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Limits of administrative recognition in matters of social assistance : case study


Matan, Andrzej



Subject and Keywords:

administrative decision   administrative discretion   limits of discretion   decision selection directives


Decisions taken in the area of social assistance are usually related acts which is a significant restriction of authorities’ freedom in creating their content. It is true that we deal with discretionary acts rela tively rarely in this area but the problem related to the situation of the individual (applying for a benefit) is no less serious. In particular, the question arises whether the body acting within the scope of discretion can freely shape the content of the decision. In a democratic state ruled by law, these restrictions should be seen mainly in the sphere of axiology, i.e. the values underlying legal regulations that provide for the possibility of shaping the legal situation of a citizen by means of discretionary acts. These values can be used to define internal and external limits for discretion. “Internal” limits of administrative discretion are certain values, collectively referred to as publicinterest, which the authority should follow. These values should constitute the basis (material) forsetting directives for the selection of legal consequences, which are to be followed by the authoritymaking the discretionary act. On the other hand, “external” limits result from purposes for which the legislature provides the authority with the possibility of discretionary action. These goals usually result directly from the Act, whose regulations are a substantive legal norm containing the authorization to use discretion, but also from the norms contained in other legal acts. Sometimes they need to be sought outside the text of the act, e.g. from legislative materials. However, we must always assume that the legislator, using the structure of discretion, does so for certain rational reasons. The “external” limits of administrative discretion, understood as its goals, will also form the basis for formulating directives for the selection of legal consequences, which in the context of the assumptions adopted above approving the design of “legality of the goal”, will be binding on the administrative body making a discretionary decision.

Place of publishing:



E-Wydawnictwo. Prawnicza i Ekonomiczna Biblioteka Cyfrowa. Wydział Prawa, Administracji i Ekonomii Uniwersytetu Wrocławskiego


Górnicki, Leonard. Red.

Date issued:


Detailed Type:



ISSN 2450-3932




pol   eng

WUL Catalog:

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Is referenced by:



Folia Iuridica Wratislaviensis

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Copyright by Wydział Prawa, Administracji i Ekonomii Uniwersytetu Wrocławskiego

Location of original object:

Library of the Faculty of Law, Administration and Economics

Autor opisu:

WR U/PAdjm   TK