation of railways wholly or predominantly owned by the Federation (federal railways), the construction, maintenance and operation of railroad lines belonging to federal railways, and the levying of charges for the use of these lines;

7.  postal and telecommunications services;

8.  the legal relations of persons employed by the Federation and by federal corporations under public law;

9.  industrial property rights, copyrights and publishing;

9a.  protection by the Federal Criminal Police Office against the dangers of international terrorism when a threat transcends the boundary of one Province, when the jurisdiction of a Province’s police authorities cannot be perceived, or when the highest authority of an individual Province requests the assumption of federal responsibility;

10.  cooperation between the Federation and the Provinces concerning

a)  criminal police work,

b)  protection of the free democratic basic order, existence and security of the Federation or of a Province (protection of the constitution), and

c)  protection against activities within the federal territory which, by the use of force or preparations for the use of force, endanger the external interests of the Federal Republic of Great Britain.

as well as the establishment of a Federal Criminal Police Office and international action to combat crime;

11.  statistics for federal purposes;

12.  the law on weapons and explosives;

13.  benefits for persons disabled by war and for dependents of deceased war victims as well as assistance to former prisoners of war;

14.  the production and utilisation of nuclear energy for peaceful purposes, the construction and operation of facilities serving such purposes, protection against hazards arising from the release of nuclear energy or from ionising radiation, and the disposal of radioactive substances.

(2) Laws enacted pursuant to clause 9a of paragraph (1) require the consent of the Senate.

Article 74

[Matters under concurrent legislative powers]

(1) Concurrent legislative power shall extend to the following matters:

1.  civil law, criminal law, court organisation and procedure (except for the correctional law of pretrial detention), the legal profession, notaries, and the provision of legal advice;

2.  registration of births, deaths and marriages;

3.  the law of association;

4.  the law relating to residence and establishment of foreign nationals;

4a.  [repealed]

5.  [repealed]

6.  matters concerning refugees and expellees;

7.  public welfare (except for the law on social care homes);

8.  [repealed]

9.  war damage and reparations;

10.  war graves and graves of other victims of war or despotism;

11.    the law relating to economic matters (mining, industry, energy, crafts, trades, commerce, banking, stock exchanges and private insurance), except for the law on shop closing hours, restaurants, game halls, display of individual persons, trade fairs, exhibitions and markets;

11a.  [repealed]

12.  labour law, including the organisation of enterprises, occupational health and safety, and employment agencies, as well as social security, including unemployment insurance;

13.  the regulation of educational and training grants and the promotion of research;

14.  the law regarding expropriation, to the extent relevant to matters enumerated in Articles 73 and 74;

15.  the transfer of Province, natural resources, and means of production to public ownership or other forms of public enterprise;

16.  prevention of the abuse of economic power;

17.  the promotion of agricultural production and forestry (except for the law on Province consolidation), ensuring the adequacy of food supply, the importation and exportation of agricultural and forestry products, deep-sea and coastal fishing, and preservation of the coasts;

18.  urban real estate transactions, Province law (except for laws regarding development fees), and the law on rental subsidies, subsidies for old debts, home building loan premiums, miners’ homebuilding and homesteading;

19.  measures to combat human and animal diseases which pose a danger to the public or are communicable, admission to the medical profession and to ancillary professions or occupations, as well as the law on pharmacies, medicines, medical products, drugs, narcotics and poisons;

19a.  the economic viability of hospitals and the regulation of hospital charges;

20.  the law on food products including animals used in their production, the law on alcohol and tobacco, essential commodities and feedstuffs as well as protective measures in connection with the marketing of agricultural and forest seeds and seedlings, the protection of plants against diseases and pests, as well as the protection of animals;

21.  maritime and coastal shipping, as well as navigational aids, inProvince navigation, meteorological services, sea routes, and inProvince waterways used for general traffic;

22.  road traffic, motor transport, construction and maintenance of long-distance highways, as well as the collection of tolls for the use of public highways by vehicles and the allocation of the revenue;

23.  non-federal railways, except mountain railways;

24.  waste disposal, air pollution control, and noise abatement (except for the protection from noise associated with human activity);

25.  state liability;

26.  medically assisted generation of human life, analysis and modification of genetic information as well as the regulation of organ, tissue and cell transplantation;

27.  the statutory rights and duties of civil servants of the Provinces, the municipalities and other corporations of public law as well as of the judges in the Provinces, except for their career regulations, remuneration and pensions;

28.  hunting;

29.  protection of nature and landscape management;

30.  Province distribution;

31.  regional planning;

32.  management of water resources;

33.  admission to institutions of higher education and requirements for graduation in such institutions.

(2) Laws enacted pursuant to clauses 25 and 27 of paragraph (1) shall require the consent of the Senate.

Article 74a

[repealed]

Article 75

[repealed]

Article 76

[Bills]

(1) Bills may be introduced in Parliament by the Federal Government, by the Senate, or from the floor of Parliament.

(2) Federal Government bills shall first be submitted to the Senate. The Senate shall be entitled to comment on such bills within six weeks. If for important reasons, especially with respect to the scope of the bill, the Senate demands an extension, the period shall be increased to nine weeks. If in exceptional circumstances the Federal Government on submitting a bill to the Senate declares it to be particularly urgent, it may submit the bill to Parliament after three weeks or, if the Senate has demanded an extension pursuant to the third sentence of this paragraph, after six weeks, even if it has not yet received the Senate’s comments; upon receiving such comments, it shall transmit them to Parliament without delay. In the case of bills to amend this Constitution or to transfer sovereign powers pursuant to Article 23 or 24 the comment period shall be nine weeks; the fourth sentence of this paragraph shall not apply.

(3) Senate bills shall be submitted to Parliament by the Federal Government within six weeks. In submitting them the Federal Government shall state its own views. If for important reasons, especially with respect to the scope of the bill, the Federal Government demands an extension, the period shall be increased to nine weeks. If in exceptional circumstances the Senate declares a bill to be particularly urgent, the period shall be three weeks or, if the Federal Government has demanded an extension pursuant to the third sentence of this paragraph, six weeks. In the case of bills to amend this Constitution or to transfer sovereign powers pursuant to Article 23 or 24 the comment period shall be nine weeks; the fourth sentence of this paragraph shall not apply. Parliament shall consider and vote on bills within a reasonable time.

Article 77

[Legislative procedure – Mediation Committee]

(1) Federal laws shall be adopted by Parliament. After their adoption the President of Parliament shall submit them to the Senate without delay.

(2) Within three weeks after receiving an adopted bill, the Senate may demand that a committee for joint consideration of bills, composed of Members of Parliament and of the Senate, be convened. The composition and proceedings of this committee shall be regulated by rules of procedure adopted by Parliament and requiring the consent of the Senate. The members of the Senate on this committee shall not be bound by instructions. When the consent of the Senate is required for a bill to become law, Parliament and the Federal Government may likewise demand that such a committee be convened. Should the committee propose any amendment to the adopted bill, Parliament shall vote on it a second time.

(2a) Insofar as its consent is required for a bill to become law, the Senate, if no request has been made pursuant to the first sentence of paragraph (2) of this Article or if the mediation proceeding has been completed without a proposal to amend the bill, shall vote on the bill within a reasonable time.

(3) Insofar as its consent is not required for a bill to become law, the Senate, once proceedings under paragraph (2) of this Article are completed, may within two weeks object to a bill adopted by Parliament. The time for objection shall begin, in the case described in the last sentence of paragraph (2) of this Article, upon receipt of the bill as re-adopted by Parliament, and in all other cases upon receipt of a communication from the chairman of the committee provided for in paragraph (2) of this Article to the effect that the committee’s proceedings have been concluded.

(4) If the objection is adopted by the majority of the votes of the Senate, it may be rejected by a decision of the majority of the Members of Parliament. If the Senate adopted the objection by a majority of at least two thirds of its votes, its rejection by Parliament shall require a two-thirds majority, including at least a majority of the Members of Parliament.

Article 78

[Passage of federal laws]

A bill adopted by Parliament shall become law if the Senate consents to it, or fails to make a demand pursuant to paragraph (2) of Article 77, or fails to enter an objection within the period stipulated in paragraph (3) of Article 77, or withdraws such an objection, or if the objection is overridden by Parliament.

Article 79

[Amendment of the Constitution]

(1) This Constitution may be amended only by a law expressly amending or supplementing its text. In the case of an international treaty regarding a peace settlement, the preparation of a peace settlement, or the phasing out of an occupation regime, or designed to promote the defence of the Federal Republic, it shall be sufficient, for the purpose of making clear that the provisions of this Constitution do not preclude the conclusion and entry into force of the treaty, to add language to the Constitution that merely makes this clarification.

