Dutch­man, 69, asks court to lower his age to 20 years

Tempo - - News -

A Dutch “young god” just months shy of his 70th birth­day has launched a le­gal bid to slash 20 years off his age as he looks to en­hance his prospects at work and in love.

In an un­prece­dented case in the Nether­lands, Emile Ratel­band told a tri­bunal that he wants to shift his birth date two decades later to March 11, 1969.

The life coach, who spe­cial­izes in “self aware­ness” train­ing, said he felt dis­crim­i­nated against be­cause of his ad­vanced years, adding that while he does not need dat­ing apps, the cus­tom of giv­ing his age to a prospec­tive lover was cramp­ing his style.

“I feel much younger than my age, I am a young god, I can have all the girls I want but not af­ter I tell them that I am 69,” Ratel­band told AFP on Thurs­day.

“I feel young, I am in great shape and I want this to be legally rec­og­nized be­cause I feel abused, ag­grieved and dis­crim­i­nated against be­cause of my age.”

The sin­gle fa­ther, who said he has tried in vain to stop his ba­sic pen­sion, told the tri­bunal on Mon­day that his pe­ti­tion was “le­git­i­mate”, liken­ing his bid for a le­gal rem­edy to peo­ple who reg­is­ter a change of of­fi­cial gen­der.

“To­day we can choose our work, gen­der, po­lit­i­cal and sex­ual ori­en­ta­tion. We even have the right to change our name. So why do we not have the right to change our age?” he said.

Ac­cord­ing to his doc­tor, his bi­o­log­i­cal age is be­tween 40 and 45, he said.

Ratel­band said while he was ini­tially greeted by “jeers” from mag­is­trates, he now be­lieves his lawyer – fa­mous crim­i­nal lawyer Jan-Hein Kui­jpers had “un­set­tled” the judge.

“This case is un­prece­dented, there is no jurispru­dence. The chances of suc­cess are min­i­mal but we be­lieve that the leg­is­la­tion must evolve with the times,” Kui­jpers told AFP.

The court must de­cide within four weeks.



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