(...) Just like the second, the third edition is not intended to be a simple reprint, as legal methodology thrives on dialogue and the confrontation with conflicting ideas.


This is particularly apparent in a decision that startled the political community. The Federal Constitutional Court (BVerfG) recently described the PSPP ruling of the European Court of Justice (ECJ) as "objectively arbitrary" and "methodologically no longer comprehensible" and qualified it as "legally non-binding". The new edition intends to categorize the theses of the Federal Constitutional Court relating to the limit of permissible further development of the law in a dogmatic legal sense. It wants to present the relevant argumentation figures for a discussion on the cooperative relationship between the Federal Constitutional Court and the European Court of Justice – as demonstrated in the decisions on the right to forget (Recht auf Vergessen). The reader should then be able to judge for himself/herself whether the explanations of the Federal Constitutional Court are convincing.


More detailed specifications were given on:

·   the importance of legal methods for legal thinking (§ 1),

·   the ultra-vires-control of the Federal Constitutional Court (§ 2),

·   the historical interpretation by the ECJ (§ 4),

·   the role of the recitals for the teleological interpretation

·   the relevance of the prevailing opinion (§ 5).


Additional clarifications were added on legal doctrine and the legal principle (§ 9), on the direct third-party effect of European Fundamental Rights (§ 12), on the cooperative relationship between the Federal Constitutional Court, the European Court of Justice and European Court of Human Rights (§ 13), on the hermeneutics of fact, judicial decision-making and legal thinking (§ 14). Newly added are remarks on the interpretation of contracts (§ 6) and on infringement proceedings (§ 12).


Some of the new features were so extensive that individual chapters had to be renumbered. The book has also been published in an English translation: "Legal Methods. How to work with legal arguments, 2020".


XLVII, 598 pages

C.H.BECK. ISBN 978-3-406-76149-2


„A truly great, modern textbook on legal methodology. It sets new standards for education, academia and legal practice because it goes far beyond the traditional (interpretation) method and covers all major methodological questions. What would the capital markets say? This book is a clear buy!“

Professor Dr. Hanno Merkt, Freiburg, in: NZG 20/2018, on the first edition 2017 (translated)