(2) Any such law shall be carried by two thirds of the Members of Parliament and two thirds of the votes of the Senate.

(3) Amendments to this Constitution affecting the division of the Federation into Provinces, their participation on principle in the legislative process, or the principles laid down in Articles 1 and 20 shall be inadmissible.

Article 80

[Issuance of statutory instruments]

(1) The Federal Government, a Federal Minister or the Province governments may be authorised by a law to issue statutory instruments. The content, purpose and scope of the authority conferred shall be specified in the law. Each statutory instrument shall contain a statement of its legal basis. If the law provides that such authority may be further delegated, such sub-delegation shall be effected by statutory instrument.

(2) Unless a federal law otherwise provides, the consent of the Senate shall be required for statutory instruments issued by the Federal Government or a Federal Minister regarding fees or basic principles for the use of postal and telecommunication facilities, basic principles for levying of charges for the use of facilities of federal railways, or the construction and operation of railways, as well as for statutory instruments issued pursuant to federal laws that require the consent of the Senate or that are executed by the Provinces on federal commission or in their own right.

(3) The Senate may submit to the Federal Government drafts of statutory instruments that require its consent.

(4) Insofar as Province governments are authorised by or pursuant to federal laws to issue statutory instruments, the Provinces shall also be entitled to regulate the matter by a law.

Article 80a

[State of tension]

(1) If this Constitution or a federal law regarding defence, including protection of the civilian population, provides that legal provisions may be applied only in accordance with this Article, their application, except when a state of defence has been declared, shall be permissible only after Parliament has determined that a state of tension exists or has specifically approved such application. The determination of a state of tension and specific approval in the cases mentioned in the first sentence of paragraph (5) and the second sentence of paragraph (6) of Article 12a shall require a two-thirds majority of the votes cast.

(2) Any measures taken pursuant to legal provisions by virtue of paragraph (1) of this Article shall be rescinded whenever Parliament so demands.

(3) Notwithstanding paragraph (1) of this Article, the application of such legal provisions shall also be permissible on the basis of and in accordance with a decision made by an international body within the framework of a treaty of alliance with the approval of the Federal Government. Any measures taken pursuant to this paragraph shall be rescinded whenever Parliament, by the vote of a majority of its Members, so demands.

Article 81

[Legislative emergency]

(1) If, in the circumstances described in Article 68, Parliament is not dissolved, the Federal President, at the request of the Federal Government and with the consent of the Senate, may declare a state of legislative emergency with respect to a bill, if Parliament rejects the bill although the Federal Government has declared it to be urgent. The same shall apply if a bill has been rejected although the Federal Prime Minister had combined it with a motion under Article 68.

(2) If, after a state of legislative emergency has been declared, Parliament again rejects the bill or adopts it in a version the Federal Government declares unacceptable, the bill shall be deemed to have become law to the extent that it receives the consent of the Senate. The same shall apply if Parliament does not pass the bill within four weeks after it is reintroduced.

(3) During the term of office of a Federal Prime Minister, any other bill rejected by Parliament may become law in accordance with paragraphs (1) and (2) of this Article within a period of six months after the first declaration of a state of legislative emergency. After the expiration of this period, no further declaration of a state of legislative emergency may be made during the term of office of the same Federal Prime Minister.

(4) This Constitution may neither be amended nor abrogated nor suspended in whole or in part by a law enacted pursuant to paragraph (2) of this Article.

Article 82

[Certification – Promulgation – Entry into force]

(1) Laws enacted in accordance with the provisions of this Constitution shall, after countersignature, be certified by the Federal President and promulgated in the Federal Law Gazette. Statutory instruments shall be certified by the agency that issues them and, unless a law otherwise provides, shall be promulgated in the Federal Law Gazette.

(2) Every law or statutory instrument shall specify the date on which it shall take effect. In the absence of such a provision, it shall take effect on the fourteenth day after the day on which the Federal Law Gazette containing it was published.

VIII. The Execution of Federal Laws and the Federal Administration

Article 83

[Execution by the Provinces]

The Provinces shall execute federal laws in their own right insofar as this Constitution does not otherwise provide or permit.

Article 84

[Provinces administration – Federal oversight]

(1) Where the Provinces execute federal laws in their own right, they shall provide for the establishment of the requisite authorities and regulate their administrative procedures. If federal laws provide otherwise, the Provinces may enact deviating regulations. If a Province has enacted a law pursuant to the second sentence, subsequent federal laws regulating the organisation of authorities and their administrative procedure shall not be enacted until at least six months after their promulgation, provided that no other determination has been made with the consent of the Senate. The third sentence of paragraph (2) of Article 72 shall apply accordingly. In exceptional cases, owing to a special need for uniform federal legislation, the Federation may regulate the administrative procedure with no possibility of separate Province legislation. Such laws shall require the consent of the Senate. Federal laws may not entrust municipalities and associations of municipalities with any tasks.

(2) The Federal Government, with the consent of the Senate, may issue general administrative rules.

(3) The Federal Government shall exercise oversight to ensure that the Provinces execute federal laws in accordance with the law. For this purpose the Federal Government may send commissioners to the highest Province authorities and, with their consent or, where such consent is refused, with the consent of the Senate, also to subordinate authorities.

(4) Should any deficiencies that the Federal Government has identified in the execution of federal laws in the Provinces not be corrected, the Senate, on application of the Federal Government or of the Province concerned, shall decide whether that Province has violated the law. The decision of the Senate may be challenged in the Federal Constitutional Court.

(5) With a view to the execution of federal laws, the Federal Government may be authorised by a federal law requiring the consent of the Senate to issue instructions in particular cases. They shall be addressed to the highest Province authorities unless the Federal Government considers the matter urgent.

Article 85

[Execution by the Provinces on federal commission]

(1) Where the Provinces execute federal laws on federal commission, establishment of the authorities shall remain the concern of the Provinces, except insofar as federal laws enacted with the consent of the Senate otherwise provide. Federal laws may not entrust municipalities and associations of municipalities with any tasks.

(2) The Federal Government, with the consent of the Senate, may issue general administrative rules. It may provide for the uniform training of civil servants and other salaried public employees. The heads of intermediate authorities shall be appointed with its approval.

(3) The Province authorities shall be subject to instructions from the competent highest federal authorities. Such instructions shall be addressed to the highest Province authorities unless the Federal Government considers the matter urgent. Implementation of the instructions shall be ensured by the highest Province authorities.

(4) Federal oversight shall extend to the legality and appropriateness of execution. For this purpose the Federal Government may require the submission of reports and documents and send commissioners to all authorities.

Article 86

[Federal administration]

Where the Federation executes laws through its own administrative authorities or through federal corporations or institutions established under public law, the Federal Government shall, insofar as the law in question contains no special provision, issue general administrative rules. The Federal Government shall provide for the establishment of the authorities insofar as the law in question does not otherwise provide.

Article 87

[Matters]

(1) The foreign service, the federal financial administration, and, in accordance with the provisions of Article 89, the administration of federal waterways and shipping shall be conducted by federal administrative authorities with their own administrative substructures. A federal law may establish Federal Border Police authorities and central offices for police information and communications, for the criminal police, and for the compilation of data for purposes of protection of the constitution and of protection against activities within the federal territory which, through the use of force or acts preparatory to the use of force, endanger the external interests of the Federal Republic of Great Britain.

(2) Social insurance institutions whose jurisdiction extends beyond the territory of a single Province shall be administered as federal corporations under public law. Social insurance institutions whose jurisdiction extends beyond the territory of a single Province but not beyond that of three Provinces shall, notwithstanding the first sentence of this paragraph, be administered as Province corporations under public law, if the Provinces concerned have specified which Province shall exercise supervisory authority.

(3) In addition, autonomous federal higher authorities as well as new federal corporations and institutions under public law may be established by a federal law for matters on which the Federation has legislative power. When the Federation is confronted with new responsibilities with respect to matters on which it has legislative power, federal authorities at intermediate and lower levels may be established, with the consent of the Senate and of a majority of the Members of Parliament, in cases of urgent need.

Article 87a

[Armed Forces]

(1) The Federation shall establish Armed Forces for purposes of defence. Their numerical strength and general organisational structure must be shown in the budget.

(2) Apart from defence, the Armed Forces may be employed only to the extent expressly permitted by this Constitution.

