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Rechtsweg bei Lieferungs- und Leistungsverträgen zwischen Beschaffungsbehörden und ihren Bedarfsträgern

Thomas Elbel
Zeitschrift für öffentliche und gemeinwirtschaftliche Unternehmen: ZögU / Journal for Public and Nonprofit Services
33. Jahrg., H. 1 (2010), pp. 13-30
Stable URL: http://www.jstor.org/stable/20764819
Page Count: 18
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Rechtsweg bei Lieferungs- und Leistungsverträgen zwischen Beschaffungsbehörden und ihren Bedarfsträgern
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Abstract

Der Artikel untersucht die Frage, ob hinsichtlich der Entscheidung in Streitigkeiten über eine Vereinbarung, die eine rechtlich verselbstständigte Beschaffungsbehörde mit einer Bedarfsträgerin zum Zwecke der Beschaffung von Lieferungen und Leistungen schließt, der Verwaltungs- oder der Zivilrechtsweg eröffnet ist, sofern diese Vereinbarung zivilrechtliche Elemente aufweist und ihr Abschluss nicht unmittelbar auf der Grundlage einer öffentlich-rechtlichen Norm erfolgt. In the conventional setup of a German government agency the function of procurement was usually carried out by the legal entity requiring the services or goods to be procured. The implementation of a public reform concept called the "Neues Steuerungsmodell" (New Governance Model) by a majority of German municipal administrations changed this situation in three distinctive steps. Its adaptation of private sector business methodologies first leads to a centralization of the function of procurement then followed by the budgetary and ultimately the legal spin-off of the procuring entity. The independent public procurement agencies resulting from this process would lean on civil contract law principles when formally redesigning the legal relations with their public customer entities. This article seeks to answer the question of proper legal recourse with regard to disputes arising from such "inter-agency procurement contracts". Whilst the public nature of the government tasks provided for by the act of procurement and of the entities involved seems to indicate the administrative courts' jurisdiction, the use of civil law contract principles on the other hand rather suggests jurisdiction of the ordinary courts of law. Based on the major theories on distinction of civil law contracts from their public law counterparts a procurement contract entered into by two public entities is public in nature only if it complies with the following three requirements: (i) The ultimate purpose of the contract is the discharge of a governmental task. (ii) One of the parties is a government agency responsible for the discharge of such task and it is entering into the contract on the basis of this capacity. (iii) The other party belongs to the group of addressees of the governmental task and has been chosen by the obliged party on the basis of this capacity. With respect to the issue at hand it can then be stated that the application of this rule to "inter-agency procurement contracts" clearly reveals their civil nature, since the demanding agency may in most cases legitimately satisfy its demand by contracting private entities hence not fulfilling the third of the above requirements. Moreover the fact that the procurement agencies' incorporation statutes typically provide for the obligation to adhere to the principals of commercial business additionally underscores this result.

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