Country Profile: Austria

This Country Profile provides a basic overview of the legal history and institutional structures of the Republic of Austria (Republik Österreich), based on research produced by GlobaLex at NYU Law School and the Library of Congress. Under Austria's Constitution, Islamic law (sharīʿa or fiqh) has no legal status.

Country Background

Austria is located in Central Europe. It is bounded by Czech Republic, Germany, Hungary, Italy, Liechtenstein, Slovakia, Slovenia, and Switzerland. The capital of Austria is Vienna. The official language is German nationwide with Croatian recognized as official in Burgenland. The country’s population in 2016 was approximately 8.7 million. Austria is a predominantly Christian country, with about 74% of the population Catholic. Islam is a minority religion in Austria, and Muslims make up about 4% of the country's population.

Constitution & Legal Structure

Austria is a federal parliamentary republic. It is a civil law country with judicial review of legislative acts by the Constitutional Court. The system of government is based on principles of separation and checks and balances and has three branches: legislative, executive, and judicial. Austria is a member state of the European Union.

Constitutional Status of Islamic Law

Islamic law has no constitutional status in Austria.

Jurisdiction(s) of Islamic Law

Islamic law has no official jurisdiction of operation in Austria.

Dominant School of Islamic Law

Austria has no official school of Islamic law. 

Sources of Law for Legal Research

Official Publications

 Unofficial Databases


For an extended list of legal resources for this country, see the Library of Congress’s Research Guide, and for a narrative review, see the GlobaLex Foreign Law Research Guide (most updated version, where available). The Constitution is available in the LOC Guide in its original language and at Constitute in English and Arabic translation. For full versions of past constitutions, amendments, and related legislation, see HeinOnline World Constitutions Illustrated or Oxford Constitutions of the World [subscription required for each].