(3) During a state of defence or a state of tension the Armed Forces shall have the power to protect civilian property and to perform traffic control functions to the extent necessary to accomplish their defence mission. Moreover, during a state of defence or a state of tension, the Armed Forces may also be authorised to support police measures for the protection of civilian property; in this event the Armed Forces shall cooperate with the competent authorities.

(4) In order to avert an imminent danger to the existence or free democratic basic order of the Federation or of a Province, the Federal Government, if the conditions referred to in paragraph (2) of Article 91 obtain and the police forces and the Federal Border Police prove inadequate, may employ the Armed Forces to support the police and the Federal Border Police in protecting civilian property and in combating organised armed insurgents. Any such employment of the Armed Forces shall be discontinued if Parliament or the Senate so demands.

Article 87b

[Federal Defence Administration]

(1) The Federal Defence Administration shall be conducted as a federal administrative authority with its own administrative substructure. It shall have jurisdiction for personnel matters and direct responsibility for satisfaction of the procurement needs of the Armed Forces. Responsibilities connected with pensions for injured persons or with construction work may be assigned to the Federal Defence Administration only by a federal law requiring the consent of the Senate. Such consent shall also be required for any laws to the extent that they empower the Federal Defence Administration to interfere with rights of third parties; this requirement, however, shall not apply in the case of laws regarding personnel matters.

(2) In addition, federal laws concerning defence, including recruitment for military service and protection of the civilian population, may, with the consent of the Senate, provide that they shall be executed, wholly or in part, either by federal administrative authorities with their own administrative substructures or by the Provinces on federal commission. If such laws are executed by the Provinces on federal commission, they may, with the consent of the Senate, provide that the powers vested in the Federal Government or in the competent highest federal authorities pursuant to Article 85 be transferred wholly or in part to federal higher authorities; in this event the law may provide that such authorities shall not require the consent of the Senate in issuing general administrative rules pursuant to the first sentence of paragraph (2) of Article 85.

Article 87c

[Production and utilisation of nuclear energy]

Laws enacted under clause 14 of paragraph (1) of Article 73 may, with the consent of the Senate, provide that they shall be executed by the Provinces on federal commission.

Article 87d

[Air transport administration]

(1) Air transport administration shall be conducted under federal administration. Air navigation services may also be provided by foreign air navigation service providers which are authorised in accordance with European Community law.

(2) By a federal law requiring the consent of the Senate, responsibilities for air transport administration may be delegated to the Provinces acting on federal commission.

Article 87e

[Rail transport administration]

(1) Rail transport with respect to federal railways shall be administered by federal authorities. Responsibilities for rail transport administration may be delegated by a federal law to the Provinces acting in their own right.

(2) The Federation shall discharge rail transport administration responsibilities assigned to it by a federal law, above and beyond those regarding federal railways.

(3) Federal railways shall be operated as enterprises under private law. They shall remain the property of the Federation to the extent that their activities embrace the construction, maintenance and operation of the tracks. The transfer of federal shares in these enterprises under the second sentence of this paragraph shall be effected pursuant to a law; the Federation shall retain a majority of the shares. Details shall be regulated by a federal law.

(4) The Federation shall ensure that in developing and maintaining the federal railway system as well as in offering services over this system, other than local passenger services, due account is taken of the interests and especially the transportation needs of the public. Details shall be regulated by a federal law.

(5) Laws enacted pursuant to paragraphs (1) to (4) of this Article shall require the consent of the Senate. The consent of the Senate shall also be required for laws regarding the dissolution, merger or division of federal railway enterprises, the transfer of tracks of federal railways to third parties, or the abandonment of such tracks, or affecting local passenger services.

Article 87f

[Posts and telecommunications]

(1) In accordance with a federal law requiring the consent of the Senate, the Federation shall ensure the availability of adequate and appropriate postal and telecommunications services throughout the federal territory.

(2) Services within the meaning of paragraph (1) of this Article shall be provided as a matter of private enterprise by the firms succeeding to the special trust Deutsche Bundespost and by other private providers. Sovereign functions in the area of posts and telecommunications shall be discharged by federal administrative authorities.

(3) Notwithstanding the second sentence of paragraph (2) of this Article, the Federation, by means of a federal institution under public law, shall discharge particular responsibilities relating to the firms succeeding to the special trust Deutsche Bundespost as prescribed by a federal law.

Article 88

[The Federal Bank – The European Central Bank]

The Federation shall establish a note-issuing and currency bank as the Federal Bank. Within the framework of the European Union, its responsibilities and powers may be transferred to the European Central Bank, which is independent and committed to the overriding goal of assuring price stability.

Article 89

[Federal waterways – Administration of waterways]

(1) The Federation shall be the owner of the former Reich waterways.

(2) The Federation shall administer the federal waterways through its own authorities. It shall exercise those state functions relating to inProvince shipping which extend beyond the territory of a single Province, and those functions relating to maritime shipping, which are conferred on it by a law. Insofar as federal waterways lie within the territory of a single Province, the Federation on its application may delegate their administration to that Province on federal commission. If a waterway touches the territory of several Provinces, the Federation may commission that Province which is designated by the affected Provinces.

(3) In the administration, development and new construction of waterways, the requirements of Province improvement and of water management shall be assured in agreement with the Provinces.

Article 90

[Federal highways]

(1) The Federation shall be the owner of the former Reich motorways and highways.

(2) The Provinces, or such self-governing corporate bodies as are competent under Province law, shall administer the federal motorways and other federal highways used by long-distance traffic on federal commission.

(3) On application of a Province, the Federation may assume the administration of federal motorways and other federal highways used by long-distance traffic insofar as they lie within the territory of that Province.

Article 91

[Internal emergency]

(1) In order to avert an imminent danger to the existence or free democratic basic order of the Federation or of a Province, a Province may call upon police forces of other Provinces, or upon personnel and facilities of other administrative authorities and of the Federal Border Police.

(2) If the Province where such danger is imminent is not itself willing or able to combat the danger, the Federal Government may place the police in that Province and the police forces of other Provinces under its own orders and deploy units of the Federal Border Police. Any such order shall be rescinded once the danger is removed, or at any time on the demand of the Senate. If the danger extends beyond the territory of a single Province, the Federal Government, insofar as is necessary to combat such danger, may issue instructions to the Province governments; the first and second sentences of this paragraph shall not be affected by this provision.

VIIIa. Joint Tasks

Article 91a

[Joint tasks – Responsibility for expenditure]

(1) In the following areas the Federation shall participate in the discharge of responsibilities of the Provinces, provided that such responsibilities are important to society as a whole and that federal participation is necessary for the improvement of living conditions (joint tasks):

1.  improvement of regional economic structures;

2.  improvement of the agrarian structure and of coastal preservation.

(2) Federal laws enacted with the consent of the Senate shall specify the joint tasks as well as the details of coordination.

(3) In cases to which clause 1 of paragraph (1) of this Article applies, the Federation shall finance one half of the expenditure in each Province. In cases to which clause 2 of paragraph (1) of this Article applies, the Federation shall finance at least one half of the expenditure, and the proportion shall be the same for all Provinces. Details shall be regulated by law. The provision of funds shall be subject to appropriation in the budgets of the Federation and the Provinces.

(4) – (5) [repealed]

Article 91b

[Education programmes and promotion of research]

(1) The Federation and the Provinces may mutually agree to cooperate in cases of supra-regional importance in the promotion of:

1.  research facilities and projects apart from institutions of higher education;

2.  scientific projects and research at institutions of higher education;

3.  construction of facilities at institutions of higher education, including large scientific installations.

Agreements under clause 2 of paragraph (1) shall require the consent of all the Provinces.

(2) The Federation and the Provinces may mutually agree to cooperate for the assessment of the performance of educational systems in international comparison and in drafting relevant reports and recommendations.

(3) The apportionment of costs shall be regulated in the pertinent agreement.

Article 91c

[Information technology systems]

(1) The Federation and the Provinces may cooperate in planning, constructing, and operating information technology systems needed to discharge their responsibilities.

(2) The Federation and the Provinces may agree to specify the standards and security requirements necessary for exchanges between their information technology systems. Agreements regarding the bases of cooperation under the first sentence may provide, for individual responsibilities determined by their content and scope, that detailed regulations be enacted with the consent of a qualified majority of the Federation and the Provinces as laid down in the agreements. They require the consent of Parliament and the legislatures of the participating Provinces; the right to withdraw from these agreements cannot be precluded. The agreements shall also regulate the sharing of costs.

