Specifics of local administration and their fines

Although we are calling our country “democratic” and we’re pointing the improvements achieved during the last 2 decades of the development of Bulgaria, from legal point of view there is something archaic which the rulers of the country never developed: the administrative system and the huge number of personnel within this governmental system. The model which recently works here, shows several major shortcomings, which exclude motivation of the administrative employees to do their job better – which means in service of the people and the country. Here are several examples:




1) A governmental employee charges you on behalf of the Authority they are working for, with a fine (ticket) for the lack of performance of legal obligation, which fact they have noted. Later you appeal within the legal deadlines this fine in court, where you pay court tax and legal fee, and the court revokes the fine. But since you can’t claim your expenses in the same administrative lawsuit, they you need to initiated a claim action (where to pay another expenses) against the Administrative Authority for compensation for the expenses you’ve previously made for protecting your own rights against the fine. So you end up with winning two cases and obliging the Authority to pay you money from their budget, while their employee has not been affected for his/her own incompetency. Of course there is no statistic data about how much money has been paid annually by the Governmental bodies for compensation about court expenses in revoking their tickets, fines and other punishments.

2) A police officer charges you with a fine. Later you appeal against it, and the same scenario if you win your lawsuit – you have to start new one for covering your own expenses made for appealing the fine. At the end of the day the Ministry of Internal Affairs pays you compensation, and the police officer who has issued the ticket, receives no punishment for it.

3) Another great shortcoming in the Law is the so-called “contentious proceedings”, part of which are the appeals against refusals, issued by the Companies House. The applicant (being a corporate entity) appeals the refusal in court, and pays both court tax and lawyer’s fee for it. But even if they won the case, the Law says that all the expenses made for the appeal, are for their own account. While the employee of the Companies House, who has issued the refusal, holds no liability and receives no punishment for putting the applicant in such inconvenient situation.

All the three examples above show the reason why the administrative personnel has no motivation to perform their own job well and represent one of the reasons why the courts are overloaded with lawsuits. If there was a burden of firing an employee who issues a number of punishments, later annulled by the court, then such legal instrument could prevent the administrative system from incompetency and corruption. But on one side, the recent politicians who rule the country have no motivation to create it, because it could reduce the administration (i.e. throwing personnel on the street), and on other side, considering the demographic catastrophe which Bulgarians are experiencing, and the emigration towards the developed western countries, there won’t be enough people to take the released job positions. In addition, the administrative personnel would not support such legal change as well, because it would directly affect their job seats.




I hope things will get better in the future, where with a legal instrument the governmental employee could work better and could resp. reduce the expenses of the National budget, paid for compensation for annulled fines/tickets. But unfortunately I am not so optimistic about its fast jumps forward.

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