In 1995, a German federal law created a new type of partnership association for professionals in order to meet their special needs. The new law provides that such a partnerships are legal entities. This gave rise to a renewed debate whether associations unlike societies - the very basis of which being a contractual agreement, could ever be granted the status of legal entity, in the absence of the essential quality of being a concerted unit. However, the point can be made that civil law associations and societies may both be regarded as concerted collectivities, being both therefore destined to be legal entities. But this quality cannot be derived from the nature of collectivity as such. Rather, the status of legal entity may only be granted by others of equal standing within a given social context, or from a higher level, such as the sovereign State. Hence partnership asociations may receive the status of legal entity.