Law for the Restoration of the Professional Civil Service

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The Law for the Restoration of the Professional Civil Service , in short professional Civil Service Act ( BBG ), was after the takeover by the Nazis adopted on 7 April 1933 and allowed the new authorities in the German Reich , Jewish and politically unpopular officials from service to remove. The goals of the law, which was published under the leadership of Wilhelm Frick , were the realization of the racial and anti-communist / fascist goals of the NSDAP and the harmonization of the public service .

Reichsgesetzblatt of April 7, 1933: First sheet of the law for the restoration of the professional civil service


Political opponents of National Socialism ("civil servants who, after their previous political activities, do not guarantee that they will always stand up for the national state without reservation") could be retired or dismissed from service according to § 4.

In addition, civil servants had to be dismissed who had entered their profession after 1918 without being able to provide evidence of the previous education required for the career. These were referred to in the parlance as "party book officials".

§ 3 is one of the best known examples of an " Aryan paragraph ". "Officials of non-Aryan descent" were already those who had only one Jewish grandparent in their family tree , according to Section 3 (1) of the "First Ordinance on the Implementation of the Law for the Restoration of the Professional Civil Service" . You could now be fired or retired early. According to Section 3 (2), however, “non-Aryan” civil servants should be left on duty if they had already been employed before August 1914 (old civil servant rule), or who fought on the front in the World War for the German Reich or for its allies or their father or sons died in the world war . The exemption for front-line fighters was referred to as the " frontline fighter privilege ". Reich President Paul von Hindenburg had requested this clause in a letter to Adolf Hitler as an exception.

From now on, all persons with official status had to provide the so-called Aryan certificate , which was supposed to prove that the official had no ancestors of Jewish religious affiliation. The following documents were to be presented: the birth certificate , the birth or baptism certificates of the parents and grandparents, the marriage or marriage certificates of the parents and grandparents and, if applicable, military papers. The officers had to submit these documents to the head of the authority within 14 days. If the official was unable to produce the required documents, he had to assure that he had tried all possible means and, as proof, enclose all the letters of reply from the registry offices and parish offices to which he had written. In case of doubt, a newly established department of the expert for race research at the Reich Ministry of the Interior in Berlin should be consulted.

According to Section 6 of the Act, civil servants could also be retired “to simplify administration” without giving a reason. The vacancies should not be filled again. This paragraph was "used extensively" to fire those "non-Aryans" who were supposed to be exempted as "veterans, war veterans or relatives of the fallen". All of the exceptions mentioned were repealed by the Nuremberg Laws . Jewish officials who were still able to practice their profession were dismissed by December 31, 1935 at the latest.

Numerous implementing regulations were issued in quick succession. In the Third Implementation Ordinance of May 6, 1933 (RGBl. I, p. 245), judges, teachers, university lecturers and notaries were expressly named as civil servants within the meaning of the law . Later on, employees and workers in the public service as well as at the Reichsbank and Reichsbahn were also included by ordinances .

A retirement pension was not granted to all groups of compulsory retirees. The granted retirement benefits were reduced in 1938 by the “Seventh Ordinance on the Reich Citizenship Law ”.


Repainted office sign of the lawyer and notary Werner Liebenthal in Martin-Luther-Strasse , Berlin 1933, who was banned from working on July 6, 1933

As far as Jews were concerned, the significance of this law extended far beyond the public service and served as a benchmark for the exercise of "professions with public or legal effect" such as notaries and patent attorneys .

Contrary to the expectations of the National Socialists , a considerable number of Jewish civil servants fulfilled the exceptional conditions of the old civil servant regulation and the “front-line fighter privilege”. Presumably, almost half of the approximately 5,000 Jewish officials were therefore initially able to remain on duty. Later, with the First Ordinance on the Reich Citizenship Act of November 14, 1935, civil servant status was tied to a newly created Reich citizenship, which was reserved for "German-blooded" people: this meant that all Jewish civil servants had to resign at the end of 1935.

Even in the Weimar Republic there were measures to relieve the public budgets through job cuts. As a reason for dismissal, the National Socialists used this option provided for in Section 6 to a greater extent. In Hamburg, for example, 555 of 637 teachers were dismissed by 1935, citing Section 6. In the same period, however, 468 of these positions were filled again, so that the alleged savings measure was more of a pretext to be able to employ National Socialist-minded teachers.

At German universities, 18-19% of the teaching staff was dismissed due to the Professional Civil Servants Act, the First Ordinance on the Reich Citizenship Act and similar ordinances. The relatively small group of female lecturers, 38% of whom were expelled from the universities, was even more affected.


National Socialist party supporters had used violence against officials since March 1933, especially in the judicial sector. Judges and prosecutors had been assaulted and driven from their offices; State ministers of justice had issued compulsory leave of absence and issued house bans . Bourgeois circles and the part of the press that was not yet controlled by the National Socialists were relieved that the riots and the "riot anti-Semitism" had come to an end through a legal regulation of the "Jewish question". The view that the supposedly overpowering influence of the Jewish “foreign culture” should be curtailed was widespread beyond the circle of party supporters.


