English Translations of German Civil and Fiscal Codes

One of the most disconcerting things about moving to a new country is the unfamiliar legal system. Even where there are similarities in how things are done back home, a time often comes when we simply are not sure if something is legal or not. That can be a real issue if you are not fluent in the local language.

Thankfully, the “Bundesministerium der Justiz und für Verbraucherschutz” (“Federal Ministry of Justice and Consumer Affairs”) website has extremely useful translations of the German Civil and Fiscal Codes. These are excellent for checking things relating to landlord and tenant rights, contracts, employment law and the like.

Of course, translations are no substitute for proper legal advice when something goes wrong, especially as the German wording always prevails over the English version. However, they are a good, cost-free way to clarify smaller issues before deciding to seek further advice or engage a lawyer.

The translations of the German Civil Code can be found here and Fiscal Code here. The entire list of documents available with official English translations is here.

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