Rights ques­tion left to Euro­pean Court of Jus­tice

Land­mark Brexit le­gal case brought by Bri­tons liv­ing abroad

Costa Blanca News (North Edition) - - NEWS - By Jack Troughton jtroughton@cb­news.es

THE EURO­PEAN Court of Jus­tice will be asked to de­ter­mine a test case in­volv­ing cit­i­zens' rights af­ter Bri­tain leaves the EU in March next year.

The land­mark le­gal case was brought by five Bri­tish na­tion­als in Hol­land, ar­gu­ing their ex­ist­ing EU cit­i­zens' rights could not be lost fol­low­ing the 2016 Brexit ref­er­en­dum.

A court in Am­s­ter­dam has now re­ferred the case to the Court of Jus­tice in Lux­em­bourg – and 1.2 mil­lion Bri­tish ex­pats liv­ing in Europe and three mil­lion Euro­pean cit­i­zens res­i­dent in the UK will watch its progress.

Jane Gold­ing, Chair of the Bri­tish in Europe pres­sure group al­liance, said: “We are de­lighted that the Dutch court has de­cided to re­fer this case to Lux­em­bourg. The ap­pli­cants have raised fun­da­men­tal ques­tions about the na­ture of their EU cit­i­zen­ship and the cir­cum­stances in which such essen­tial rights can be taken away.

“The Court of Jus­tice of the EU has played a key role in clar­i­fy­ing the scope of EU cit­i­zen­ship and it is ap­pro­pri­ate that it should be asked to iden­tify when those rights end.”

She called for a quick hear­ing and de­ci­sion from the court. “It is also clear that the EU and the UK can­not fi­nalise and sign off the fi­nal text on cit­i­zens’ rights in the with­drawal agree­ment un­til the court has given its rul­ing and we would ask them to re­spect the role of the court in this process.”

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