Press and publishing in Germany

Damm & Mann

Due to their skilful representation of publishers and media companies, Damm & Mann's press and freedom of speech practice is among the market leaders in this area, whereby the group predominantly focuses on cases related to political and economic reporting, especially those that raise fundamental legal issues before the BGH and the Federal Constitutional Court. The group is also active on the side of affected parties which are usually companies and industrialist families who require support to prevent unlawful media reporting, as well as journalists and NGOs facing claims. Roger Mann and Holger Nieland are the key contacts.

Other key lawyers:

Roger Mann; Holger Nieland


‘Ideal combination of theoretical penetration and forensic implementation.’

‘Highly specialized law firm for freedom of speech and media law. Decades of experience in this field, both in consulting and in litigation. Well networked in the legal profession with a high reputation also with the relevant arbitration bodies of the courts.’

‘Roger Mann is the head of the team. Pleasant, calm and collegial in dealing with, at the same time assertive in the process. Very balanced and thoughtful advisor.’

‘The law firm is a team highly specialized in press law with many years of experience in media representation, especially in representing publishers. In press law (right of expression), the law firm also has excellent expertise in representing companies and institutions that oppose media publications. The team is always “up-to-date”, partly because Roger Mann is on the committee of the specialist journal “Archive for Press Law” (AfP).’

‘Roger Mann: Absolute specialist in press and freedom of speech; represents his clients consistently, sustainably and with great bite and great tactical finesse.’

Key clients

Stiftung Warentest


Center of International Policy

Greenpeace UK


Erzdiözese Freiburg

Susanne Klatten

Asklepios Kliniken

Les Editions Albert René (Asterix)

Pfizer Deutschland

Gruner + Jahr

Penguin Random House

DLA Piper

DLA Piper‘s world-class press team impresses with an ‘outstanding broad coverage’. The team around the renowned Stefan Engels has extensive expertise that guarantees support ‘from a single source’ and ranges from press and copyright law to reputation management, legal protection and general media law. In the publishing sphere, the group’s representation of clients such as Axel Springer, Spiegel and Bild in disputes up to and before the Federal Court of Justice is particularly notable. Finally, the practice particularly often assists with issues pertaining to war reporting, youth protection regulations and the right to access information.

Practice head(s):

Stefan Engels


‘Stefan Engels and his IP team act in an advisory and forensic capacity for almost all media law cases. They have an excellently broad coverage and thus also good interlocking in the field of commercial legal protection and media law, so that advice and support “from a single source” is guaranteed.’

‘Stefan Engels is particularly valued as an excellent lawyer and very good strategist and tactician, who is excellently networked and has very deep knowledge of the media industry and the media business. His commitment and ability to “think outside the box” of the specific mandate and to fully support the client deserve special mention.’

NESSELHAUF Rechtsanwälte

Well-known Hamburg firm NESSELHAUF Rechtsanwälte is among the market leaders for representing affected parties, where the team particularly focuses on the prevention of negative publications and the enforcement of legal claims resulting from illegal publications. Till Dunckel, Michael Nesselhauf and the 'professionally excellent' Stephanie Vendt are the key contacts.


‘Market-leading team of experts with years of experience.’

‘Stephanie Vendt is extremely experienced and well connected. Very committed, fast, practical and to the point and always calm. A rock in the surf in crises. Also very good and efficient in negotiating and drafting complex contracts.’

‘The lawyers work at the highest level and are characterized by an outstanding, unwavering commitment to the interests of their clients. The law firm regularly acts in the background and does not attract public attention. The team can be recommended without reservation.’

‘Stephanie Vendt is especially recommended. She is technically excellent, enjoys the unrestricted trust of her clients, is an excellent negotiator and has excellent contacts in the market and a lot of experience.


Raue is one of the top addresses for the representation of publishers in Berlin and across Germany, not least due to practice head Jan Hegemann‘s extensive experience as well as the team’s established client relationships, with Axel Springer in particular standing out as a key client. The practice frequently advises on the legality of publishing online articles or hate comments on social media, but also assists with pre-tial issues, represents companies in court in proceedings on freedom of speech, as well as advising companies in media crisis situations. In January 2021, Felix Laurin Stang and Anna-Sophie Hollenders were promoted to the partnership, while counsel Jan Sorge left the firm at the beginning of 2022.

