Year (Source) new or changed laws (proposing club, if known)
1892 (IFAB) After there were no umpires who supported the referee since 1889, the the linesmen and -women were introduced in 1892. The referee performs on the field, the linesmen and -women enter it only in exceptional cases. They were subordinate to the referee. Their misconduct must be reported by the referee to the national association. Tasks of them: Observing when and where the ball went into touch or behind the goal and signaling whether the game is continued by a throw-in, corner kick oder goal kick.
1902 (IFAB) In case of misbehaviour of the linesmen and -women the referee can dismiss them directly from the field and replace him/her by a new one.
1904 (IFAB) Added tasks: Until the introduction of the fourth official in 1991, the linesmen and -women controlled the equipment of the players at the beginning of the game and were generally supposed to support the work of the referee. Their decision can be overruled by the referee.
1938 (IFAB) The home club equips the linesmen and -women with flags (FAW).
1961 (IFAB) Added task: They also indicate when the ball is out of play (FIFA).
1973 (IFAB) Definition of the signals of the referee and his linesmen and -women for corner kick, goal kick, foul, advantage, caution, offside, throw-in and goal (IFAB).
1982 (IFAB) The signing of a substitution is supplemented as a task of the linesmen -women (SFA).
1982 (IFAB) The sign for substitutions is determined (SFA).
1993 (IFAB) Introduction of the fourth official. He or she assist the referee (FIFA).
1994 (IFAB) Neutral linesmen and -women must be appointed for international A-matches (FIFA).
1995 (IFAB) Two years after the introduction of the fourth official, the term „while he has no status“ is deleted from the law (SFA).
1996 (IFAB) Task of the fourth official: After the match, he or she shall submit to the competent authorities a report on any misconduct in other incidents that has occurred from the point of view of the referee, the linesmen/-women and forth official. He must inform the referee and the linesmen of any report (SFA).
1996 (IFAB) The linesmen and -women are renamed as assistant referees.
1999 (IFAB) The fourth official is prescribed for matches in the upper leagues (FIFA, SFA).
2000 (IFAB) Supplementary tasks for assistant referees: They shall also assist the referee a) when an law infringement has been committed in which the assistant referees are closer to the action than the referee and b) when the goalkeeper has moved forward in penalty kicks before kicking the ball and the ball has subsequently crossed the goal line (FIFA).
2002 (DFB) There are now also fourth officials in the Bundesliga.
2006 (IFAB) The team of referees must be from the same country (already decided by UEFA in 1988 for international matches).
2016 (DFB) The IFAB approves a two-year test phase for the so-called video proof. The DFL and the DFB decide early to participate with the Bundesliga in this test (and introduce it in 2018). The video assistant referee checks clearly wrong decisions in goal scoring, red cards, situation in the penalty area and player confusion when cautioned or dismissed. In the season 2016/17 the video assistant referee is tested in the 1st Bundesliga passively, i.e. they decide on the spot, but their decision does not go to the referee.
2017 (DFB) Video assistant referees are used in the 1st Bundesliga as a test.
2018 (IFAB) Video assistant referees are used at the 2018 World Cup and the national associations of the IFAB are free to use them in national competitions.


Proposals for law amendments that were not accepted:

year club/association proposal reaction
1950 FAW Neutral linesmen and -women should always be elected for international matches. withdrawn