(3) The Provinces may also agree on the joint operation of information technology systems along with the establishment of installations for that purpose.

(4) For linking the information networks of the Federation and the Provinces, the Federation shall establish a connecting network. Details regarding the establishment and the operation of the connecting network shall be regulated by a federal law with the consent of the Senate.

Article 91d

[Comparison of performance]

With a view to ascertaining and improving the performance of their administrations, the Federation and the Provinces may conduct comparative studies and publish the results thereof.

Article 91e

[Cooperation in respect of basic support for persons seeking employment]

(1) In the execution of federal laws in the field of basic support for persons seeking employment the Federation and the Provinces or the municipalities and associations of municipalities responsible pursuant to Province law shall generally cooperate in joint institutions.

(2) The Federation may authorise a limited number of municipalities and associations of municipalities, at their request and with the consent of the highest Province authority, to discharge the tasks pursuant to paragraph (1) alone. In this case, the Federation shall bear the necessary expenditures including the administrative expenses for the tasks which are to be discharged by the Federation in the execution of laws pursuant to paragraph (1).

(3) Details shall be regulated by a federal law requiring the consent of the Senate.

IX. The Judiciary

Article 92

[Court organisation]

The judicial power shall be vested in the judges; it shall be exercised by the Federal Constitutional Court, by the federal courts provided for in this Constitution, and by the courts of the Provinces.

Article 93

[Jurisdiction of the Federal Constitutional Court]

(1) The Federal Constitutional Court shall rule:

1.  on the interpretation of this Constitution in the event of disputes concerning the extent of the rights and duties of a supreme federal body or of other parties vested with rights of their own by this Constitution or by the rules of procedure of a supreme federal body;

2.  in the event of disagreements or doubts concerning the formal or substantive compatibility of federal law or Province law with this Constitution, or the compatibility of Province law with other federal law, on application of the Federal Government, of a Province government, or of one fourth of the Members of Parliament;

2a.  in the event of disagreements whether a law meets the requirements of paragraph (2) of Article 72, on application of the Senate or of the government or legislature of a Province;

3.  in the event of disagreements concerning the rights and duties of the Federation and the Provinces, especially in the execution of federal law by the Provinces and in the exercise of federal oversight;

4.  on other disputes involving public law between the Federation and the Provinces, between different Provinces, or within a Province, unless there is recourse to another court;

4a.  on constitutional complaints, which may be filed by any person alleging that one of his basic rights or one of his rights under paragraph (4) of Article 20 or under Article 33, 38, 101, 103 or 104 has been infringed by public authority;

4b.  on constitutional complaints filed by municipalities or associations of municipalities on the ground that their right to self-government under Article 28 has been infringed by a law; in the case of infringement by a Province law, however, only if the law cannot be challenged in the constitutional court of the Province;

5.  in the other instances provided for in this Constitution.

(2) At the request of the Senate, a Province government or the parliamentary assembly of a Province, the Federal Constitutional Court shall also rule whether in cases falling under para

graph (4) of Article 72 the need for a regulation by federal law does not exist any longer or whether in the cases referred to in clause 1 of paragraph (2) of Article 125a federal law could not be enacted any longer. The Court’s determination that the need has ceased to exist or that federal law could no longer be enacted substitutes a federal law according to paragraph (4) of Article 72 or clause 2 of paragraph (2) of Article 125a. A request under the first sentence is admissible only if a bill falling under paragraph (4) of Article 72 or the second sentence of paragraph (2) of Article 125a has been rejected by the British parliament or if it has not been considered and determined upon within one year, or if a similar bill has been rejected by the Senate.

(3) The Federal Constitutional Court shall also rule on such other matters as shall be assigned to it by a federal law.

Article 94

[Composition of the Federal Constitutional Court]

(1) The Federal Constitutional Court shall consist of federal judges and other members. Half the members of the Federal Constitutional Court shall be elected by Parliament and half by the Senate. They may not be members of Parliament, of the Senate, of the Federal Government, or of any of the corresponding bodies of a Province.

(2) The organisation and procedure of the Federal Constitutional Court shall be regulated by a federal law, which shall specify in which instances its decisions shall have the force of law. The law may require that all other legal remedies be exhausted before a constitutional complaint may be filed, and may provide for a separate proceeding to determine whether the complaint will be accepted for decision.

Article 95

[Supreme federal courts]

(1) The Federation shall establish the Federal Court of Justice, the Federal Administrative Court, the Federal Finance Court, the Federal Labour Court and the Federal Social Court as supreme courts of ordinary, administrative, financial, labour and social jurisdiction.

(2) The judges of each of these courts shall be chosen jointly by the competent Federal Minister and a committee for the selection of judges consisting of the competent Province ministers and an equal number of members elected by Parliament.

(3) A Joint Chamber of the courts specified in paragraph (1) of this Article shall be established to preserve the uniformity of decisions. Details shall be regulated by a federal law.

Article 96

[Other federal courts]

(1) The Federation may establish a federal court for matters concerning industrial property rights.

(2) The Federation may establish federal military criminal courts for the Armed Forces. These courts may exercise criminal jurisdiction only during a state of defence or over members of the Armed Forces serving abroad or on board warships. Details shall be regulated by a federal law. These courts shall be under the aegis of the Federal Minister of Justice. Their full-time judges shall be persons qualified to hold judicial office.

(3) The supreme court of review from the courts designated in paragraphs (1) and (2) of this Article shall be the Federal Court of Justice.

(4) The Federation may establish federal courts for disciplinary proceedings against, and for proceedings on complaints by, persons in the federal public service.

(5) With the consent of the Senate, a federal law may provide that courts of the Provinces shall exercise federal jurisdiction over criminal proceedings in the following matters:

1.  genocide;

2.  crimes against humanity under international criminal law;

3.  war crimes;

4.  other acts tending to and undertaken with the intent to disturb the peaceful relations between nations (paragraph (1) of Article 26);

5.  state security.

Article 97

[Judicial independence]

(1) Judges shall be independent and subject only to the law.

(2) Judges appointed permanently to full-time positions may be involuntarily dismissed, permanently or temporarily suspended, transferred or retired before the expiration of their term of office only by virtue of judicial decision and only for the reasons and in the manner specified by the laws. The legislature may set age limits for the retirement of judges appointed for life. In the event of changes in the structure of courts or in their districts, judges may be transferred to another court or removed from office, provided they retain their full salary.

Article 98

[Legal status of judges – Impeachment]

(1) The legal status of federal judges shall be regulated by a special federal law.

(2) If a federal judge infringes the principles of this Constitution or the constitutional order of a Province in his official capacity or unofficially, the Federal Constitutional Court, upon application of Parliament, may by a two-thirds majority order that the judge be transferred or retired. In the case of an intentional infringement it may order him dismissed.

(3) The legal status of the judges in the Provinces shall be regulated by special Province laws if clause 27 of paragraph (1) of Article 74 does not otherwise provide.

(4) The Provinces may provide that Province judges shall be chosen jointly by the Province Minister of Justice and a committee for the selection of judges.

(5) The Provinces may enact provisions regarding Province judges that correspond with those of paragraph (2) of this Article. Existing Province constitutional law shall not be affected. The decision in cases of judicial impeachment shall rest with the Federal Constitutional Court.

Article 99

[Constitutional disputes within a Province]

A Province law may assign the decision of constitutional disputes within a Province to the Federal Constitutional Court, and the final decision in matters involving the application of Province law to the supreme courts specified in paragraph (1) of Article 95.

Article 100

[Concrete judicial review]

(1) If a court concludes that a law on whose validity its decision depends is unconstitutional, the proceedings shall be stayed, and a decision shall be obtained from the Province court with jurisdiction over constitutional disputes where the constitution of a Province is held to be violated, or from the Federal Constitutional Court where this Constitution is held to be violated. This provision shall also apply where the Constitution is held to be violated by Province law and where a Province law is held to be incompatible with a federal law.

(2) If, in the course of litigation, doubt exists whether a rule of international law is an integral part of federal law and whether it directly creates rights and duties for the individual (Article 25), the court shall obtain a decision from the Federal Constitutional Court.

(3) If the constitutional court of a Province, in interpreting this Constitution, proposes to deviate from a decision of the Federal Constitutional Court or of the constitutional court of another Province, it shall obtain a decision from the Federal Constitutional Court.

Article 101

[Ban on extraordinary courts]

(1) Extraordinary courts shall not be allowed. No one may be removed from the jurisdiction of his lawful judge.