Practice head(s):

Jan Hegemann


‘The cooperation with Raue is exceptionally good. The mixture of very fast response times and excellent assessments (also friendly, smart and always calm) is something that greatly enriches the client’s everyday work. Raue not only thinks legally, but also very journalistically. However, Raue is never unjustifiably offensive, but always delivers very precise risk assessments and gives us the choice of how far we want to go.’

‘Jan Hegemann represents with unparalleled experience and quality. In direct cooperation as well as in court, he shines through intellectual speed, cleverness, detailed knowledge of the case, rhetorical brilliance, commitment and reliability. It’s a pleasure to see him in court.’

Schertz Bergmann Rechtsanwälte

In Berlin and throughout Germany, Schertz Bergmann Rechtsanwälte is primarily known for its representation of celebrities: entrepreneurs, athletes and other individuals benefit from the group's longstanding experience in reputation protection and suspicion-based reporting. Within this sphere, the practice has recently been able to increase its involvement in the finance and real estate, logistics and pharmaceuticals sectors, while also experiencing an increasing number of instructions by companies, associations and clubs. Helge Reich, Sophie Heuchemer and Christian Schertz are the key contacts.


‘The law firm offers comprehensive support and advice that goes beyond the mere field of media law.’

‘Fast response in the event of a crisis. Good know-how in media law.’

‘Helge Reich is excellent and the collaboration works great. A real enrichment, especially in the development of strategies.’

‘Extremely high level of competence in the area of personal rights in the filming of real events and in the press area. Very good tactical advice. Lots of practical experience. ‘

‘Responsive and always helpful, pragmatic approaches, high solution orientation, reliable, trusting.’

‘Helge Reich is always available and has found a solution in every situation so far, even at short notice and, above all, beyond what we expected. He contributes his own approaches and thinks along with you. Outstanding advice.’

Key clients

DFB Deutscher Fußball Bund

DOSB Deutscher Olympischer Sportbund


Tönnies Holding

UFA Fiction GmbH

DPD Deutschland GmbH

Zalando SE

Ziegler Film GmbH & Co. KG

Deutsches Rotes Kreuz e.V. und diverse DRK Organisationen

Sparkasse Oberlausitz-Niederschlesien


Bündnis 90/Die Grünen

RB Leipzig

Daimler AG

L’TUR Tourismus AG

SPD (Sozial Demokratische Partei Deutschland)

HGHI Holding

FC Union Berlin e.V.

FC Schalke 04

SIGNA Holding

Akelius GmbH

AFVD American Football Verband Deutschland

Berliner Wasserbetreibe AöR


HÖCKER is regarded for its preventive advice and representation of affected parties in matters pertaining to press law, freedom of speech as well as at the interface between freedom of speech and competition law. Most recently, Carsten Brennecke assisted the Archdiocese of Cologne with the handling of critical reporting as a result of the publication of an abuse report, while Ralf Höcker successfully represented the Dutch royal couple in proceedings against Axel Springer and photo agency action press related to the publication of vacation photos. Marcel Leeser is another key contact. Of counsel Hans-Georg Maassen left the firm at the beginning of 2021.

Practice head(s):

Ralf Höcker

Other key lawyers:

Carsten Brennecke; Marcel Leeser

Key clients

Cannamedical Pharma GmbH

DPolG Bundespolizeigewerkschaft

Eismann Beteiligungen S.a.r.l.

Erzbistum Köln

Kardinal Rainer Maria Woelki

Karel Fajfr

Landgard e.G.

Securitas Holding GmbH

Seine Majestät Willem-Alexander, König der Niederlande und  Ihre Majestät Königin Máxima

Susanne Laugwitz-Aulbach

Work highlights

  • Accompaniment of the Archdiocese of Cologne through the crisis surrounding the termination of an order for an abuse report, the creation of a new abuse report and the critical reporting that has continued to this day after the publication of the Gercke report.
  • Representation of the royal couple under press law against Axel Springer (picture on Sunday) and the action press photo agency for the publication of holiday photos of the royal couple.
  • Successful action by figure skating coach Karel Fajfr for injunctive relief and damages following false allegations by a former student.

Redeker Sellner Dahs

In the press and freedom of speech field, Redeker Sellner Dahs' media team primarily advises state bodies, private individuals and industrial companies on the run-up of media reports, the response to media inquiries as well as necessary measures in reaction to reputation damaging media reporting. Gernot Lehr heads the team and Christian Mensching is recommended.

