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Administrative Law and Policy of the European Union$
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Herwig C.H. Hofmann, Gerard C. Rowe, and Alexander H. Türk

Print publication date: 2011

Print ISBN-13: 9780199286485

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: January 2012

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780199286485.001.0001

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(p.690) 22 Enforcement
Administrative Law and Policy of the European Union

Herwig C.H. Hofmann

Gerard C. Rowe

Alexander H. TÜrk

Oxford University Press

This chapter details the legal framework for measures and methodologies of enforcement. Enforcement is considered essentially as an activity undertaken by the administration. It implies that legal precepts or administrative decisions are carried through to their conclusion, and that behavioural demands imposed on individuals or organizations typically external to the public administration are in fact met. The need for enforcement, seen this way, logically implies that the mere existence of rights and obligations, without measures capable of ensuring that they are realized, would call into question the very purpose of a system under the rule of law. This view reflects, indeed, the often asserted proposition that without sanctions there is, strictly speaking, no system of law. Without needing to subscribe unqualifiedly to that proposition, it is clear that the functionality of a complex and pluralistic system of government based on law, as the EU, would be severely restricted without the capacity for and means of enforcement of rules and decisions.

Keywords:   EU administrative law, administrative action, public administration, sanctions

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