Appealing Decrees and Actions of Public Bodies
Challenging non-normative legal acts, decrees and actions of state bodies
A non-normative act of a state body or a local self-government body, and in cases provided for by law, also a normative act that does not comply with the law or other legal acts and violates the rights and interests of state (municipal) institutions protected by law, may be declared invalid by a court.
In accordance with Part 1 of Article 198 of the Arbitration Procedure Code of the Russian Federation, organizations and other persons have the right to apply to the arbitration court with an application for the recognition of illegal decisions or actions (inaction) of state bodies if they believe that the decision or action (inaction) does not comply with the law or other normative legal act and violates their rights and legitimate interests in the field of entrepreneurial and other economic activities, creates additional obstacles for the implementation of entrepreneurial and other economic activities. Applications for the recognition of non-normative legal acts as invalid, decisions and actions (inaction) as illegal are considered in an arbitration court, if their consideration, in accordance with federal law, is not within the competence of other courts. The said application may be filed with the arbitration court within three months from the date when the institution became aware of the violation of its rights and legitimate interests, unless otherwise provided by federal law. The deadline for filing an application missed for a good reason may be restored by the court.
An application for the recognition of non-normative legal acts as invalid, decisions and actions (omissions) as illegal is submitted to the arbitration court in writing or electronically (by filling out a form posted on the official website of the arbitration court on the Internet) (part 1 of article 125 of the Arbitration Procedure Code of the Russian Federation).
Cases on challenging non-normative legal acts, decisions and actions (inaction) of bodies exercising public powers, officials are considered by a single judge within a period not exceeding three months from the date of receipt of the relevant application by the arbitration court, including the period for preparing the case for trial and accepting decision on the case, unless another period is established by federal law.
Within the framework of various types of legal relations (advertising, state registration of rights to real estate, movement of goods across the Russian border, licensing of certain types of activities, etc.), citizens and legal entities interact with state authorities and local governments.
Such interaction implies legal relations with a person endowed with public authority. As a rule, within the framework of such legal relations, non-normative legal acts are issued by the authorized authority, actions are performed that have an individual focus on a particular person. At the same time, the unequal position of the parties should not affect the maintenance of the optimal balance of public and private interests.
However, often, the authorities make decisions, carry out actions (inaction) that entail a violation of the rights of citizens and legal entities. Such cases give rise to disputes related to challenging non-normative legal acts, decisions and actions (inaction) of federal state bodies. Citizens and organizations have the right to go to court to protect their rights.
In some cases, decrees of certain authorities can be appealed in an administrative manner by filing a complaint with a higher authority (for example, decisions of tax and customs authorities, decisions and instructions of the FAS Russia).
Cases on contesting in court illegal non-normative legal acts, resolutions and actions (inaction) of federal state bodies are subject to appeal in the order of Chapter 25 of the Code of Civil Procedure of the Russian Federation (on applications from individuals) and Chapter 24 of the Arbitration Procedure Code of the Russian Federation (on disputes involving individual entrepreneurs and legal entities).
In an application for contesting a non-normative legal act, decisions and actions (inaction) of state bodies, planned to be filed with the court, the name of the state body that adopted the contested non-normative legal act, committed the disputed actions (omission) must be indicated; name, number, date of adoption of the challenged act, decision, time of the action; the rights and legitimate interests of the applicant, which, in his opinion, are violated by the contested act, decision, action (inaction).
Before going to court, it is extremely important to make a detailed analysis of the judicial prospects for appealing against a non-normative legal act, decisions and actions (inaction) of a federal state body.