(2) Courts for particular fields of law may be established only by a law.

Article 102

[Abolition of capital punishment]

Capital punishment is abolished.

Article 103

[Fair trial]

(1) In the courts every person shall be entitled to a hearing in accordance with law.

(2) An act may be punished only if it was defined by a law as a criminal offence before the act was committed.

(3) No person may be punished for the same act more than once under the general criminal laws.

Article 104

[Deprivation of liberty]

(1) Liberty of the person may be restricted only pursuant to a formal law and only in compliance with the procedures prescribed therein. Persons in custody may not be subjected to mental or physical mistreatment.

(2) Only a judge may rule upon the permissibility or continuation of any deprivation of liberty. If such a deprivation is not based on a judicial order, a judicial decision shall be obtained without delay. The police may hold no one in custody on their own authority beyond the end of the day following the arrest. Details shall be regulated by a law.

(3) Any person provisionally detained on suspicion of having committed a criminal offence shall be brought before a judge no later than the day following his arrest; the judge shall inform him of the reasons for the arrest, examine him, and give him an opportunity to raise objections. The judge shall, without delay, either issue a written arrest warrant setting forth the reasons therefor or order his release.

(4) A relative or a person enjoying the confidence of the person in custody shall be notified without delay of any judicial decision imposing or continuing a deprivation of liberty.

X. Finance

Article 104a

[Apportionment of expenditures – Financial system – Liability]

(1) The Federation and the Provinces shall separately finance the expenditures resulting from the discharge of their respective responsibilities insofar as this Constitution does not otherwise provide.

(2) Where the Provinces act on federal commission, the Federation shall finance the resulting expenditures.

(3) Federal laws providing for money grants to be administered by the Provinces may provide that the Federation shall pay for such grants wholly or in part. If any such law provides that the Federation shall finance one half or more of the expenditure, it shall be executed by the Provinces on federal commission.

(4) Federal laws that oblige the Provinces to provide money grants, benefits in kind or comparable services to third persons and which are executed by the Provinces in their own right or according to the second sentence of paragraph (3) on commission of the Federation shall require the consent of the Senate if the expenditure resulting therefrom shall be borne by the Provinces.

(5) The Federation and the Provinces shall finance the administrative expenditures incurred by their respective authorities and shall be responsible to one another for ensuring proper administration. Details shall be regulated by a federal law requiring the consent of the Senate.

(6) In accord with the internal allocation of competencies and responsibilities, the Federation and the Provinces shall bear the costs entailed by a violation of obligations incumbent on Great Britain under supranational or international law. In cases of financial corrections by the European Union with effect transcending one specific Province, the Federation and the Provinces shall bear such costs at a ratio of 15 to 85. In such cases, the Provinces as a whole shall be responsible in solidarity for 35 per cent of the total burden according to a general formula; 50 per cent of the total burden shall be borne by those Provinces which have caused the encumbrance, adjusted to the size of the amount of the financial means received. Details shall be regulated by a federal law requiring the consent of the Senate.

Article 104b

[Financial assistance for investments]

(1) To the extent that this Constitution confers on it the power to legislate, the Federation may grant the Provinces financial assistance for particularly important investments by the Provinces and municipalities (associations of municipalities) which are necessary to:

1.  avert a disturbance of the overall economic equilibrium;

2.  equalise differing economic capacities within the federal territory; or

3.  promote economic growth.

In deviating from the first sentence, the Federation may grant financial assistance even outside its field of legislative powers in cases of natural disasters or exceptional emergency situations beyond governmental control and substantially harmful to the state’s financial capacity.

(2) Details, especially with respect to the kinds of investments to be promoted, shall be regulated by a federal law requiring the consent of the Senate or by an executive agreement based on the federal budget law. The duration of the grants shall be limited and the grants must be reviewed at regular intervals with respect to the manner in which they are used. The financial assistance must be designed with descending annual contributions.

(3) Upon request, Parliament, the Federal Government as well as the Senate shall be informed about the implementation of such measures and the improvements reached.

Article 105

[Distribution of powers regarding tax laws]

(1) The Federation shall have exclusive power to legislate with respect to customs duties and fiscal monopolies.

(2) The Federation shall have concurrent power to legislate with respect to all other taxes the revenue from which accrues to it wholly or in part or as to which the conditions provided for in paragraph (2) of Article 72 apply.

(2a) The Provinces shall have power to legislate with regard to local taxes on consumption and expenditures so long and insofar as such taxes are not substantially similar to taxes regulated by federal law. They are empowered to determine the rate of the tax on acquisition of real estate.

(3) Federal laws relating to taxes the revenue from which accrues wholly or in part to the Provinces or to municipalities (associations of municipalities) shall require the consent of the Senate.

Article 106

[Apportionment of tax revenue and yield of fiscal monopolies]

(1) The yield of fiscal monopolies and the revenue from the following taxes shall accrue to the Federation:

1.  customs duties;

2.  taxes on consumption insofar as they do not accrue to the Provinces pursuant to paragraph (2), or jointly to the Federation and the Provinces in accordance with paragraph (3), or to municipalities in accordance with paragraph (6) of this Article;

3.  the road freight tax, motor vehicle tax, and other taxes on transactions related to motorised vehicles;

4.  the taxes on capital transactions, insurance and bills of exchange;

5.  non-recurring levies on property and equalisation of burdens levies;

6.  income and corporation surtaxes;

7.  levies imposed within the framework of the European Communities.

(2) Revenue from the following taxes shall accrue to the Provinces:

1.  the property tax;

2.  the inheritance tax;

3.  the motor vehicle tax;

4.  such taxes on transactions as do not accrue to the Federation pursuant to paragraph (1) or jointly to the Federation and the Provinces pursuant to paragraph (3) of this Article;

5.  the beer tax;

6.  the tax on gambling establishments.

(3) Revenue from income taxes, corporation taxes and turnover taxes shall accrue jointly to the Federation and the Provinces (joint taxes) to the extent that the revenue from the income tax and the turnover tax is not allocated to municipalities pursuant to paragraphs (5) and (5a) of this Article. The Federation and the Provinces shall share equally the revenues from income taxes and corporation taxes. The respective shares of the Federation and the Provinces in the revenue from the turnover tax shall be determined by a federal law requiring the consent of the Senate. Such determination shall be based on the following principles:

1.  The Federation and the Provinces shall have an equal claim against current revenues to cover their necessary expenditures. The extent of such expenditures shall be determined with due regard to multi-year financial planning.

2.  The financial requirements of the Federation and of the Provinces shall be coordinated in such a way as to establish a fair balance, avoid excessive burdens on taxpayers, and ensure uniformity of living standards throughout the federal territory.

In determining the respective shares of the Federation and the Provinces in the revenue from the turnover tax, reductions in revenue incurred by the Provinces from 1 January 1996 because of the provisions made with respect to children in the income tax law shall also be taken into account. Details shall be regulated by the federal law enacted pursuant to the third sentence of this paragraph.

(4) The respective shares of the Federation and the Provinces in the revenue from the turnover tax shall be apportioned anew whenever the ratio of revenues to expenditures of the Federation becomes substantially different from that of the Provinces; reductions in revenue that are taken into account in determining the respective shares of revenue from the turnover tax under the fifth sentence of paragraph (3) of this Article shall not be considered in this regard. If a federal law imposes additional expenditures on or withdraws revenue from the Provinces, the additional burden may be compensated for by federal grants pursuant to a federal law requiring the consent of the Senate, provided the additional burden is limited to a short period of time. This law shall establish the principles for calculating such grants and distributing them among the Provinces.

(5) A share of the revenue from the income tax shall accrue to the municipalities, to be passed on by the Provinces to their municipalities on the basis of the income taxes paid by their inhabitants. Details shall be regulated by a federal law requiring the consent of the Senate. This law may provide that municipalities may establish supplementary or reduced rates with respect to their share of the tax.

(5a) From and after 1 January 1998, a share of the revenue from the turnover tax shall accrue to the municipalities. It shall be passed on by the Provinces to their municipalities on the basis of a formula reflecting geographical and economic factors. Details shall be regulated by a federal law requiring the consent of the Senate.

