Home > 1.1.3 Submission of candidatures > GERMANY - Federal Elections Act
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Section 18

Right to Nominate Candidates, Notification of Participation

(1) Nominations of candidates may be submitted by parties and, in accordance with Section 20, by persons eligible to vote.

(2) Parties which have not been continuously represented by at least five representa-tives in the German Bundestag or in a Landtag (state parliament) since the last election on the basis of their own nominations may only submit nominations as parties if they have given notification of their intended participation in the election to the Federal Returning Officer in writing not later than 6 p.m. on the ninetyseventh day before the election and have been recognized as parties by the Federal Electoral Committee. Such notification must include the name under which the party intends to participate in the election. It must be signed personally and by hand by at least three members of the national executive committee, including the chairman or his deputy. If a party does not have a national executive committee, the executive committee of the party's highest-level organization shall take the place of the national executive committee. The party's written statutes and written program as well as proof that the executive committee has been duly appointed in accordance with the statutes shall be enclosed with the notification. Proof of the party status in accordance with Section 2 subsection (1), first sentence, of the Act on Political Parties should be enclosed with the notification.
(3) The Federal Returning Officer must examine the notification pursuant to subsection (2) immediately upon receipt. If he finds faults in it, he shall immediately notify the executive committee and demand it to rectify the faults that can be corrected. After expira-tion of the submission period for notification, only faults in otherwise valid notifications may be rectified. A notification shall not be deemed valid if
1. the form or deadline prescribed in subsection (2) has not been observed,
2. the name of the party is not stated,
3. the valid signatures required under subsection (2) and the documents to be sub-mitted with the notification are missing, unless such documents cannot be submit-ted on time due to circumstances beyond the party's control,
4. the members of the executive committee have not been adequately designated, so that their identities cannot be established.
Once the decision has been made on the recognition of an association as a party, no ac-tion may be taken to rectify faults. The party's executive committee may appeal to the Federal Electoral Committee against orders issued by the Federal Returning Officer in proceedings concerning the rectifying of faults.
(4) The Federal Electoral Committee shall confirm as binding for all electoral bodies not later than the seventy-ninth day before the election
1. which parties have been continuously represented in the German Bundestag or in a Landtag since the last election by at least five members nominated by the party it-self,
2. which associations, having given notification of their participation pursuant to sub-section (2), shall be recognized as parties for the election; a two-thirds majority is necessary to refuse an association recognition as a party for the election. The con-firmation must be announced by the Federal Returning Officer in the meeting of the Federal Electoral Committee. It must be made public.
(4a) A party or association may lodge a complaint with the Federal Constitutional Court against a confirmation pursuant to subsection (4) which prevents it from submitting nominations within four days after the announcement. In such case the party or associa-tion must be treated by the electoral bodies like a party entitled to submit nominations until a decision has been taken by the Federal Constitutional Court, but not longer than by the end of the fifty-ninth day before the election.
(5) A party may submit only one constituency nomination for each constituency and only one Land list for each Land.