Success in an administrative court case concerning the dismissal of a Director of the SPZOZ (Independent Public Healthcare Facility)

Success in an administrative court case concerning the dismissal of a Director of the SPZOZ (Independent Public Healthcare Facility)

In the judgment of 3 November 2021, the Voivodship Administrative Court in Poznań dismissed the complaint of the dismissed acting SPZOZ Director against the resolution of the District Board (the body creating the SPZOZ) on his dismissal.

In this case, the Law Firm represented the District Board, preparing an answer to the complaint and demanding the dismissal of the complaint as completely unfounded. The argumentation put forward, pointing to the correctness of the appeal procedure, turned out to be fully effective. The VAC in Poznań shared all the arguments presented by the Law Firm:

  1. In cases involving dismissal, the taking of evidence at the judicial stage is exceptional and merely supplementary. The VAC could not therefore take evidence from a number of documents submitted by the appellant after his dismissal.

2) Adoption of a resolution by the district board on the dismissal of the director of the SPZOZ undoubtedly constitutes issuance of an act in a public administration case by the executive body of the territorial self-government on health care.

3) Appointment and dismissal to the post of the director of the SPZOZ arises from the same legal basis, and the powers of the district authority in this respect cannot be doubted.

4) The VAC examines the compliance with the requirements provided for in the public law provisions for the act of dismissal (discharge) of the director of a local government unit as a form of implementation of public tasks of the district, and thus an act of public law character.

5) When reviewing the legality of the appealed resolution, the administrative court examines whether the body did not exceed the boundaries of its administrative authority and whether the exercise of that authority was not arbitrary. In particular, whether the resolution satisfies formal conditions, i.e., whether it was passed by a competent body in the required form and manner and whether it contains the required content, without a substantive assessment of that content.

6) Provisions of the Self-Government Act do not contain any substantive norm of administrative law defining the premises for dismissal of managers of such organisational units. In view of this, dismissal from the post of the director of the SPZOZ has the character of a discretionary power of the authority, connected with the performance of public tasks in the field of employment and dismissal of managers of organisational units of the district.

7) There are no regulations providing for a hearing prior to the dismissal of an employee employed under an appointment.

8) Neither the provisions of the Act on District Government nor the Act on Medical Activity provide for the necessity to conduct a formalised inquiry before issuing an act on the dismissal of a director.

The (non-final) judgement will certainly have an impact on other cases concerning the competencies of self-government bodies to appoint and dismiss the units they create. The issues concerning the public-private effects of revoking resolutions have been ambiguous so far.

On behalf of the Firm, the case was handled by barrister Aneta Fornalik.

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