Friday

1st Dec 2023

Dutch request to clarify Brexit Britons' rights annulled

  • Pro-EU citizens demonstrating against Brexit in London, March 2017. (Photo: sgoldswo)

The Amsterdam court of appeal ruled on Tuesday (19 June) that the Court of Justice of the EU will not be asked to clarify the post-Brexit rights of UK citizens in the Netherlands after all, in a ruling which may have repercussions for the 1.2m Britons estimated to live in the EU.

It follows the ruling by a lower judge in the Dutch capital, last February.

Read and decide

Join EUobserver today

Become an expert on Europe

Get instant access to all articles — and 20 years of archives. 14-day free trial.

... or subscribe as a group

That judge had ruled in favour of five Britons living in the Netherlands worried about losing their EU citizenship as a consequence of the UK's exit from the EU.

The judge, Floris Bakels, was planning to ask the Luxembourg-based EU court to ask if the UK's withdrawal automatically leads to Britons' loss of EU citizenship, and if not, whether there should be any conditions or limits applied to the preservation of rights and obligations.

However, Bakels held off on sending his questions to Luxembourg, because the Dutch state and the city of Amsterdam appealed his decision.

On Tuesday, the higher court agreed with the Netherlands and Amsterdam.

The court of appeals said that the plaintiffs' concerns had not been concrete enough.

"We are obviously disappointed with the court's decision," said one of the plaintiffs, Stephen Huyton, on the blog of his lawyer.

"This case has always been about seeking clarification. Not only for the 46,000 Brits living in the Netherlands, but also for the 1.2 million Brits living in other EU countries. Given today's judgment much uncertainty remains," he said.

"The claimants are currently carefully examining the judgment in order to determine next steps," said their lawyer, Christiaan Alberdingk Thijm.

"These may include an appeal to the Dutch Supreme Court within three months or initiating a proceeding on the merits," he noted.

The future of UK citizens' rights is subject to UK-EU negotiations on the exit agreement.

UK pledges easy registration for EU citizens after Brexit

Ahead of Brexit negotiations later this week, the UK government insists that its planned new system for EU citizens applying for a "settled status"after Brexit will be "streamlined, low-cost and user-friendly."

EU tells UK to stop with Brexit 'fantasies'

After the latest round of Brexit talks, a senior EU official sounded the alarm bell: progress on the key Irish border issue remains elusive, while the London government is chasing pipe dreams.

Russia loses seat on board of chemical weapons watchdog

Russia lost its seat on the board of the Organization for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons for the first time in the organisation's history — while Ukraine, Poland, and Lithuania were elected to the executive council.

Opinion

'Loss and Damage' reparations still hang in balance at COP28

There is still work to be done — especially when it comes to guaranteeing the Global North's participation in financing Loss and Damage, and ensuring the Global South has representation and oversight on the World Bank's board.

Latest News

  1. Israel recalls ambassador to Spain in new diplomatic spat
  2. Migrant return bill 'obstructed' as EU states mull new position
  3. Paris and Berlin key to including rape in gender-violence directive
  4. What are the big money debates at COP28 UN climate summit?
  5. 'Pay or okay?' — Facebook & Instagram vs the EU
  6. EU offers Turkey upgrade, as Sweden nears Nato entry
  7. Russia loses seat on board of chemical weapons watchdog
  8. Finland's closure of Russia border likely violates asylum law

Stakeholders' Highlights

  1. Nordic Council of MinistersArtist Jessie Kleemann at Nordic pavilion during UN climate summit COP28
  2. Nordic Council of MinistersCOP28: Gathering Nordic and global experts to put food and health on the agenda
  3. Friedrich Naumann FoundationPoems of Liberty – Call for Submission “Human Rights in Inhume War”: 250€ honorary fee for selected poems
  4. World BankWorld Bank report: How to create a future where the rewards of technology benefit all levels of society?
  5. Georgia Ministry of Foreign AffairsThis autumn Europalia arts festival is all about GEORGIA!
  6. UNOPSFostering health system resilience in fragile and conflict-affected countries

Join EUobserver

Support quality EU news

Join us