Yet another chapter of the European citizenship saga sought clarification by AG Sharpston in the Prinz and Seeberger Opinion delivered last week on February 21, 2013. Concerning one of the most prevalent categories of citizens claiming rights under Arts 20 and 21 TFEU – students – Prinz and Seeberger discusses a classic situation that has pervaded the over 20 years of Union citizenship development. Effectively, AG Sharpston aims to explicate the notion of proportionality in citizenship, which has for years escaped valid clarification. She discusses the different strands of objectives of integration, with more substantial meaning than it would appear at first. Continue reading
Does loss of the right to vote for residing more than 15 years outside the UK violate EU freedom of movement?
On 25 October 2012 the Court of Appeal handed down a judgment ( EWCA Civ 1378) on whether UK laws restricting the vote to right after 15 years of non-UK residence violated EU freedom of movement.
The case is interesting as not only is it the first time the compatibility of the 15 year rule with freedom of movement has been tested, it also discusses the extent national voting rules fall into member states’ competence. Continue reading
The case of AB v Home Office raises the question of whether the doctrine of state liability is robust enough to remedy situations where national officials misapply EU law. The case concerned Ms C, a Bolivian national, who entered the UK as a student in 2006. Soon after arriving she met Mr B, a Swedish citizen who had lived in the UK since about 1996. Their daughter was born in London in May 2007: as the baby girl was given Swedish citizenship, she was like her father a migrant Union citizen. Ms C’s student visa expired in January 2008: in March 2008 she applied to the Home Office for an EEA residence card. The ground cited was the existence of a durable relationship with Mr B, a Union citizen and at that time a migrant EU worker. The events that befell them are noteworthy for many reasons but this note will focus on just two: the rights of third country nationals who are not ‘family members’ under EU citizenship law and the limits of the remedy of state liability
Ten days ago Aidan and Raza Husain QC spoke at the last of Matrix’s series of evening seminars on EU law as it applies to domestic practice areas. The session was devoted to immigration law. For those who are interested, here is Aidan’s paper on Free movement of EU citizens within the EU. As we all know, the concept of citizenship has been explored in numerous judgments of the CJEU since the concept was introduced into EU law by the Treaty of Maastricht. Aidan discusses the rights held by EU citizens with particular reference to the Charter of Fundamental Rights, touching on various topical issues including prisoner voting rights (which, as he makes clear, is not just an ECHR issue) and access to legal aid.
Watch out for the second paper, on EU asylum and refugee status law, next week.