State of Defense

Article 115 A State of Defense
(1) The determination that federal territory is being attacked by armed force or that such an attack is directly imminent (state of defense) are made by the House of Representatives [Bundestag] with the consent of the Senate [Bundesrat]. Such determination are made at the request of the Government and require a twothirds majority of the votes cast, which include at least the majority of the members of the House of Representatives [Bundestag].
(2) Where the situation imperatively calls for immediate action and where insurmountable obstacles prevent the timely assembly of the House of Representatives [Bundestag], or where there is no quorum in the House of Representatives [Bundestag], the Joint Committee makes this determination with a twothirds majority of the votes cast, which includes at least the majority of its members.
(3) The determination is promulgated in the Federal Law Gazette by the President pursuant to Article 82. Where this cannot be done in time, the promulgation is effected in another manner; subsequently, it has to be printed in the Federal Law Gazette as soon as circumstances permit.
(4) Where the federal territory is being attacked by armed force and where the competent bodies of the Federation are not in a position at once to make the determination provided for in Paragraph I 1, such determination is deemed to have been made and promulgated at the time the attack began. The President announces such time as soon as circumstances permit.
(5) Where the determination of the existence of a state of defense has been promulgated and where the federal territory is being attacked by armed force, the President may, with the consent of the House of Representatives [Bundestag], issue declarations under international law regarding the existence of such state of defense. Where the conditions mentioned in Paragraph II apply, the Joint Committee acts in substitution for the House of Representatives [Bundestag].
 
Article 115 B  Command of the Chancellor
Upon the promulgation of a state of defense, the power of command over the Armed Forces passes to the Chancellor.
 
Article 115 C  Extension of Legislative Powers
(1) The Federation has the right to legislate concurrently in respect of a state of defense even on matters within the legislative powers of the States [Länder]. Such statutes require the consent of the Senate [Bundesrat].
(2) Federal legislation to be applicable upon the occurrence of a state of defense to the extent required by conditions obtaining while such state of defense exists may make:
  1. preliminary provision for compensation to be made in the event of property being taken, in derogation of Article 14 III 2;
  2. provision for a timelimit other than that referred to in Article 104 II 3 & III 1 in respect of deprivations of liberty, but not exceeding four days at the most, in a case where no judge has been able to act within the time limit applying in normal times.
(3) Federal legislation to be applicable upon the occurrence of a state of defense to the extent required for averting an existing or directly imminent attack may, subject to the consent of the Senate [Bundesrat], regulate the administration and the financial system of the Federation and the States [Länder] in derogation of Sections VIII, VIIIa and X, provided that the viability of the States [Länder], communes and associations of communes is safeguarded, particularly in financial matters.
(4) Federal statutes enacted pursuant to Paragraph I or Subparagraph 1 of Paragraph II may, for the purpose of preparing for their enforcement, be applied even prior to the occurrence of a state of defense.
 
Article 115 D   Legislative Process for Urgent Bills
(1) While a state of defense exists, the provisions of Paragraphs II and III apply in respect of federal legislation, in derogation of the provisions of Articles 76 II, 77 I 2 & II to IV, 78, and 82 I.
(2) Bills submitted as urgent by the Government are forwarded to the Senate [Bundesrat] at the same time as they are submitted to the House of Representatives [Bundestag]. The House of Representatives [Bundestag] and the Senate [Bundesrat] debate such bills together without delay. Insofar as the consent of the Senate [Bundesrat] is necessary, the majority of its votes is required for any such bill to become a statute. Details are regulated by rules of procedure adopted by the House of Representatives [Bundestag] and requiring the consent of the Senate [Bundesrat].
(3) Article 115a III 2 also applies in respect of the promulgation of such statutes.
 
Article 115 E  [Powers of Joint Committee]
(1) Where, in a state of defense, the Joint Committee determines with a twothirds majority of the votes cast, which includes at least the majority of its members, that insurmountable obstacles prevent the timely assembly of the House of Representatives [Bundestag] or that there is no quorum in the House of Representatives [Bundestag], the Joint Committee has the status of both the House of Representatives [Bundestag] and the Senate [Bundesrat] and exercises their rights as one body.
(2) The Joint Committee may not enact any statute to amend this Constitution or to deprive it of effect or application either in whole or in part. The Joint Committee is not authorized to enact statutes pursuant to Articles 23 I 2, 24 I, or 29.
 
