Preliminary financial management

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In the context of state finances, provisional budget management (or emergency budget management ) refers to the continuation of state activities without a valid budget law ( federal and state ) or without a valid budget statute ( municipalities ).

Principle of budget sovereignty

In parliamentary democracies generally have parliaments , the budget authority , that is the right to government spending and receipts set. They alone have the right to decide which burdens the state imposes its citizens and how he occupied with so means wirtschaftet . The legislator makes the corresponding stipulations in the budget law, which usually applies for one year.

If the principle of budget sovereignty of parliament is followed without restrictions, the state would have to cease its activities completely if no new one came into force after the expiry of the period of application of the old budget law. No wages and salaries should be paid and no liabilities should be settled. In addition, the state should not enter into any new payment obligations. He would have to take leave of his employees and close all public facilities .

The provisional budget rules are there to avoid the collapse of the state that goes with it.

Regulations in individual countries


In the Federal Republic of Germany , both the Federation and the Länder have quite broad regulations in favor of the executive. For the federal government, Article 111 of the Basic Law provides for the right to provisional budgetary management if the federal budget is adopted late. The federal government can spend and take out loans to a limited extent. This only applies to expenses "that are necessary

  1. in order to maintain legally existing facilities and to carry out legally agreed measures,
  2. to fulfill the legally justified obligations of the federal government,
  3. to continue construction, procurements and other services or to continue to grant subsidies for these purposes, provided that amounts have already been approved by the budget of a previous year. "

The provisional budget management at the federal level is carried out by the Federal Minister of Finance authorizing the specialist departments by administrative regulation to manage the expenditure approaches of the budget that has not yet been approved up to a certain percentage ( Section 5 BHO ).

In the German municipalities ( districts and municipalities ) the provisional budget management is regulated by largely identical provisions in the municipal ordinances. According to this, as long as the budget for the respective budget year is not in force, the municipalities are allowed to make expenditures to which they are legally obliged or with which ongoing projects are continued, to reschedule loans and to take out new loans to a limited extent. New projects may not be started and new jobs may not be created.


In the Republic of Austria , Article 51, Paragraph 5 of the Federal Constitution regulates the provisional budget management: State expenditure " is,

  1. if the federal government has submitted the draft of a federal finance law, to perform in accordance with this draft until a statutory regulation comes into force, but no longer than during the first four months of the following financial year;
  2. if the federal government has not submitted a draft of a federal finance law or if, in the case of item 1, the first four months of the following financial year have expired, to make payments according to the expenditure estimates contained in the last federal finance law. "

United States

The United States only allows absolutely unavoidable federal spending with no valid budget. In the event of a budget conflict, the majority of the federal authorities there will therefore be closed ( government shutdown ).

See also

Individual evidence

  1. Bodo Leibinger / Reinhard Müller / Herbert Wiesner, Public Finance , 2014, p. 109
  2. For more details see: Provisional budget management in the municipal wiki with further sources