Tightening of requirements of the German Lobby Register Act

The German Lobby Register Act (Lobbyregistergesetz, LobbyRG) has been in force since 1 January 2022. According to this, lobbyists who contact members of the Bundestag or the Federal Government in order to directly or indirectly influence their decision-making processes are obliged to register in the publicly accessible lobby register. Further information can be found in our article "Lobby register: who does it affect and what needs to be done?"

Statutory amendments to the LobbyRG enter into force on 1 March 2024. Their aim is to further tighten the scope of application and disclosure requirements and thus increase the informative value of the lobby register.


An overview of the amendments


Extension of the scope of application

In future, contacts with employees ofthe bodies, committees, members, parliamentary parties or groups of the German Bundestag as well as contacts at departmental management level will also constitute lobbying within the meaning of the LobbyRG. Previously, this only applied to sub-departmental managements and above.

This takes into account that lobbyists often aim their concerns directly at the working level and thus creates transparency also with regard to these activities. At the same time, the extension of the scope of application creates some uncertainty as to which contact constitutes an act of lobbying, as there are often other reasons for contacting departmental managements.

Supplements to the general disclosures, irrespective of the financial year

In addition, further information must be provided to the lobby register: this includes the address and electronic contact details of any existing office in Berlin. Also new is the obligation to name all persons who directly exercise lobbying activities, i.e. persons who have personal contact with addressees of lobbying in the Bundestag or the Federal Government. In consequence, besides employees, this now also includes persons who regularly and directly act with the knowledge and will of the organisation and represent its interests.

Mandates from the past five years and existing offices or functions in legislative or executive bodies now have to be disclosed. Persons who hold a mandate or office often have networks and knowledge that greatly influence or favour the lobbying (so-called "revolving door effect").

For the purpose of additional transparency, further disclosures now have to be made to the lobby register with regard to the specific lobbying activity carried out:

  • Section 3 (1) No. 4 LobbyRG now requires a specific description of the activity that serves the purpose of lobbying.
  • According to Section 3 (1) No. 5 a) LobbyRG, all current, planned or intended regulatory projects for which lobbying activities are carried out must be named. Which areas of interest or projects are affected and to which applicable laws, if any, the lobbying relates, must be specified.
  • Finally, pursuant to Section 3 (1) No. 5 b) LobbyRG, fundamental written statements and expert opinions submitted to the Bundestag and the Federal Government on the specified regulatory projects will have to be published in the lobby register by the end of the current quarter following their dispatch at the latest. This obligation only applies to statements or expert opinions that are submitted as of 1 March 2024 on the specific regulatory projects specified in the register entry.


Extension of the disclosures relating to the financial year

The number of employees conducting lobbying activities now has to be stated in full-time equivalents (FTE) in order to provide a more realistic picture. Information on incremental levels has been dropped. Instead, the calculation must be based on a model formula that divides the total number of working hours by the average working hours of a full-time job.

In addition, organisations will have to state the main sources of funding for lobbying in descending order of their share in the total income. Stating the amount of the individual revenues is not required, only their order and thus their general weighting.

According to Section 3 (1) No. 8 b) LobbyRG, information must be provided on the annual financial expenditure for lobbying. This must be stated in increments of EUR 10,000 in each case and can no longer be refused.

From now on, information on government grants and subsidies as well as gifts or other inter vivos dispositions from third parties, in particular sponsorship, may no longer be refused. Public grants must already be disclosed if they exceed a threshold of EUR 10,000 (per donor per financial year). In the case of gifts or inter vivos dispositions, the total amount has to be disclosed in increments of EUR 10,000 and individual dispositions have to be included with the name of the respective donor if they exceed the total value of EUR 10,000 per donor in a financial year as well as ten percent of the previously disclosed total annual amount. Donors should therefore be notified that their data will be published in the lobby register for donations as of 1 March 2024.

Legal entities are obliged to (additionally) publish their annual financial statements in the lobby register even if they are already subject to disclosure obligations under commercial law. Published accountability reports must fulfil certain minimum standards, including a statement of income and expenditure, if the total income exceeds EUR 10,000.

In the absence of annual financial statements or accountability reports for the previous financial year, the financial year before last can be used temporarily.

Lobbying commissioned by third parties

The amendment of the law requires more detailed information on contractual relationships in the lobby register if third-party interests are lobbied on behalf of third parties.

In addition to the previously required information on the identity of the client, precise descriptions of the commissioned activities are now also required, including the area of interest or project and the focus on specific regulatory projects. Furthermore, information must be provided on the persons and organisations involved in the lobbying and the financial resources received to implement the contract.

Obligations to update

Instead of the previous annual update, which was based on the arbitrary date of the initial entry, an annual financial year update will be required in future. This must take place no later than six months after the end of the last financial year. In addition to updating the information relating to the financial year, the entire register entry must be fully checked and its accuracy confirmed during this update.

As before, certain information must be updated without undue delay, including the organisation's master data, details on the identity of authorised representatives and information on persons directly involved in the lobbying. Changes in the areas of interest and projects, the description of the general activities of the lobbyist and any existing mandates to lobby third-party interests also have to be reported immediately.

Necessary measures

Organisations or natural persons subject to registration must complete the required information by 30 June 2024. The correctness of the information provided must be confirmed to the entity maintaining the register.

Further information provided by the register authority can be found here: "To-do-list".

If the migration process, including approval and publication, is not completed by 30 June 2024, the lobbyists will automatically be transferred to the list of former lobbyists. As of that date, the lobbyist will no longer be considered to be registered in the lobby register.

The amendment of the law is also of particular relevance to foundations that carry out lobbying activities within the meaning of the LobbyRG.

We would be happy to advise you with regard to the changes that have occurred and support you in implementing or adapting to the new legal situation.

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Dr. Axel Wenzel<br/>LL.M. (Norwich)

Dr. Axel Wenzel
LL.M. (Norwich)


Konrad-Adenauer-Ufer 23
50668 Cologne
T +49 221 2091 455
F +49 221 2091 333

Am Sandtorkai 74
20457 Hamburg
T +49 40 808 105 523



Holger Hofmann

Holger Hofmann


Konrad-Adenauer-Ufer 23
50668 Cologne
T +49 221 2091 449
M +49 172 2458 375



David Falkowski

David Falkowski

Junior PartnerAttorney

Konrad-Adenauer-Ufer 23
50668 Cologne
T +49 221 2091 497
M +49 174 6378 398



Franziska Goetjes<br/>LL.M. (Dublin)

Franziska Goetjes
LL.M. (Dublin)


Konrad-Adenauer-Ufer 23
50668 Cologne
T +49 221 2091 652
M +49 151 21701588