Administrative court code

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Basic data
Title: Administrative court code
Abbreviation: VwGO
Type: Federal law
Scope: Federal Republic of Germany
Legal matter: Administration of justice , administrative procedural law
References : 340-1
Original version from: January 21, 1960
( Federal Law Gazette I p. 17 )
Entry into force on: April 1, 1960
New announcement from: March 19, 1991
( BGBl. I p. 686 )
Last change by: Art. 181 Regulation of June 19, 2020
( Federal Law Gazette I p. 1328, 1349 )
Effective date of the
last change:
June 27, 2020
(Art. 361 of June 19, 2020)
Please note the note on the applicable legal version.

The Administrative Court Code , or VwGO for short , is a German federal law which regulates court proceedings in German administrative jurisdiction ( administrative procedural law ) on a nationwide basis.

The VwGO is divided into the parts

  • Judicial system (I.),
  • Procedure (II.),
  • Appeal and retrial (III.)
  • Costs and enforcement (IV.),
  • Final and transitional provisions (V).

All federal states have passed their own implementing laws for the VwGO in exercising their competing legislative competence .

The sixth law amending the administrative court order of November 1, 1996, which was promulgated in the Federal Law Gazette on November 7, 1996 and came into force on January 1, 1997, contains restrictions on legal protection under administrative courts. With this change in the law was the general appeal against first instance judgment excluded and the admission appeal introduced. Since then, there has only been an appeal procedure if the Higher Administrative Court has approved the appeal at the request of one of the parties involved. As soon as the application to be decided in the written procedure without an oral hearing is rejected, the judgment in the first instance becomes final .

In addition, the previously non-existent compulsory representation before the higher administrative courts was introduced at the same time . Before that, everyone involved could turn to the Higher Administrative Court without legal assistance. The application for admission of the appeal must now be submitted by a lawyer or a person of equal status (see Section 67 (4) sentence 2 VwGO).

Substance has the federal government the draft law amending the Code of Administrative Procedure with regard to the asylum issue , which have increased sustained by a high number of asylum procedures, the process time. The restriction of the administrative court procedure should accelerate the procedure to secure the "legal protection guarantee".

With effect from January 1, 2002, the administrative courts were given the opportunity to allow the appeal in the first instance judgment themselves ( Section 124 (1) VwGO). The higher administrative court must then conduct a normal appeal procedure. However, this is rarely used in practice.


Legal precursors were various state laws from the period after the Second World War , after the Allied Control Council with Control Council Act No. 36 of October 31, 1946, the administrative courts in the individual occupation zones and in Berlin had been re-established.

The main parts of the administrative court order are based on the so-called Heidelberg draft by Walter Jellinek , who, as chairman of a committee founded at the suggestion of the US military government , submitted the draft of an administrative court law.

There have been no administrative courts in the GDR since 1952. Instead, the law on processing citizens' submissions provided for informal conflict resolution.


Web links

Individual evidence

  1. cf. Draft of an administrative court order (VwGO) BT-Drs. III / 55 of December 5, 1957, p. 24 f.
  2. Klaus Grupp, Ulrich Stelkens : Implementing Laws for the Administrative Court Regulations Link Collection, accessed on February 19, 2019
  3. BVerfG, decision of May 9, 1973 - 2 BvL 43, 44/71
  4. BT-Drs. 13/3993 , p. 1, PDF doc. 1.41 MB, accessed December 17, 2012.
  5. cf. the list in Section 195 (1) No. 3–6 VwGO in the version of April 1, 1960, Federal Law Gazette I p. 17
  6. Control Council Act No. 36 Administrative Courts of October 31, 1946, accessed on February 20, 2019
  7. cf. Walter Jellinek, Richard Naumann : The administrative jurisdiction: In what way is it advisable to standardize the legislation on administrative jurisdiction? Negotiations of the German Juristentag , Tübingen: Mohr (Siebeck) 1951