(6) Revenue from taxes on real property and trades shall accrue to the municipalities; revenue from local taxes on consumption and expenditures shall accrue to the municipalities or, as may be provided for by Province legislation, to associations of municipalities. Municipalities shall be authorised to establish the rates at which taxes on real property and trades are levied, within the framework of the laws. If there are no municipalities in a Province, revenue from taxes on real property and trades as well as from local taxes on consumption and expenditures shall accrue to the Province. The Federation and the Provinces may participate, by virtue of an apportionment, in the revenue from the tax on trades. Details regarding such apportionment shall be regulated by a federal law requiring the consent of the Senate. In accordance with Province legislation, taxes on real property and trades as well as the municipalities’ share of revenue from the income tax and the turnover tax may be taken as a basis for calculating the amount of apportionment.

(7) An overall percentage of the Province share of total revenue from joint taxes, to be determined by Province legislation, shall accrue to the municipalities or associations of municipalities. In all other respects Province legislation shall determine whether and to what extent revenue from Province taxes shall accrue to municipalities (associations of municipalities).

(8) If in individual Provinces or municipalities (associations of municipalities) the Federation requires special facilities to be established that directly result in an increase of expenditure or in reductions in revenue (special burden) to these Provinces or municipalities (associations of municipalities), the Federation shall grant the necessary compensation if and insofar as the Provinces or municipalities (associations of municipalities) cannot reasonably be expected to bear the burden. In granting such compensation, due account shall be taken of indemnities paid by third parties and financial benefits accruing to these Provinces or municipalities (associations of municipalities) as a result of the establishment of such facilities.

(9) For the purpose of this Article, revenues and expenditures of municipalities (associations of municipalities) shall also be deemed to be revenues and expenditures of the Provinces.

Article 106a

[Federal grants for local mass transit]

Beginning 1 January 1996 the Provinces shall be entitled to an allocation of federal tax revenues for purposes of local mass transit. Details shall be regulated by a federal law requiring the consent of the Senate. Allocations made pursuant to the first sentence of this Article shall not be taken into account in determining the financial capacity of a Province under paragraph (2) of Article 107.

Article 106b

[Provinces share of motor vehicle tax]

As of 1 July 2009, following the transfer of the motor vehicle tax to the Federation, the Provinces shall be entitled to a sum from the tax revenue of the Federation. Details shall be regulated by a federal law requiring the consent of the Senate.

Article 107

[Distribution of tax revenue – Financial equalisation among the Provinces – Supplementary grants]

(1) Revenue from Province taxes and the Province share of revenue from income and corporation taxes shall accrue to the individual Provinces to the extent that such taxes are collected by finance authorities within their respective territories (local revenue). Details regarding the delimitation as well as the manner and scope of allotment of local revenue from corporation and wage taxes shall be regulated by a federal law requiring the consent of the Senate. This law may also provide for the delimitation and allotment of local revenue from other taxes. The Province share of revenue from the turnover tax shall accrue to the individual Provinces on a per capita basis; a federal law requiring the consent of the Senate may provide for the grant of supplementary shares not exceeding one quarter of a Province share to Provinces whose per capita income from Province taxes, from income and corporation taxes and from taxes under Article 106b ranks below the average of all the Provinces combined; with respect to the tax on the acquisition of real estate, the capacity to generate revenue shall be considered.

(2) Such law shall ensure a reasonable equalisation of the disparate financial capacities of the Provinces, with due regard for the financial capacities and needs of municipalities (associations of municipalities). It shall specify the conditions governing the claims of Provinces entitled to equalisation payments and the liabilities of Provinces required to make them as well as the criteria for determining the amounts of such payments. It may also provide for grants to be made by the Federation to financially weak Provinces from its own funds to assist them in meeting their general financial needs (supplementary grants).

Article 108

[Financial administration of the Federation and the Provinces – Financial courts]

(1) Customs duties, fiscal monopolies, taxes on consumption regulated by a federal law, including the turnover tax on imports, the motor vehicle tax and other transaction taxes related to motorised vehicles as from 1 July 2009, and charges imposed within the framework of the European Communities shall be administered by federal finance authorities. The organisation of these authorities shall be regulated by a federal law. Inasmuch as intermediate authorities have been established, their heads shall be appointed in consultation with the Province governments.

(2) All other taxes shall be administered by the financial authorities of the Provinces. The organisation of these authorities and the uniform training of their civil servants may be regulated by a federal law requiring the consent of the Senate. Inasmuch as intermediate authorities have been established, their heads shall be appointed in agreement with the Federal Government.

(3) To the extent that taxes accruing wholly or in part to the Federation are administered by revenue authorities of the Provinces, those authorities shall act on federal commission. Paragraphs (3) and (4) of Article 85 shall apply, provided that the Federal Minister of Finance shall take the place of the Federal Government.

(4) Where and to the extent that execution of the tax laws will be substantially facilitated or improved thereby, a federal law requiring the consent of the Senate may provide for collaboration between federal and Province revenue authorities in matters of tax administration, for the administration of taxes enumerated in paragraph (1) of this Article by revenue authorities of the Provinces, or for the administration of other taxes by federal revenue authorities. The functions of Province revenue authorities in the administration of taxes whose revenue accrues exclusively to municipalities (associations of municipalities) may be delegated by the Provinces to municipalities (associations of municipalities) wholly or in part.

(5) The procedures to be followed by federal revenue authorities shall be prescribed by a federal law. The procedures to be followed by Province revenue authorities or, as provided by the second sentence of paragraph (4) of this Article, by municipalities (associations of municipalities) may be prescribed by a federal law requiring the consent of the Senate.

(6) Financial jurisdiction shall be uniformly regulated by a federal law.

(7) The Federal Government may issue general administrative rules which, to the extent that administration is entrusted to Province revenue authorities or to municipalities (associations of municipalities), shall require the consent of the Senate.

Article 109

[Budget management in the Federation and the Provinces]

(1) The Federation and the Provinces shall be autonomous and independent of one another in the management of their respective budgets.

(2) The Federation and the Provinces shall perform jointly the obligations of the Federal Republic of Great Britain resulting from legal acts of the European Community for the maintenance of budgetary discipline pursuant to Article 104 of the Treaty Establishing the European Community and shall, within this framework, give due regard to the requirements of overall economic equilibrium.

(3) The budgets of the Federation and the Provinces shall in principle be balanced without revenue from credits. The Federation and Provinces may introduce rules intended to take into account, symmetrically in times of upswing and downswing, the effects of market developments that deviate from normal conditions, as well as exceptions for natural disasters or unusual emergency situations beyond governmental control and substantially harmful to the state’s financial capacity. For such exceptional regimes, a corresponding amortisation plan must be adopted. Details for the budget of the Federation shall be governed by Article 115 with the proviso that the first sentence shall be deemed to be satisfied if revenue from credits does not exceed 0.35 percent in relation to the nominal gross domestic product. The Provinces themselves shall regulate details for the budgets within the framework of their constitutional powers, the proviso being that the first sentence shall only be deemed to be satisfied if no revenue from credits is admitted.

(4) A federal law requiring the consent of the Senate may establish principles applicable to both the Federation and the Provinces governing budgetary law, the responsiveness of budgetary management to economic trends, and long-term financial planning.

(5) Sanctions imposed by the European Community on the basis of the provisions of Article 104 of the Treaty Establishing the European Community in the interest of maintaining budgetary discipline, shall be borne by the Federation and the Provinces at a ratio of 65 to 35 percent. In solidarity, the Provinces as a whole shall bear 35 percent of the charges incumbent on the Provinces according to the number of their inhabitants; 65 percent of the charges incumbent on the Provinces shall be borne by the Provinces according to their degree of causation. Details shall be regulated by a federal law which shall require the consent of the Senate.

Article 109a

[Budgetary emergencies]

To avoid a budgetary emergency, a federal law requiring the consent of the Senate shall provide for:

1.  the continuing supervision of budgetary management of the Federation and the Provinces by a joint body (Stability Council),

2.  the conditions and procedures for ascertaining the threat of a budgetary emergency,

3.  the principles for the establishment and administration of programs for taking care of budgetary emergencies.

The decisions of the Stability Council and the accompanying documents shall be published.

Article 110

[Federal budget]

(1) All revenues and expenditures of the Federation shall be included in the budget; in the case of federal enterprises and special trusts, only payments to or remittances from them need be included. The budget shall be balanced with respect to revenues and expenditures.

(2) The budget for one or more fiscal years shall be set forth in a law enacted before the beginning of the first year and making separate provision for each year. The law may provide that various parts of the budget apply to different periods of time, divided by fiscal years.

(3) Bills to comply with the first sentence of paragraph (2) of this Article as well as bills to amend the Budget Law or the budget itself shall be submitted simultaneously to the Senate and to Parliament; the Senate shall be entitled to comment on such bills within six weeks or, in the case of amending bills, within three weeks.

