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A bill or bill is the fully formulated legal text (draft) that is submitted to the legislative bodies for consultation and voting. Until the final vote, the title of the legal text is called "Draft of a law ...".


Federal laws

At the federal level , according to Article 76.1 of the Basic Law, bills are introduced into the Bundestag by the federal government , from the center of the Bundestag or by the Bundesrat .

According to Section 76 (1 ) of the GOBT , submissions from members of the Bundestag must be signed by at least five percent of the members of the Bundestag or by a parliamentary group .

According to Article 76, Paragraph 2 of the Basic Law, submissions from the Federal Government must first be submitted to the Federal Council. In principle, the latter has six weeks to comment on the bill. An extension of the deadline to nine weeks is possible, as is a reduction in the deadline to three weeks.

According to Article 76.3 of the Basic Law, submissions from the Bundesrat must first be submitted to the Federal Government.

By the end of the 18th legislative period in 2017, 12,396 bills had been introduced into the German Bundestag across all legislative periods. Of these, 7,166 or 58 percent of the proposed bills came from the federal government as the initiator, 3,176 or 26 percent from the Bundestag itself, i.e. its members and parliamentary groups, and 2,054 or 17 percent from the Bundesrat. In the 13th legislative period, 923 bills were introduced, the highest level so far within one legislative period.

Over all legislative periods, most of the bills in the second legislative period were drafted in the Bundestag itself, namely 414. In the 18th legislative period there were only 57 bills left. In the 16th legislative period, the federal government introduced 537 bills to the Bundestag, more than in any other legislative period. The Federal Council reached its highest level in the 13th legislative period, in which it accounted for 329 proposed bills.

Draft bill

Bills submitted by the federal government to the German Bundestag are usually drawn up by the federal ministries and there in particular at department level (federal ministries are divided into departments , subdivisions and units ). Until the decision of the Federal Government of April 24, 1981 to amend the Joint Rules of Procedure of the Federal Ministries (GGO), today's heads of department were referred to as speakers and today's officers as auxiliary officers. This is why the term “draft bill”, which is still in use today, is derived for bills that have not yet been passed by the federal government. The ministerial draft is submitted to the Federal Government for discussion and resolution ( cabinet proposal ).

National Regulatory Control Council

Drafts of federal laws are forwarded to the independent National Regulatory Control Council at the Federal Chancellery for assessment of the bureaucratic costs caused by the law and for comments to the ministries responsible for the draft.

Government draft

Government bills are the bills passed by the federal government and submitted to the German Bundestag. These may differ from the drafts because there may still be changes in the coordination process of those involved (e.g. other federal ministries, states, associations) up to the cabinet decision of the federal government.

Regulations for the federal ministries

The Joint Rules of Procedure of the Federal Ministries (GGO) contain regulations on the procedure for the drafting of bills by the federal ministries .

See also


  • Ulrich Battis : Outsourcing of draft laws? , ZRP 2009, pp. 201-202.
  • Thilo Brandner: Parliamentary Legislation in Crisis Situations - On the Conclusion of the Financial Market Stabilization Act , NVwZ 2009, pp. 211–215.
  • Christoph Gröpl : Abandonment of the “first reading” in the case of amendments to draft laws? - Problematization using the example of Budget Law 2004/2005 of the State of Mecklenburg-Western Pomerania , LKV 2004, pp. 438–442.
  • Michael Kloepfer : Legislative Outsourcing - The creation of draft laws by lawyers , NJW 2011, pp. 131-134.
  • Julian Krüper : lawfirm - legibus solutus ?: Legitimacy and Rationality of the Legislative Procedure in the “Outsourcing” of Bills , JZ 2010, pp. 655–662.
  • Konrad Redeker : Ways to Better Legislation , ZRP 2004, pp. 160–163.

Web links

Wiktionary: draft law  - explanations of meanings, word origins, synonyms, translations

Individual evidence

  1. ^ A b German Bundestag: Data Handbook on the History of the German Bundestag 1949 to 1999 , pp. 2388–2389; Data handbook on the history of the German Bundestag 1990 to 2010 , Chapter 10.1 “Statistics on Legislation”, p. 4.