The Federal Fiscal Court, based in Munich, is the highest court for tax and customs matters.

There has been a dispute for months over the appointment of a new head of the Federal Fiscal Court. Now a court has stopped the new vice president.

Munich – In the dispute over the appointment of a new head of the highest German tax court, a court has stopped the appeal of the candidate selected by the Federal Ministry of Finance. That Munich Administrative Court gave three urgent requests by unsuccessful applicants against the new Vice President Anke Morsch (52) on Thursday.

The Federal Fiscal Court, based in Munich, is the highest court for tax and customs matters. © Federal Fiscal Court

The federal government may not fill the position with the “intended applicant” until a new selection decision has been made. The court announced this on Thursday in Munich, without naming Morsch.

The appeal was therefore unlawful, but the decision is not final. Both the federal government and Morsch itself can lodge a complaint with the Bavarian Administrative Court within two weeks.

The reason for the decision: The former SPD state secretary for justice in Saarland is currently the president of the local tax court and her civil service status is classified lower than the three unsuccessful applicants. These are already the current chairmen of the Senate at the Federal Fiscal Court.

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Therefore, according to the court, the Federal Ministry of Finance should not have classified Morsch as the “best performing applicant”, at least not without detailed reasons.

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The presidential chair in the Bundesfinanzhof in Munich has been orphaned for a year. © Peter Kneffel / dpa

The Federal Fiscal Court has been without a leader since last year because the outgoing grand coalition had not arranged the succession of the President and Vice President in good time. The presidents of the federal courts, the German Association of Judges and the Judges’ Association at the Federal Fiscal Court had sharply criticized the procedure in some cases.

The issue here is whether the ministry is hoisting politically acceptable candidates for leadership positions who do not technically meet the requirements.

The selection criteria actually stipulate that applicants for management positions at the federal courts should generally have five years of experience at the respective court. But neither Morsch nor the civil servant appointed as the future BFH President meet this criterion.

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According to the decision of the administrative court, this question was not relevant to the decision. While Morsch used to sit in Saarland for the SPD in the state government, Thesling is considered to be close to the CDU.

The case was not about the presidential post, but Thesling has not yet been introduced to his office either.

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