Right after completion of phase one, the bachelor’s program in Business Law (LL.B.), or even while still completing it, students enrolled in the integrated program in Law advance to phase two, the additional four semesters of study that are concluded with the state examination.
At this point, students have sat all their exams from the first state examination in Law (Erste juristische Prüfung) covering the mandatory material except from public law and criminal law in phase one of the program. During four additional semesters of study (phase two), students learn more about these areas and finish the phase with the state examination in criminal law and public law.
At the end of this phase, students graduate from university with a combined bachelor’s degree in Law and Business Administration as well as the first state examination in Law.
What does Abschichtung mean in the context of the state examination?
In short: If you meet certain requirements, you can complete the first state examination in Law in two stages: You will take the exams in private law as part of the bachelor's examination (phase one); then you will sit the exams in criminal law and public law following the additional four semesters of study (phase two). This Abschichtung, or ability to take the first state examination in stages, means that you do not have to sit all of the exams at once.
The Abschichtung is regulated by section 35 b of the Act on Lawyer Training and Examination of the Land of Baden-Württemberg (JAPrO). This regulation from chapter 2 subchapter 5 JAPrO only applies if, first of all, you sit the first state examination in private law after having completed six semesters of study in the bachelor's program, and then sit the remaining exams in public law and criminal law after four additional semesters of study immediately following the bachelor's program.
Who is not eligible for Abschichtung?
Non-compliance with the time frame: If the exam time frame set by section 35 b JAPrO has been exceeded, the exams in private law have to be retaken together with the exams in public law and criminal law at the end of phase two, as is the case with students who sit the regular state examination.
Applicants for the integrated program in Law who have already completed a program of study related to law, business administration, or economics at another university / university of applied sciences / university of cooperative education (Berufsakademie): In this case it must be reviewed whether the applicant has the possibility of Abschichtung for the first state examination in Law in compliance with section 35 b JAPrO. The state examination office of Baden-Württemberg responsible for the state examination in law (LJPA BW) will decide whether the admission requirements for the first state examination have been met. In order to determine the deadlines for Abschichtung (regular period of study: 6 + 4 semesters), the semesters you were enrolled in a program related to law, business administration, or economics at another higher education institution will be counted towards Abschichtung. The LJPA BW will therefore deduct these semesters from the total number of semesters you would normally have to complete the integrated program in Law. This means that if you opt for the possibility of Abschichtung, you will have less time to prepare for your final examinations. This is to ensure that only those candidates can opt for Abschichtung, as per the exception stipulated by the JAPrO, who must acquire the entire legal as well as business and economics-related knowledge in six plus four semesters. If the semesters you spent in a previous law or business administration/
economics program were not counted towards your total number of semesters in accordance with the stipulated time frame, this would mean that you would be given preferential treatment in comparison with students who come to Mannheim to enroll in a bachelor's program for the first time.
Semesters spent in a previous law or business administration/
economics program will still be counted towards your total number of semesters in the context of Abschichtung, even if you waive your right to have successfully completed coursework and examinations recognized, which is generally possible. In case you would like to sit the first state examination in Law right after completion of your bachelor's program – which is also possible for students who have changed their degree program or university – you will most likely need to do this in one go (taking the exams in private law, criminal law, and public law in a bundle), without the possibility of Abschichtung. In order to discuss your specific case, please contact the program managers of the Department of Law after your enrollment during the first semester at fachstudienberatung(at)jura.uni-mannheim.de
What will happen if I cannot opt for Abschichtung during my program of study?
Phase one: During this phase of study, there is no difference between students who can opt for Abschichtung and those who cannot up to the point they reach the end of their sixth semester. At this point, students who cannot opt for Abschichtung take the exams in private law that are usually part of the state examination. In this case, however, these exams are only recognized for the bachelor’s degree. They do not count towards the state examination.
Phase two: Again, there is initially no difference between students who can opt for Abschichtung and those who cannot during this phase of study. However, after four additional semesters of study, students who cannot opt for Abschichtung will sit all six exams that are part of the state examination at once. That means, that you will take the exams in private law, criminal law, and public law in a bundle (like students enrolled in a regular law program).
For specific questions regarding your studies without Abschichtung, please contact the program managers at fachstudienberatung(at)jura.uni-mannheim.de
For more information, please consult:
Dean's Office of the Department of Law
Schloss Westflügel – Room W 220
During the lecture period: Tue and Thu 10 a.m. – noon and 2–4 p.m.
During the semester break: Wed 10 a.m. – noon.
(open consultation hours)
Closed from 24.12.2018–01.01.2019.