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Please use this identifier to cite or link to this item: http://hdl.handle.net/1807/24813

Title: Administrative Law and Curial Deference
Authors: Lewans, Matthew
Advisor: Dyzenhaus, David
Department: Law
Keywords: administrative law
judicial review
Issue Date: 30-Aug-2010
Abstract: This thesis examines three interrelated issues. The first concerns a question about the status of administrative law, namely whether administrative officials have authority to determine what the law requires under a democratic constitution. Historically, this question has not been adequately addressed in public law scholarship because neither Diceyan constitutional theory nor common law doctrine has been traditionally receptive to administrative law. In this thesis, I argue that there are good reasons for people to respect the legal authority of administrative officials and their decisions. Those reasons are rooted in respect for the democratic process by which administrative officials are empowered, and respect for the various forms of expertise that administrative officials possess. The second issue concerns the doctrinal aspect of administrative law. If there are good reasons for believing that administrative officials have legitimate legal authority, then those same reasons suggest that judges should respect administrative legal decisions. In order to better understand how the relevant reasons for respecting administrative decisions alter the practice of judicial review, I compare and contrast the traditional doctrine of jurisdictional review with the doctrine of curial deference. This comparison shows that the doctrine of curial deference provides a superior account of the legitimate legal authority of administrative officials, and that this account makes a practical difference for the practice of judicial review. The third issue concerns whether the doctrine of curial deference can be reconciled with the rule of law. Assuming that there are good reasons for respecting administrative decisions, how can judges both respect an administrative decision while ensuring that it is consistent with the rule of law? I argue that judges can both respect administrative decisions and maintain the rule of law by requiring administrative officials to justify their decisions adequately in light of public reasons which are both patent and latent in existing legal materials.
URI: http://hdl.handle.net/1807/24813
Appears in Collections:Doctoral
Faculty of Law - Doctoral theses

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