Référé judge in France: the special role of an emergency judge in a crisis

Crisis situations reveal the resistance mechanisms of the rule of law. In France, in the face of a high concentration of powers in the hands of the executive, judicial review plays an important role. There are two procedures that allow judicial review of both legislative and regulatory measures in an emergency: a priori constitutional review and administrative référé procedure. During the health crisis, the emergency administrative judge played more than ever a role of filter between citizens and political authorities by developing a discourse in response to the crisis. In great demand, the référé judge tried to find a way between his desire
not to judge the political appropriateness of the measures taken by the executive, and his requirement to give useful effect to his appeal by protecting fundamental rights. The result reveals the role of judges in crisis situations, torn between the reasons of necessity linked to the context and the protection of the rule of law.