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Appeal before the administrative judge

Verified 21 April 2020 - Directorate of Legal and Administrative Information (Prime Minister), Ministry of Justice

Proceedings before administrative courts

Published on 19 November 2020

From 20 November 2020, the administrative courts may amend the rules of procedure applicable to the cases they are handling, in order to allow them to continue their activities during the state of health emergency. Changes may include:

  • Possibility for courts to communicate with parties by any means
  • Conduct of the hearing by audiovisual means of telecommunication or by electronic means
  • Possibility for judges to participate in the hearing remotely
  • Use of the procedure without an interim hearing
  • Recourse to proceedings without hearing in certain cases in disputes relating to the right to lodging
  • Exemption from reading of urgent decisions in the case of expulsion of aliens

These possibilities for amending the rules of procedure are provided for in Order No. 2020-1402 of 18 November 2020 and decree n°2020-1406 of 18 november 2020 .. They will cease on the day of the end of the state of health emergency, that is, February 16, 2021.

To refer the matter to the administrative judge, you must act within the time limit and file the appeal with the competent court. You do not have to take a lawyer unless the dispute is about a sum of money or a contract with a public authority or agency. You must attach to your application the administrative decision you are challenging, as well as all supporting documents.

You can apply to the administrative court when you have a dispute with the administration. But your appeal will only be examined if the conditions for referral to the administrative court are filled. The case must fall within the jurisdiction of the administrative justice system and there must be no obligation to file an administrative appeal beforehand.

If these conditions are met, you can file your appeal within the time limits: the date on which the court registers the application is taken into account (not the date of sending). However, if the decision you are challenging does not mention the time limits for appeal, you cannot be accused of acting outside the time limit. Finally, you must attach to the appeal a copy of the decision of the administration you are challenging.

The rules vary depending on whether the appeal is to be filed before the administrative court or a specialized court.

General case

The competent administrative tribunal shall be the one in the jurisdiction (territory) in which the administration which took the contested decision is situated.

Who shall I contact

However, the jurisdiction of the competent administrative court is different in the following cases:

Tableau - Court competent in the case

Dispute Subject

Place of competent court

Property (land consolidation, town planning, expropriation, building permits, etc.)

Court where the property is located

Administrative policing measure (e.g., operating license)

Court where you reside on the date of the measure

Professional activity

Court where the activity in dispute is located

Public contract or administrative contract

Court where the contract is performed

Staff pension

The court in which the public person to whom you report at the time of your retirement is located

Civil service labor conflict

Court where you are assigned at the date of the contested decision (where the author of the decision is if it concerns several agents)


Court where the act which caused the damage occurred

Recognition of certain qualities (e.g., veteran status)

Court where you reside

Specific disputes (decrees, visas, military pensions, etc.)

In some cases, the competent court is either a specific administrative court or another specialized court.

Tableau - Competent administrative court according to the nature of the dispute

Dispute type

Competent court

Minister's order and regulation

Council of State

Decision of a national administrative authority (Cnil: titleContent for example

Council of State

Regional and European elections

Council of State

Deliberation of an Overseas Departmental or Regional Council or Overseas Community

Council of State

Visa for entry into France

Nantes Administrative Court


Nantes Administrative Court

Disputes before several administrative tribunals

Administrative Tribunal of Paris

Disputes not under any identifiable administrative tribunal

Administrative Tribunal of Paris

Social welfare

Departmental or Central Social Assistance Commission

Military invalidity pension

Departmental Court of Military Invalidity Pensions and War Victims

Granting of refugee status

National Court of the Right to Asylum

Compensation for returnees

Commission on the Litigation of Compensation for Overseas Returnees

Who shall I contact
Who shall I contact


disputes with social security are not the responsibility of the administrative judge and are tried by specific instances..

Administrative Tribunal

The use of a lawyer is mandatory if a sum of money or a contract is involved.

However, representation by a lawyer is not not required for the following disputes:

  • Contraventions on the road (for example, unauthorized installation of parasols on the beach)
  • Direct contributions, turnover taxes and similar taxes
  • Individual decisions concerning public officials
  • Pensions, benefits, allowances or rights granted for social assistance, housing or for workers deprived of employment, reserved employment and compensation for returnees
  • Decisions of a territorial authority or public institution under
  • Application for enforcement of a final judgment

To finance the lawyer's fees, you can apply to benefit from legal aid..

Who shall I contact
Council of State

The use of a lawyer in the Council of State is compulsory except in the following cases ::

General case

You can submit your request via the remote service Remedies citizens.

Citizen's Remedies (appeal to the administrative judge)

The query may also be filed with or addressed to transplant by courier preferably with RAR: titleContent..

Specific courts (CCAS, CNDA, National Court of Asylum, etc.)

The query may be filed or addressed to the transplant by courier preferably with RAR: titleContent..

Please note

if you are represented by a lawyer, they must use the application Remedies to submit your query.

Electronic folder

If the appeal is filed via the Telemedicine Citizen Remedies service, consult the brochure explaining the procedure to be followed and the documents to be provided ..

Citizen's Remedies (appeal to the administrative judge)

Paper Folder

Your file must contain the following documents and copies:

Tableau - Folder Composition

Folder Parts

Number of copies


1 copy

Decision under appeal or a copy of the request addressed to the administration with the acknowledgement of receipt when the administration has failed to reply (implied decision)

1 copy

All relevant supporting documents to be produced unless their number, volume or characteristics prevent such production

1 copy

Detailed inventory of supporting documents

In the event that the law provides that the judge shall decide without submitting certain documents for debate: memory  explaining the reasons for refusing to transmit to the other parties

The submission shall be forwarded to the other parties

Where the refusal to provide documents is the subject of the dispute: separate statement explaining the reasons for transmission to other parties

The submission shall be forwarded to the other parties

The request is written in French on free paper. It can be handwritten (perfectly readable) or, preferably, typed.

The query must include the following information:

  • Name, signature and address of parties
  • Statement of facts
  • Statement of pleas (legal arguments). You must show that the act under attack is illegal.
  • Statement of findings (what you ask the judge). For example, annulment of the contested decision, award of damages, etc. In the case of a claim for compensation, the amount must be precise and detailed.

If you dispute several decisions, you must file a motion by deed.

If more than one person makes the same application without a lawyer, they must appoint a single representative. Otherwise, the court shall address the first named person.

In the State Council, if it is impossible to provide a copy of the attachments because of their number, volume or characteristics, the attachments shall be communicated to the Dispute Secretariat or the Prefecture.


the notification the lodging of the application to the author of the decision and to the holder of the authorization shall be compulsory for the following remedies: planning certificate, decision not to oppose prior declaration provided for in the planning code, permit to build, develop or demolish.. Notification must be made within 15 free days following the filing of the application by registered letter with AR: titleContent

The fact of bringing the matter before the administrative court does not prevent the contested decision from having effect.

To avoid serious, irreversible or irreparable effects, you can ask the judge to take a precautionary interim measure as a matter of urgency, through a referral procedure..