A European citizen who becomes a British citizen does not lose the right to have a spouse from a non-EU country live with them in the UK, the European court of justice (ECJ) has ruled in a landmark case. After a five-month deliberation it has decided the Home Office was wrong to refuse a dual British-Spanish citizen the right to have her Algerian husband live with her in Britain. Immigration barristers say the ruling will have widespread implications for EU citizens applying for British passports and those married or considering marriage to a third-country national.
“This is great news for EU citizens who have moved to another European country because it enables them to benefit from sensible EU rules on being joined by family members,” said the immigration barrister Colin Yeo, an expert on freedom of movement. “The court has held that the UK has been wrong to refuse to recognise free movement rights for all those EU citizens who have been naturalising as British following the Brexit referendum. After Brexit, though, all those rights will be lost unless an agreement is reached to retain them.” The case of García Ormazábal and her husband, Toufik Lounes, was referred to the European court by the high court in London last year after the Home Office rejected an application by the Algerian for permanent residency in the UK.
Read more: Lisa O’Carroll, Guardian, http://bit.ly/2iW8Ez3