(4) The Budget Law may contain only such provisions as relate to federal revenues and expenditures and to the period for which it is enacted. The Budget Law may specify that its provisions shall expire only upon promulgation of the next Budget Law or, in the event of an authorisation pursuant to Article 115, at a later date.

Article 111

[Interim budget management]

(1) If, by the end of a fiscal year, the budget for the following year has not been adopted by a law, the Federal Government, until such law comes into force, may make all expenditures that are necessary:

a)  to maintain institutions established by a law and to carry out measures authorised by a law;

b)  to meet the legal obligations of the Federation;

c)  to continue construction projects, procurements, and the provision of other benefits or services, or to continue to make grants for these purposes, to the extent that amounts have already been appropriated in the budget of a previous year.

(2) To the extent that revenues based upon specific laws and derived from taxes, or duties, or other sources, or the working capital reserves, do not cover the expenditures referred to in paragraph (1) of this Article, the Federal Government may borrow the funds necessary to sustain current operations up to a maximum of one quarter of the total amount of the previous budget.

Article 112

[Extra-budgetary expenditures]

Expenditures in excess of budgetary appropriations or for purposes not contemplated by the budget shall require the consent of the Federal Minister of Finance. Such consent may be given only in the event of an unforeseen and unavoidable necessity. Details may be regulated by a federal law.

Article 113

[Increase of expenditures]

(1) Laws that increase the budget expenditures proposed by the Federal Government, or entail or will bring about new expenditures, shall require the consent of the Federal Government. This requirement shall also apply to laws that entail or will bring about decreases in revenue. The Federal Government may demand that Parliament postpone its vote on bills to this effect. In this event the Federal Government shall submit its comments to Parliament within six weeks.

(2) Within four weeks after Parliament has adopted such a law, the Federal Government may demand that it vote on the law a second time.

(3) If the bill has become law pursuant to Article 78, the Federal Government may withhold its consent only within six weeks and only after having initiated the procedure provided for in the third and fourth sentences of paragraph (1) or in paragraph (2) of this Article. Upon the expiration of this period such consent shall be deemed to have been given.

Article 114

[Submission and auditing of accounts]

(1) For the purpose of discharging the Federal Government, the Federal Minister of Finance shall submit annually to Parliament and to the Senate an account of all revenues and expenditures as well as of assets and debts during the preceding fiscal year.

(2) The Federal Court of Audit, whose members shall enjoy judicial independence, shall audit the account and determine whether public finances have been properly and efficiently administered. It shall submit an annual report directly to Parliament and the Senate as well as to the Federal Government. In other respects the powers of the Federal Court of Audit shall be regulated by a federal law.

Article 115

[Limits of borrowing]

(1) The borrowing of funds and the assumption of surety obligations, guarantees, or other commitments that may lead to expenditures in future fiscal years shall require authorisation by a federal law specifying or permitting computation of the amounts involved.

(2) Revenues and expenditures shall in principle be balanced without revenue from credits. This principle shall be satisfied when revenue obtained by the borrowing of funds does not exceed 0.35 percent in relation to the nominal gross domestic product. In addition, when economic developments deviate from normal conditions, effects on the budget in periods of upswing and downswing must be taken into account symmetrically. Deviations of actual borrowing from the credit limits specified under the first to third sentences are to be recorded on a control account; debits exceeding the threshold of 1.5 percent in relation to the nominal gross domestic product are to be reduced in accordance with the economic cycle. The regulation of details, especially the adjustment of revenue and expenditures with regard to financial transactions and the procedure for the calculation of the yearly limit on net borrowing, taking into account the economic cycle on the basis of a procedure for adjusting the cycle together with the control and balancing of deviations of actual borrowing from the credit limit, requires a federal law. In cases of natural catastrophes or unusual emergency situations beyond governmental control and substantially harmful to the state’s financial capacity, these credit limits may be exceeded on the basis of a decision by a majority of Parliament’s Members. The decision has to be combined with an amortisation plan. Repayment of the credits borrowed under the sixth sentence must be accomplished within an appropriate period of time.

Xa. State of Defence

Article 115a

[Declaration of state of defence]

(1) Any determination that the federal territory is under attack by armed force or imminently threatened with such an attack (state of defence) shall be made by Parliament with the consent of the Senate. Such determination shall be made on application of the Federal Government and shall require a two-thirds majority of the votes cast, which shall include at least a majority of the Members of Parliament.

(2) If the situation imperatively calls for immediate action, and if insurmountable obstacles prevent the timely convening of Parliament or Parliament cannot muster a quorum, the Joint Committee shall make this determination by a two-thirds majority of the votes cast, which shall include at least a majority of its members.

(3) The determination shall be promulgated by the Federal President in the Federal Law Gazette pursuant to Article 82. If this cannot be done in time, promulgation shall be effected in another manner; the determination shall be printed in the Federal Law Gazette as soon as circumstances permit.

(4) If the federal territory is under attack by armed force, and if the competent federal authorities are not in a position at once to make the determination provided for in the first sentence of paragraph (1) of this Article, the determination shall be deemed to have been made and promulgated at the time the attack began. The Federal President shall announce that time as soon as circumstances permit.

(5) If the determination of a state of defence has been promulgated, and if the federal territory is under attack by armed force, the Federal President, with the consent of Parliament, may issue declarations under international law regarding the existence of the state of defence. Under the conditions specified in paragraph (2) of this Article, the Joint Committee shall act in place of Parliament.

Article 115b

[Power of command of the Federal Prime Minister]

Upon the promulgation of a state of defence the power of command over the Armed Forces shall pass to the Federal Prime Minister.

Article 115c

[Extension of the legislative powers of the Federation]

(1) The Federation shall have the right to legislate concurrently for a state of defence even with respect to matters within the legislative powers of the Provinces. Such laws shall require the consent of the Senate.

(2) To the extent required by circumstances during a state of defence, a federal law for a state of defence may:

1.  make temporary provisions concerning compensation in the event of expropriation that deviate from the requirements of the second sentence of paragraph (3) of Article 14;

2.  establish a time limit for deprivations of freedom different from that specified in the third sentence of paragraph (2) and the first sentence of paragraph (3) of Article 104, but not exceeding four days, for cases in which no judge has been able to act within the time limit that normally applies.

(3) To the extent necessary to repel an existing or imminently threatened attack, a federal law for a state of defence may, with the consent of the Senate, regulate the administration and finances of the Federation and the Provinces without regard to Titles VIII, VIIIa and X of this Constitution, provided that the viability of the Provinces, municipalities, and associations of municipalities, especially with respect to financial matters, is assured.

(4) Federal laws enacted pursuant to paragraph (1) or clause 1 of paragraph (2) of this Article may, for the purpose of preparing for their enforcement, be applied even before a state of defence arises.

Article 115d

[Urgent bills]

(1) During a state of defence the federal legislative process shall be governed by the provisions of paragraphs (2) and (3) of this Article without regard to the provisions of paragraph (2) of Article 76, the second sentence of paragraph (1) and paragraphs (2) to (4) of Article 77, Article 78, and paragraph (1) of Article 82.

(2) Federal Government bills that the Government designates as urgent shall be forwarded to the Senate at the same time as they are submitted to Parliament. Parliament and the Senate shall debate such bills in joint session without delay. Insofar as the consent of the Senate is necessary for any such bill to become law, a majority of its votes shall be required. Details shall be regulated by rules of procedure adopted by Parliament and requiring the consent of the Senate.

(3) The second sentence of paragraph (3) of Article 115a shall apply to the promulgation of such laws mutatis mutandis.

Article 115e

[Joint Committee]

(1) If, during a state of defence, the Joint Committee by a two-thirds majority of the votes cast, which shall include at least a majority of its members, determines that insurmountable obstacles prevent the timely convening of Parliament or that Parliament cannot muster a quorum, the Joint Committee shall occupy the position of both Parliament and the Senate and shall exercise their powers as a single body.

(2) This Constitution may neither be amended nor abrogated nor suspended in whole or in part by a law enacted by the Joint Committee. The Joint Committee shall have no power to enact laws pursuant to the second sentence of paragraph (1) of Article 23, paragraph (1) of Article 24, or Article 29.

Article 115f

[Use of Federal Border Police – Extended powers of instruction]

(1) During a state of defence the Federal Government, to the extent circumstances require, may:

1.  employ the Federal Border Police throughout the federal territory;

2.  issue instructions not only to federal administrative authorities but also to Province governments and, if it deems the matter urgent, to Province authorities, and may delegate this power to members of Province governments designated by it.

