Silence is Golden? Tacit authorizations in the Netherlands, Germany and France

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Article 13(4) of the Services Directive provides that subject to certain conditions, member states have an obligation to introduce a system whereby tacit authorization is granted if an application is not processed within the set time limit. This article discusses the implications of this provision for national administrative law in the Netherlands, Germany and France. How have the national lawmakers dealt with this European obligation? The study in this contribution examines the extent to which these countries have opted to make exceptions for national authorization schemes to the basic European rule that tacit authorization will be granted if a decision is not made on time. Overriding reasons relating to the public interest, including the legitimate interests of third parties, play a major role. There is a particular focus on the way the various member states have determined when and on what conditions tacit authorization can be granted, how the administrative authority in question can protect the public interests involved after such a tacit authorization is deemed granted and how any third parties involved can seek legal protection against the tacit authorization.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)7-34
Number of pages28
JournalReview of European Administrative Law
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - 2013


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