Enjoying the German legal language

Participants from three countries at the Faculty of Law in Novi Sad.
Participants from three countries at the Faculty of Law in Novi Sad.

The final weekend of the ‘Introduction to German Law and German Legal Language’ course funded by the German Federal Foreign Office took place in Novi Sad from 15 to 17 December 2023.

The implementation in the form of a hybrid course with weekly online lessons and an attendance weekend also made it possible for interested parties with sufficient knowledge of German from other cities and countries in the region to participate.

The young lawyers from Bosnia and Herzegovina, North Macedonia and Serbia completed a final certificate test. Among other things, this included a presentation in German – modelled on the file presentation in German state law examinations – the topic of which was only announced shortly beforehand. ‘Arguing (almost) everything with good arguments’ was the motto to stimulate a controversial discussion. This aspect was given particular consideration in the selection of topics. As part of their presentations, the participants argued questions that they could not prepare for with theoretical knowledge. Is the deliberate killing of extraterrestrials a criminal offence? Are clones ‘descendants’ in the sense of inheritance law and if so, from whom? These and similar questions stimulated the discussions in German, and even if the participants were unable to find a unified point of view, they enjoyed the discussions.

Although the participants had a great deal of respect for this exam, they passed it with great eloquence. As a result, they were not only able to take the certificate home with them, but also the self-confidence that they can speak publicly on legal topics in German.

The young lawyers also used the event to get to know each other and to expand their networks with German-speaking colleagues in the region.

They reported extensively on the event in social networks, an example can be found here.

The event was organised on the initiative of the Faculty of Law at the University of Novi Sad, which also cooperates with the University of Potsdam.