Review Procedure

Table of contents

As a rule, the review procedure only applies to awards that reach or exceed the threshold value for an EU-wide tender (Section 106 GWB [Act against Restraints of Competition] or if this is stipulated in the Land procurement laws (e.g. Tariftreue- und Vergabegesetz Sachsen-Anhalt - TVergG LSA). The review procedure takes place before the public procurement chambers of the Länder or the Federal Government.

The review procedure is regulated in §§ 155 ff. GWB.
Any company is entitled to file an application if it:

  • has an interest in the public contract or concession and
  • asserts a violation of its rights pursuant to Section 97 (6) GWB through non-observance of the award principles and
  • has suffered or is likely to suffer damage (as a result of the non-observance of the award principles).


The company must have previously complained to the contracting authority about the award violation within the specified period (obligation to complain), Section 160 (3) ARC. An exception to this is if the invalidity of the contract is to be determined pursuant to Section 135 GWB.
The application for review must be made in writing and must be substantiated without delay.

The public procurement tribunals investigate the facts of the case ex officio. In a first step, they examine whether the application for review is obviously inadmissible or unfounded. If this is the case, the application for review is rejected. If this is not the case, the request for review is forwarded to the contracting authority and the contract award file is requested from it.

The decision of the Public Procurement Tribunal is generally based on an oral hearing; however, it can also be decided on the basis of the file.
In principle, the acceleration requirement must be observed. Upon receipt of the request, the Public Procurement Tribunal shall render its decision within 5 weeks. Under special circumstances, this period may be extended by a further 2 weeks.

If the application for review is well-founded, the Procurement Chamber shall take appropriate measures to remedy the infringement. If the application for review is unfounded, it shall be rejected.

An immediate appeal against the decision of the Public Procurement Tribunal is admissible.

Did you know?

The review procedure in public procurement law is a procedure used to review the decisions of contracting authorities and to ensure that they comply with the legal requirements. Bidders can request a review procedure if they believe that their rights have been violated in the award procedure.

Here are some common mistakes that can be made by both contracting authorities and bidders and how to avoid them:

  1. Failure to respect deadlines: in a review procedure, there are tight deadlines that must be respected. If these deadlines are not respected, the review procedure may be inadmissible. Avoidance: Make sure you know and respect the relevant deadlines. This applies both to the contracting authority, which must respond to the review procedure, and to the bidder who initiates the review procedure.
  2. Insufficient documentation: The decisions of the awarding authority must be well documented in order to be able to be reviewed in a review procedure. If the documentation is insufficient, this can complicate the review and increase the risk of legal problems. Avoidance: Document all decisions in the procurement process carefully. This will be helpful in the event of a review procedure.
  3. Mistakes in the grounds for the request for review: When a bidder initiates a review procedure, it must give precise reasons why it believes its rights have been violated. Unclear or insufficient reasons can lead to the review procedure being inadmissible or unsuccessful. Avoidance: Make sure that your request for review is clearly and extensively reasoned. It should explain exactly why you think your rights have been infringed and include all relevant evidence.
  4. Failure to follow the rules on the review procedure: The review procedure is a formal procedure that follows certain rules. If these rules are not followed, the review procedure may be inadmissible. Avoidance: Make sure you know and follow the rules for the review procedure. This applies to both the contracting authority and the tenderer.


By being aware of these common mistakes and taking steps to avoid them, both contracting authorities and bidders can help ensure that the review procedure is effective and fair and that the rights of all parties are protected.



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