Request for a preliminary ruling from the District Court of The Hague (Netherlands) on the issue of family reunification for an ‘aged out’ unaccompanied child and her parents

Wednesday, October 26, 2016

The District Court of The Hague (Netherlands) has referred a request for a preliminary ruling to the Court of Justice of the European Union (CJEU) on the interpretation of Article 2(f) of the Family Reunification Directive (2003/86/EC).

The reference relates to a refugee who entered the Netherlands as an unaccompanied child. By the time she was granted refugee status, she had turned 18, but her status was retrospectively applied to the date of application. The applicant then requested family reunification with her parents. This was rejected because she was no longer a underage child.

The District Court has referred the following question to the CJEU:

Should ‘unaccompanied minor’ within the meaning of Article 2(f) of the Family Reunification Directive be understood to include a third-country national or stateless person below the age of eighteen, who has arrived on the territory of a Member State unaccompanied by an adult responsible by law or by custom, and who:         

a.     applies for asylum;
b.     turns 18 on the territory of the Member State during the asylum procedure;
c.     gets granted asylum retrospectively to the date of application; and
d.     subsequently requests family reunification? 
Based on an unofficial translation by the ELENA Weekly Legal Update.

This item was reproduced with the permission of ECRE from the weekly ELENA legal update supported by the Fundamental Rights and Citizenship Funding Programme and distributed by email. The purpose of these updates is to inform asylum lawyers and legal organizations supporting asylum seekers and refugees of recent developments in the field of asylum law. Please note that the information provided is taken from publicly available information on the internet. Every reasonable effort is made to make the content accurate and up to date at the time each item is published but no responsibility for its accuracy and correctness, or for any consequences of relying on it, is assumed by ECRE, the IRC or its partners.



Best interest of the child
Family reunification