Administrative Court (Germany)

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The administrative court in Germany is usually the first -instance court of administrative justice . The establishment is subject to state legislation. In the administrative court proceedings are u. a. To persons under private law (e.g. natural persons and companies) and partnerships and partnerships under public law ( regional and personal corporations ). The legal basis for proceedings before the administrative courts is the Administrative Court Code (VwGO). The administrative court is in accordance with the principle of the official investigation according to § 86 Para. 1 VwGO obliged.


In simple terms, the administrative court is responsible when decisions by authorities are to be overturned or authorities are to be obliged to do a certain thing. However, this does not apply to certain disputes arising from social law (e.g. with the Federal Employment Agency , with the authorities of the social pension insurance or disputes over most other social benefits ), here the jurisdiction of the social courts is predominantly given (this has been in force since 2005 also for questions of social welfare for which the administrative courts were previously responsible). The jurisdiction is also not given in disputes about taxes (e.g. taxes , customs duties ) that are levied by government agencies (not the municipalities and cities), here the tax courts are responsible. The administrative court is therefore also referred to as a "general" administrative court, while the social and financial court are each referred to as a "special" administrative court.

As a matter of fact, the administrative court is generally responsible as the court of entry. As an exception, the Higher Administrative Court ( referred to as the Administrative Court in the federal states of Bavaria , Baden-Württemberg and Hesse ) or the Federal Administrative Court may have jurisdiction in the first instance (material jurisdiction).

The local jurisdiction of the administrative courts results from § 52 VwGO. The rule of thumb is that the seat of the defendant authority is decisive.


The administrative bodies of the administrative courts are usually chambers made up of three professional judges (for decisions after an oral hearing: two additional honorary judges). If all parties agree, the respective rapporteur can decide instead of the chamber. For several years now, the chamber has been supposed to transfer the legal dispute to one of its members, mostly the reporter, for sole negotiation and decision (single judge). This option is predominantly used, so that chamber decisions have now become the exception.

So- called specialist chambers are formed at the administrative courts for staff representation matters under state or federal law . These act in the form of a professional judge and four honorary judges (cf. Art. 83 Para. 3 BayPVG and Art. 84 Para. 3 BPersVG).

Legal move

The appeal against the judgments of the administrative court is the application for admission of the appeal , on which the higher administrative court decides. If it rejects the application or rejects it, the first instance judgment is final. If the application is accepted, the admission procedure will be continued as an appointment procedure. The administrative court can also allow the appeal itself. Furthermore, a leap revision is possible against the judgment of the administrative court if both plaintiff and defendant agree and the administrative court allows them; Such a step revision leads the procedure directly to the Federal Administrative Court.

Against other decisions of the Administrative Court, which no judgments (for example, interim measures as decisions in summary proceedings), there is the appeal of the complaint . These legal remedies are decided by the Higher Administrative Court.

A special legal remedy available in all instances is the hearing complaint , which can be used to complain about a violation of the right to be heard if there is no legal remedy or other legal remedy against the court decision.

See also