Good Administration as a Fundamental Right

Margrét Vala Kristjánsdóttir


The EU Charter of Fundamental Rights lists good administration as a fundamental right. The scope of this right, as defined in Article 41 of the EU Charter, is limited to situations in which persons are dealing with the institutions and bodies of the European Union; this gives it a narrower scope than that of the Charter as a whole. This paper discusses the status of this right as a subjective, fundamental right and a codified principle of EU law. The focus is on the question of applicability of the right to situations in which persons are dealing with the institutions and bodies of Member States and questions are raised regarding the implications of Article 41 in this respect. The paper concludes that Article 41 of the Charter in fact limits the applicability of good administration to the institutions and bodies of the EU. This does not however, preclude the applicability of a general principle of good administration, as established by the European Court of Justice, to Member States and the formal recognition of this principle in the EU Charter seems to affect legal reasoning and contribute to some extent to the protection of administrative rules in the implementation of EU law.


Charter of Fundamental Rights. Article 41; Good Administration; Applicability to Member States; General Principle of Good Administration.


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