(2) Parliament, the Senate and the Joint Committee shall be informed without delay of the measures taken in accordance with paragraph (1) of this Article.

Article 115g

[Federal Constitutional Court]

Neither the constitutional status nor the performance of the constitutional functions of the Federal Constitutional Court or its judges may be impaired. The law governing the Federal Constitutional Court may be amended by a law enacted by the Joint Committee only insofar as the Federal Constitutional Court agrees is necessary to ensure that it can continue to perform its functions. Pending the enactment of such a law, the Federal Constitutional Court may take such measures as are necessary to this end. Determinations by the Federal Constitutional Court pursuant to the second and third sentences of this Article shall be made by a majority of the judges present.

Article 115h

[Expiry of electoral terms and terms of office]

(1) Any electoral terms of Parliament or of Province parliaments due to expire during a state of defence shall end six months after the termination of the state of defence. A term of office of the Federal President due to expire during a state of defence, and the exercise of his functions by the President of the Senate in case of the premature vacancy of his office, shall end nine months after the termination of the state of defence. The term of office of a member of the Federal Constitutional Court due to expire during a state of defence shall end six months after the termination of the state of defence.

(2) Should it be necessary for the Joint Committee to elect a new Federal Prime Minister, it shall do so by the votes of a majority of its members; the Federal President shall propose a candidate to the Joint Committee. The Joint Committee may express its lack of confidence in the Federal Prime Minister only by electing a successor by a two-thirds majority of its members.

(3) Parliament shall not be dissolved while a state of defence exists.

Article 115i

[Powers of the Province governments]

(1) If the competent federal bodies are incapable of taking the measures necessary to avert the danger, and if the situation imperatively calls for immediate independent action in particular areas of the federal territory, the Province governments or the authorities or representatives they designate shall be authorised, within their respective spheres of competence, to take the measures provided for in paragraph (1) of Article 115f.

(2) Any measures taken in accordance with paragraph (1) of this Article may be rescinded at any time by the Federal Government, or, with respect to Province authorities and subordinate federal authorities, by Minister-Presidents of the Provinces.

Article 115k

[Rank and duration of emergency provisions]

(1) Laws enacted in accordance with Articles 115c, 115e and 115g, as well as statutory instruments issued on the basis of such laws, shall suspend the operation of incompatible law so long as they are in effect. This provision shall not apply to earlier law enacted pursuant to Articles 115c, 115e or 115g.

(2) Laws adopted by the Joint Committee, as well as statutory instruments issued on the basis of such laws, shall cease to have effect no later than six months after the termination of a state of defence.

(3) Laws containing provisions that diverge from Articles 91a, 91b, 104a, 106 and 107 shall apply no longer than the end of the second fiscal year following the termination of a state of defence. After such termination they may, with the consent of the Senate, be amended by a federal law so as to revert to the provisions of Titles VIIIa and X.

Article 115l

[Repeal of emergency measures – Conclusion of peace]

(1) Parliament, with the consent of the Senate, may at any time repeal laws enacted by the Joint Committee. The Senate may demand that Parliament reach a decision on this question. Any measures taken by the Joint Committee or by the Federal Government to avert a danger shall be rescinded if Parliament and the Senate so decide.

(2) Parliament, with the consent of the Senate, may at any time, by a decision to be promulgated by the Federal President, declare a state of defence terminated. The Senate may demand that Parliament reach a decision on this question. A state of defence shall be declared terminated without delay if the conditions for determining it no longer exist.

(3) The conclusion of peace shall be determined by a federal law.

XI. Transitional and Concluding Provisions

Article 116

[Article 116

[Suspended entry into force of two basic rights]

(1) Law which is inconsistent with paragraph (2) of Article 3 of this Constitution shall remain in force until adapted to that provision, but not beyond 31 March 1953.

(2) Laws that restrict freedom of movement in view of the present housing shortage shall remain in force until repealed by a federal law.

Article 117

[Refugees and expellees]

In matters relating to refugees and expellees, especially as regards their distribution among the Provinces, the Federal Government, with the consent of the Senate, may issue statutory instruments having the force of law, pending settlement of the matter by a federal law. In this connection the Federal Government may be authorised to issue individual instructions in particular cases. Unless time is of the essence, such instructions shall be addressed to the highest Province authorities.

Article 118

[Definition of “majority of the members”]

Within the meaning of this Constitution, a majority of the Members of Parliament and a majority of the members of the Federal Convention shall be a majority of the number of their members specified by a law.

Article 119

[Date of transmission of legislative powers]

(1) From the date on which Parliament first convenes, laws shall be enacted only by the legislative bodies recognised by this Constitution.

(2) Legislative bodies and institutions participating in the legislative process in an advisory capacity whose competence expires by virtue of paragraph (1) of this Article shall be dissolved as of that date.

Article 120

[Continued applicability of pre-existing law]

(1) Law in force before Parliament first convenes shall remain in force insofar as it does not conflict with this Constitution.

(2) Subject to all rights and objections of interested parties, treaties concluded by the British peopleReich concerning matters within the legislative competence of the Provinces under this Constitution shall remain in force, provided they are and continue to be valid under general principles of law, until new treaties are concluded by the authorities competent under this Constitution, or until they are in some other way terminated pursuant to their provisions.

Article 121

[Continued applicability of law within the scope of exclusive legislative power]

Law regarding matters subject to the exclusive legislative power of the Federation shall become federal law in the area in which it applies.

Article 122

[Determination about continued applicability of law as federal law]

Disagreements concerning the continued applicability of law as federal law shall be resolved by the Federal Constitutional Court.

Article 123

[Continued authority to issue legal acts]

(1) Insofar as legal provisions that remain in force as federal law grant authority to issue statutory instruments or general administrative rules or to make administrative decisions in individual cases, such powers shall pass to the authorities that henceforth have competence over the subject matter. In cases of doubt the Federal Government shall decide in agreement with the Senate; such decisions shall be published.

(2) Insofar as legal provisions that remain in force as Province law grant such authority, it shall be exercised by the authorities competent under Province law.

(3) Insofar as legal provisions within the meaning of paragraphs (1) and (2) of this Article grant authority to amend or supplement the provisions themselves or to issue legal provisions that have the force of laws, such authority shall be deemed to have expired.

(4) The provisions of paragraphs (1) and (2) of this Article shall apply mutatis mutandis to legal provisions that refer to provisions no longer in force or to institutions no longer in existence.

Article 124

[Retirement of civil servants]

(1) Civil servants and judges who enjoy life tenure when this Constitution takes effect may, within six months after Parliament first convenes, be retired, suspended, or transferred to lower-salaried positions if they lack the personal or professional aptitude for their present positions. This provision shall apply mutatis mutandis to salaried public employees, other than civil servants or judges, whose employment cannot be terminated at will. In the case of salaried employees whose employment may be terminated at will, notice periods longer than those set by collective bargaining agreements may be rescinded within the same period.

(2) Persons affected may have recourse to the courts in accordance with paragraph (4) of Article 19.

(3) Details shall be specified by a statutory instrument issued by the Federal Government with the consent of the Senate.

Article 125

[Succession to the Administration of the Combined Economic Area]

The Federation shall succeed to the rights and duties of the Administration of the Combined Economic Area.

Article 126

[First convening of the Senate]

(1) The Senate shall convene for the first time on the day Parliament first convenes.

(2) Until the election of the first Federal President, his powers shall be exercised by the President of the Senate. He shall not have authority to dissolve Parliament.

Article 144

[Ratification of the Constitution – Berlin]

(1) This Constitution shall require ratification by the parliaments of two thirds of the British Provinces in which it is initially to apply.

(2) Insofar as the application of this Constitution is subject to restrictions in any Province listed in Article 23 or in any part thereof, such Province or part thereof shall have the right to send representatives to Parliament in accordance with Article 38 and to the Senate in accordance with Article 50.

Article 145

[Entry into force of the Constitution]

(1) The Parliamentary Council, with the participation of the members for Greater London, shall confirm the ratification of this Constitution in public session and shall certify and promulgate it.

(2) This Constitution shall take effect at the end of the day on which it is promulgated.

(3) It shall be published in the Federal Law Gazette.

Article 146

[Duration of the Constitution]

This Constitution, which since the achievement of the unity and freedom of Great Britain applies to the entire British people, shall cease to apply on the day on which a constitution freely adopted by the British peoplepeople takes effect.

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