Saul Friedländer writes: “This law, in its most general intent, was aimed at reshaping the entire government bureaucracy to ensure its loyalty to the new regime. His exclusionary measures, which applied to more than two million state and municipal employees, were directed against the politically unreliable, mainly communists and other opponents of the National Socialists, and against Jews. "

The historian Uwe Dietrich Adam calls the term “law for the restoration of the professional civil service” a “cynical reversal of the actual facts”. The law also marks a turning point and is the unmistakable starting point of a strategy that is formally secured by law and aimed at eliminating the Jewish minority.

Peter Longerich points out that the first two anti-Jewish laws of April 7, 1933 mean “a massive encroachment on the civil equality of Jews that has been in effect in the German Reich since 1871”.

Daniel Goldhagen evaluates the early anti-Jewish measures as follows: “The elimination of the Jews was Hitler's goal from the start. It began as early as 1933 with the exclusion of Jews from society. "

Comparable regulations

Also on April 7, 1933, the “ Law on Admission to the Bar ” was drawn up, which contained the relevant regulations. To the disappointment of the anti-Semites , "only" around 40% of Jewish lawyers across the country had to quit their professional activities, as many were protected by the " frontline fighter privilege ".


The law to restore the civil service was repealed by the Allied Control Council Law No. 1 on the repeal of Nazi law of September 20, 1945. In the law regulating the reparation of National Socialist injustices for members of the public service of May 11, 1951 (BWGöD), victims who had returned to Germany by May 23, 1949 were granted a right to preferential re-employment or the payment of a pension that the entitled person would have achieved if he had remained on duty. This law was followed on May 18, 1952 by BWGöD foreign countries for members of the public service who had emigrated under persecution pressure. Both laws were repealed by the War Consequences Conclusion Act (DKfAG) of September 20, 1994.


Web links

Individual evidence

  1. ^ Peter Longerich: Politics of Destruction. An overall presentation of the National Socialist persecution of the Jews . Munich 1998, ISBN 3-492-03755-0 , pp. 42 and 600.
  2. ^ Diana Schulle: Das Reichssippenamt. An institution of National Socialist racial politics (Diss. 1999). Berlin 2001, ISBN 3-89722-672-3 , p. 86.
  3. ^ Raul Hilberg : The annihilation of the European Jews. Frankfurt / Main 1990, ISBN 3-596-10611-7 , vol. 1, p. 90.
  4. ^ Document archive / Günter Plum: Economy and working life. In: Wolfgang Benz (Ed.): The Jews in Germany 1933–1945. Munich 1988, ISBN 3-406-33324-9 , p. 286.
  5. Amount of remuneration in: Bernhard Müller: everyday life in civilization break ... Munich 2003, ISBN 3-935877-68-4 , p. 86.
  6. ^ Günter Plum: Economy and working life. In: Wolfgang Benz (Ed.): The Jews in Germany 1933–1945. Piper-Verlag, Munich 1988, ISBN 3-406-33324-9 , p. 286.
  7. ^ Peter Longerich: Politics of Destruction. Pp. 42-43.
  8. Hans-Peter de Lorent : Nazi biographies. In: Hamburger Lehrerzeitung (hlz) issue 01/02 2007, p. 48.
  9. See Michael Grüttner / Sven Kinas: The expulsion of scientists from German universities 1933–1945 , in: Vierteljahrshefte für Zeitgeschichte , issue 1 (2007), pp. 139–142.
  10. Peter Longerich: "We didn't know anything about it ..." Pantheon, Munich 2006 ISBN 3-88680-843-2 , pp. 63–66.
  11. Saul Friedländer: The Third Reich and the Jews: Vol. 1, The Years of Persecution: 1933-1939 , through. Special edition Munich 2007, ISBN 978-3-406-56681-3 , p. 40.
  12. Uwe Dietrich Adam: Jewish policy in the Third Reich. Uncompromised Reprint from 1972, Düsseldorf 2003, ISBN 3-7700-4063-5 , pp. 48-49.
  13. Peter Longerich: "We didn't know anything about it" ..., Munich 2006, ISBN 3-88680-843-2 , p. 63.
  14. By “elimination” he understands the Holocaust in this context; he now considers the word factually more correct than “genocide”. Source: Spiegel conversation: “Murderers may be murdered”, in: DER SPIEGEL, No. 41/2009, pp. 134–140.
  15. ^ Peter Longerich: Politics of Destruction. P. 43 / In Hamburg 69 of 189 Jewish lawyers were excluded - see Heiko Morisse: Jüdische Rechtsanwälte in Hamburg… Hamburg 2003, ISBN 3-7672-1418-0 , pp. 31–32.
  16. Federal Law Gazette I p. 291
  17. BGBl. I p. 2442, 2452
  18. ^ Federal Ministry of Finance : Compensation for Nazi injustice. Restitution regulations as of February 2018, 1.8 Special statutory compensation regulations, p. 10.