Practice head(s):

Gernot Lehr

Other key lawyers:

Christian Mensching


ADVANT Beiten‘s Munich-based media practice is headed by Holger Weimann and advises publishers, broadcasters and content providers on press, freedom of speech, copyright and personal rights issues. In May 2020, Oliver Srocke, previously at SCHULTZ – SÜCHTING, joined the Hamburg office and, in addition to various media instructions, also kept SPIEGEL as a client. The client base further includes local and regional newspapers as well as specialist journal publishers.

Practice head(s):

Holger Weimann

Key clients

Abendzeitung München Verlags-GmbH


Mediengruppe RTL Deutschland

Abendzeitung Digital GmbH & Co. KG

Work highlights

  • Constant advice to DER SPIEGEL, SPIEGEL ONLINE, MANAGER MAGAZIN on press and publishing law, including representation before the Federal Constitutional Court.
  • Representing SPIEGEL in a landmark case before the Federal Constitutional Court on the distinction between factual allegations and expressions of opinion.
  • Permanent advice from Abendzeitung München Verlags-GmbH. Among other things: defense against injunctive relief and claims for damages; Checking and approval of photo and text contributions before publication.


BUSE's Nina Lüssmann and Volker Perten advise professional and private individuals and in some cases also companies on press and publishing law issues, with reputation protection increasingly becoming the group's mainstay.

Practice head(s):

Volker Perten; Nina Lüssmann


From its Hamburg location, CMS assists broadcasters, prestigious publishers and online content providers with the entire spectrum of press and freedom of speech matters, but also advises affected business individuals as well as public bodies and politicians. The practice, including key contacts Michael Fricke and Martin Gerecke, deals with issues such as false media reporting, defends clients against official warning letters, tracks and eliminates reputational damage caused by social media posts and also assists with the deletion of Google search results.

Practice head(s):

Michael Fricke

Other key lawyers:

Martin Gerecke


DÜNNWALD LEGAL relies on the expertise and longstanding experience of Dirk Dünnwald, who founded the firm in 2020 and has been representing affected parties for more than 20 years; he was joined by associate Daniela Thurner, who focuses on the protection of personal rights in the social media sphere as well as on data protection issues and contributes 'to all matters in a professional and profitable way'. The duo mainly assists companies with investigative and media-related matters and crisis situations, whereby the enforcement of freedom of speech rights represents another important pillar of the practice.

Practice head(s):

Dirk Dünnwald

Other key lawyers:

Daniela Thurner


‘Very good knowledge of the facts. Understanding of clients’ sensitivities. Very high legal competence.’

‘Dirk Dünnwald has a lot of experience in press, media and freedom of speech law and is a good adviser and representative of interests, who anticipates and knows how to avoid conflicts, but also masters the keyboard of consistent judicial enforcement of claims. A good recommendation for all cases.’

‘Daniela Turner contributes to all matters in a professional and profitable way.’

‘The law firm DÜNNWALD RECHTSANWÄLTE combines profound professionalism with a measured eye for practical solutions.’

‘High competence in media law and very good contacts to publishers and broadcasters.’

‘Dirk Dünnwald is a luminary in the right of expression. ‘

‘Dirk Dünnwald is certainly one of the leading German experts in this field of practice; personally very pleasant and obliging; very good responsiveness.’

‘Dirk Dünnwald is a very experienced media and press lawyer. With his many years of experience in dealing with special chambers at various courts and influential players on the media side, you are perfectly positioned as a client with Mr. Dünnwald at your side.’

Key clients


BayWa AG

Signal Iduna Versicherungsgruppe

Roland Berger Unternehmensberatung

GALERIA Karstadt Kaufhof GmbH

Ferring Arzneimittel GmbH

NASCO Energie & Rohstoff AG

Verband der Privaten Krankenversicherung e.V.

Deutsches Aktieninstitut e.V.

HSV Fussball AG

Hasso Plattner Institut für Digital Engineering gGmbH

Hauck & Aufhäuser Privatbankiers AG

Work highlights

  • Ongoing free speech advice and representation for SAP.
  • Ongoing free speech advice and representation of GALERIA Karstadt Kaufhof GmbH in enforcing free speech claims against various media.
  • Ongoing legal advice from the Association of Private Health Insurance eV on how to deal with reporting on private health insurance issues; Advice on/preparation of program complaints against TV contributions in public broadcasting.