Article 115 F Powers of Government
(1) In a state of defense, the Government may, to the extent necessitated by circumstances:
  1. use the Federal Border Guard throughout the federal territory;
  2. issue instructions not only to federal administrative authorities but also to State [Land] governments and, where it deems the matter urgent, to State [Land] authorities, and may delegate this power to members of State [Land] governments to be designated by it.
(2) The House of Representatives [Bundestag], the Senate [Bundesrat] and the Joint Committee is informed without delay of the measures taken in accordance with Paragraph I.
 
Article 115 G  Functions of Federal Constitutional Court
The constitutional status and the performance of the constitutional functions of the Federal Constitutional Court and its judges may not be impaired. The Federal Constitutional Court Act may not be amended by a statute enacted by the Joint Committee except insofar as such amendment is required, also in the opinion of the Federal Constitutional Court, to maintain the capability of the Court to function. Pending the enactment of such a statute, the Federal Constitutional Court may take such measures as are necessary to maintain the capability of the Court to carry out its work. Any decisions by the Federal Constitutional Court in pursuance of the second and third sentence of this Article requires a twothirds majority of the judges present.
 
Article 115 H  Constitutional Institutions
(1) Any legislative terms of the House of Representatives [Bundestag] or of State [Land] parliaments due to end while a state of defense exists end six months after the termination of such state of defense. A term of office of the President due to expire while a state of defense exists, and the exercise of his functions by the President of the Senate [Bundesrat] in case of the premature vacancy of the President's office, ends nine months after the termination of such state of defense. The term of office of a member of the Federal Constitutional Court due to expire while a state of defense exists ends six months after the termination of such state of defense.
(2) Should the necessity arise for the Joint Committee to elect a new Chancellor, the Committee does so with the majority of its members; the President proposes a candidate to the Joint Committee. The Joint Committee can express its lack of confidence in the Chancellor only by electing a successor with a twothirds majority of its members.
(3) The dissolution of the House of Representatives [Bundestag] is impossible during a state of defense.
 
Article 115 I   State Governments
(1) Where the competent federal bodies are incapable of taking the measures necessary to avert the danger, and where the situation imperatively calls for immediate independent action in individual parts of the federal territory, the State [Land] governments or the authorities or commissioners designated by them are authorized to take, within their respective spheres of competence, the measures provided for in Article 115f I.
(2) Any measures taken in accordance with Paragraph I of the present Article may be revoked at any time by the Government, or, in relation to State [Land] authorities and subordinate federal authorities, by State [Land] ministerpresidents.
 
Article 115 J  Extraordinary Legal Provisions
(1) Statutes enacted in accordance with Articles 115c, 115e, and 115g, as well as ordinances issued by virtue of such statutes, for the duration of their applicability suspend law which is inconsistent with such statutes or ordinances. This provision does not apply to earlier legislation enacted by virtue of Articles 115c, 115e or 115g.
(2) Statutes adopted by the Joint Committee, as well as ordinances issued by virtue of such statutes, cease to have effect not later than six months after the termination of a state of defense.
(3) Statutes containing provisions that diverge from Articles 91a, 91b, 104a, 106 and 107 applies no longer than the end of the second fiscal year following upon the termination of a state of defense. After such termination they may, with the consent of the Senate [Bundesrat], be amended by federal legislation so as to return to the provisions made in Sections VIIIa and X.
 
Article 115 K Repeal of Extraordinary Measures
(1) The House of Representatives [Bundestag], with the consent of the Senate [Bundesrat], may at any time repeal statutes enacted by the Joint Committee. The Senate [Bundesrat] may demand that the House of Representatives [Bundestag] make a decision on such matter. Any measures taken by the Joint Committee or the Government to avert a danger has to be revoked where the House of Representatives [Bundestag] and the Senate [Bundesrat] so decide.
(2) The House of Representatives [Bundestag], with the consent of the Senate [Bundesrat], may at any time declare a state of defense terminated by a decision to be promulgated by the President. The Senate [Bundesrat] may demand that the House of Representatives [Bundestag] make a decision on such matter. The state of defense has to be declared terminated without delay where the prerequisites for its declaration no longer exist.
(3) The conclusion of peace is subject to federal statute.