On February 3, 2016, the President of the Republic of Azerbaijan signed a Decree which established the Appeals Council (the "Decree").
The Appeals Council must consider complaints of individuals and legal entities from decisions, actions and inactions of appeals councils of central and local executive authorities concerning their business activity. The chairman and 8 members of the Council are appointed by the President among the representatives of the Presidential Administration and central executive authorities.
The Council will consider complaints in hearings which should be held not less than twice a month. Along with the Council members, complainants may also attend the hearings. The Council can satisfy complaints entirely or partially, reject them or issue new decisions.
Interestingly, the government will also establish appeals councils within central and executive authorities.
However, it is unclear how the Decree will operate within the current legislation. Thus, certain amendments to the Law On Administrative Proceedings and the Code of Administrative Procedures should be made to ensure a smooth implementation of the Decree. For example, the Decree is silent on whether complainants may simultaneously apply to the courts and appeals councils. Although the Decree is silent on whether applying to appeals councils is mandatory following a court appeal, we believe this issue will be at complainants' sole discretion.
The President has already appointed the Council members. The chairman of the Council is the head of the state control division of the Presidential Administration.