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Organizer is a natural or legal person who runs an event , takes organizational responsibility , bears the entrepreneurial risk and liability .

Legal history

In December 1911, the Reichsgericht dealt with the concept of the organizer as part of a ruling on the copyrights of works of music. The organizer is the one who has arranged an event and through whose activity it is "set to work" (is carried out). Subsequently, in June 1956 , the BGH initially assumed that the organizer was the one who was organizationally and financially responsible for the event in question, i.e. who was responsible for the preparation and implementation and who bore the entrepreneurial risk. In the “Bubi-Scholz” ruling, the BGH sees the activity of the organizer of a boxing event in particular “in the organizational work required for its creation and processing, in the conclusion of contracts ..., in the rental of suitable rooms, in advertising for the individual Events and in the evaluation of the individual event that exhausts the existing economic possibilities ... ". This also includes the sale of tickets and programs, and the ordering of security personnel and the fire brigade. In general, the organizer is referred to as the host for sports performances . In football , the host club is seen as the organizer because, in addition to the economic risk, it also creates the essential organizational requirements for the course of the game. This was confirmed by the BGH in December 1997; Even if the DFB and UEFA create the framework for European Cup matches , the home clubs are the organizers.

Organizer in laws

Various laws use the term organizer, but do not offer a legal definition . According to Section 2, Paragraph 1 of the General Assembly Act , the organizer is anyone who “publicly invites” to an event. The term tour operator is not clearly defined in § 651a BGB , but a company fulfills the criteria of a tour operator if it provides a total of travel services and, according to the other circumstances, it appears that the contractually provided travel services are provided under its own responsibility. The tour operator is obliged under the travel contract according to § 651c Paragraph 1 BGB to provide the trip in such a way that it has the guaranteed properties. Broadcasting company is someone who offers a radio program under their own responsibility for the content (Section 2 (2) No. 14 RStV ). Organizers of public reproductions of musical works must obtain the consent of GEMA prior to an event in accordance with Section 13b (1) UrhWG . Organizers within the meaning of this provision are not only the organizers of live performances within the meaning of Section 81 of the Copyright Act , but also innkeepers , cinema and discotheque operators and broadcasters . According to this provision, the organizer of concerts and other artistic performances in Germany (in addition to the artist) has the right to record, reproduce and distribute the performances.

Obligations of an organizer

The organizer of an event has to fulfill various obligations. This includes:

  • compliance with laws, regulations and requirements
  • Creation of the highest possible security for actors and visitors
  • the appointment of an event manager
  • cooperation with the authorities
  • writing the necessary concepts
  • the duty to maintain safety
  • the establishment of a fire safety watch
  • the establishment of a paramedic service (for an event with more than 5,000 visitors)
  • Instruction and training of the staff

Phases of the event

The organizer is involved in all phases of the event. The organizer, the participants appearing at the event, the operator of the event location and the visitors come into question as participants.

Realization of an event

The implementation of an event includes the planning, preparation, conclusion of contracts with the participants and operators, conclusion of insurance (organizer liability insurance , event accident insurance , cancellation insurance , weather insurance ), advertising, catering, ticket sales, sponsors.


The organizer's organizational responsibility includes coordinating appointments between the venue, participants, security staff and visitors. It also decides on access routes, parking spaces and the start and end of the event. Failure and cancellation of the event in the event of weather-related hazards, because of cancellation by the participants or because of imminent security risks are also the responsibility of the organizer.

Business risk

The organizer has its own economic interest in the event. He tries to keep the costs of the event lower than the expected income (tickets, merchandising, television income). However, if he makes a loss, he has to bear it from his private assets or (in the case of a company as the organizer) from the company's assets.


A distinction must be made between indoor and outdoor events. While the organizer is solely liable for outdoor events, for indoor events (in closed rooms) the organizer and operator are jointly liable. However, the operator can contractually pass his liability on to the organizer. A concrete liability of the organizer results from the contracts that he concludes with the participants, operators of the event location, other parties involved (official permits) and visitors. In general, the organizers here for all damage liability caused by him, his officers , agents , guests or other third parties in connection with the event culpably caused.

According to § 831 BGB, organizers of sporting events, pageants or private celebrations are not liable for harmful actions of their participants and visitors, since the participants and visitors are neither bound by instructions nor socially dependent on the organizer. However , if the organizers open up a source of danger with their event , then - like all surveillance guarantors - they assume traffic safety obligations according to Section 823 (1) BGB. This strict liability is to be affirmed in particular for football matches. The organizer can exclude liability for slight negligence , but these are then general terms and conditions that are subject to judicial review of the terms and conditions.

The organizer is also the point of contact for questions of liability for which he is not responsible. In this way, spectators will demand the ticket price they paid back from the organizer if the promised participants do not appear. He then has to try to reclaim the fee from them.


The concert and tour organizers are represented in Germany by the Federal Association of the Event Industry (bdv) eV.

Web links

Wiktionary: Organizer  - explanations of meanings, word origins, synonyms, translations

Individual evidence

  1. ^ RG, judgment of December 9, 1911, Az .: Rep. I 487/10 = RGZ 78, 84
  2. BGH GRUR 1956, 515, 516 - "Dance courses", BGH GRUR 1960, 606, 607 - "Eisrevue II"
  3. BGH GRUR 1971, 46, 46
  4. BGH, judgment of December 11, 1997, Az .: KVR 7/96 = NJW 1998, 756, 758
  5. Artur-Axel Wandtke (Ed.), Broadcasting and Press Law / Event Law , 2011, p. 164
  6. Jürgen Plate, The entire exam-relevant civil law , 2013, p. 687
  7. Project BaSiGo - Security at large events ( Memento of the original from August 14, 2018 in the Internet Archive ) Info: The archive link was inserted automatically and has not yet been checked. Please check the original and archive link according to the instructions and then remove this notice. - PDF file, accessed October 20, 2018 @1@ 2Template: Webachiv / IABot /
  8. the audience contract concluded with ticket sales is a work contract , so the organizer has to vouch for success
  9. Annette Albrecht, The tortious liability for behavior of others in French and German law , 2013, p. 127