Federal Law (Austria)

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A federal law is a legal norm adopted by parliament - according to the procedure provided for this in the federal constitution ( main article: legislative procedure (Austria) ). The state laws are to be distinguished from this .


Federal laws are published without exception in the Federal Law Gazette for the Republic of Austria , since 1997 in Part I of the Federal Law Gazette.


One distinguishes

  • Federal constitutional laws and constitutional provisions , these are laws and provisions contained in simple laws that amend or supplement the Austrian Federal Constitution. They must be expressly designated as a federal constitutional law or constitutional provision and their adoption requires special presence and majority conditions in parliament ( see main article legislative procedure (Austria) )
  • simple federal laws


Unless otherwise specified in the law itself, federal laws apply to the entire territory of the Republic of Austria.

Validity period

Federal laws come into effect

  • either at a time specified in the law itself; this can (except in the case of criminal laws, if they are to the detriment of the delinquent) also lie in the past (retroactive validity)
  • otherwise on the day following the announcement in the Federal Law Gazette.

A federal law ends

  • either at a point in time stipulated in the law itself, if the law was only enacted for a certain period of time, or
  • by the fact that it is repealed by the legislature itself ("contrarius actus") or the Constitutional Court, or
  • finally through derogation :
    • In a new federal law it is ordered that an older law (or older legal provisions) be replaced by a new law at a certain point in time - formal derogation (e.g. in the Tenancy Law , which came into force on January 1, 1982 , it was ordered that the Rent Act valid until then expires on December 31, 1981).
    • A new federal law regulates a matter that was already regulated in an older law, without ordering its formal expiry - material derogation ( e.g .: The abolition of subservience to inheritance in the course of the March Revolution in 1848 changed the provisions of the ABGB on hereditary interest and leaseholds are irrelevant; Sections 1122 to 1150 ABGB have not yet been expressly repealed). See also: Lex posterior derogat legi priori . In contemporary law, in the interests of legal certainty and clarity, attempts are made to get along as far as possible without material derogation.

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