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A Theory of Legitimate Expectations for Public Administration$
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Alexander Brown

Print publication date: 2017

Print ISBN-13: 9780198812753

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: January 2018

DOI: 10.1093/oso/9780198812753.001.0001

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On the Legitimacy of Expectations

On the Legitimacy of Expectations

(p.53) 2 On the Legitimacy of Expectations
A Theory of Legitimate Expectations for Public Administration

Alexander Brown

Oxford University Press

Section I identifies the weaknesses in existing accounts which locate the legitimacy of expectations in underpinning laws and legal entitlements (the Law-Based Account), in the substantive justice of expectations and/or the justice of the basic structure which forms the background to expectations (the Justice-Based Account), or in the legitimacy of the governing agencies and political authorities whose acts and omissions are both the cause and the subject of expectations (the Legitimate Authority-Based Account). Section II introduces a rival account, the Responsibility-Based Account, according to which the legitimacy of expectations depends on the responsibility of governmental administrative agencies for bringing about agent’s expectations, allied to those agencies already having been given or having assumed a role responsibility for making binding decisions affecting the important interests of agents. Finally, Section III expounds in more detail the complex theory of responsibility that undergirds the Responsibility-Based Account.

Keywords:   legitimate expectations, legal entitlements, justice, legitimate authority, responsibility, causation, negligence, intention

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