KNPZ Rechtsanwälte

KNPZ Rechtsanwälte's team around Gerald Neben is particularly known for its ongoing advice to publishing houses Bauer and Springer on copyright, freedom of speech and competition law matters.

Practice head(s):

Gerald Neben

Prinz Rechtsanwälte

Matthias Prinz' longstanding experience in representing affected parties is continuously sought after by clients such as the Swedish royal family, the Monegasque royal family and Volkswagen. Prinz Rechtsanwälte's team also includes Diana Grun, who focuses on press and freedom of speech advice and representation of companies and private individuals as well as on reputation protection.

Practice head(s):

Matthias Prinz

Other key lawyers:

Diana Grün

Key clients

Volkswagen AG

Porsche SE

Deutsche Bank AG

Knorr Bremse AG

Kempinski AG

Osram AG

Home24 SE

Scholz & Friends Family GmbH

Bermel von Luxburg Gallery

Funke Gruppe GmbH

A&O Holding GmbH & Co. KG

Juice Plus

Hotel Adlon

AOK Baden-Württemberg

Berenberg Bank

Deutsches Rotes Kreuz

Helios Klinikum Bad Saarow GmbH

VFB Stuttgart

Kunstpalast Düsseldorf

Colegio Humboldt Caracas

Deserted Fear

Monegassisches Fürstenhaus

Schwedisches Fürstenhaus

Aga Khan

Stefan Aust

Nadja Swarovski

Julian Reichelt

Edi Rama (albanischer Ministerpräsident)

Dagmar Wöhrl

Dominik Elstner (Sohn von Hannelore Elstner)

Nadine Leopold (internationales Fotomodel)

Munich Models

Work highlights

  • Support for Volkswagen AG in disputes related to the diesel crisis.
  • Supervision of all legal matters of the Monegasque princely house in German-speaking countries.
  • Supervision of all legal matters of the Swedish royal family in German-speaking countries.

SKW Schwarz

SKW Schwarz Rechtsanwälte's media team, headed by Konstantin Wegner, also fields an established press and publishing law practice whose expertise further covers the interface to IP and digital business; Johann Heyde regularly represents publishers on consent declarations for digital content, while counsel Pia Sökeland frequently assists with judicial and extrajudicial disputes pertaining to freedom of speech and privacy. The group recently advised a publisher on a high-volume matter in the pharmaceutical publishing sector, which related to the digital cooperation between Google and the Federal Ministry of Health.

Practice head(s):

Konstantin Wegner

Other key lawyers:

Johann Heyde; Pia Sökeland


‘Technically first league. Responsive. Great for both complex issues and high-frequency day-to-day business.’

‘Konstantin Wegner: technically well-founded; Leads a well-organized team, always with an eye on the bigger picture. Pia Sökeland: Outstanding litigator in press and copyright law, highest competence, always client- and solution-oriented.’

‘The best in book publishing: pragmatic, creative, hands-on’

‘Johann Heyde is a very good contract lawyer with a very good market overview in the areas of publishing, marketing and music. He is a very convincing negotiator and works consistently and reliably.’

‘Johann Heyde: very good strategist, negotiator and litigator; in-depth knowledge of copyright and media law; in particular also the law of the collecting societies.’

‘Kontantin Wegner is a leading media lawyer. Competent, well networked, experienced.’

Key clients

Penguin Random House Verlagsgruppe GmbH

Piper Verlag GmbH

Europa Verlag GmbH & Co. KG

PAL Verlagsgesellschaft mbH

Work highlights

  • Legal support and litigation of a publisher against the Federal Ministry of Health because of digital cooperation between Google and the Federal Ministry of Health wg. portal.
  • Comprehensive support and advice to Penguin Random House Verlagsgruppe GmbH on media and freedom of speech law, in particular handling disputes related to freedom of speech.
  • Intensive copyright and contractual support for PAL Verlagsgesellschaft mbH in all publishing areas.

SSB Söder Schwarz Berlinger Rechtsanwälte

SSB Söder Schwarz Berlinger Rechtsanwälte's Stefan Söder represents and advises prestigious clients from the electronic and print media on matters concerning free speech, copyright, competition and contract law.

Other key lawyers:

Stefan Söder