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Tjebbes (CJEU) C-22/17

Updated: Jan 8, 2022




Four people with dual nationalities, Tjebbes is one of them, lost their nationalities because of a new Dutch law. This law stated that Dutch people with dual-nationality would automatically lose their Dutch nationality after 10 years of non-renewal of a link between them and the Netherlands. However, these four people were unaware of the new law and only noticed it when they lost their nationality after 10 years passed. They decided to challenge the decision.

The CJEU had to see if this law that removes nationality (when the conditions are fulfilled) complied with EU law. If this law has due regard to EU law principles.


→ The law is compatible in abstracto with EU law as it has a legitimate objective aim/purpose. It is reasonable to demand a link between the individual and the MS.

→ However, the law must also respect the principle of proportionality. The court states that this principle requires the possibility of an individual examination of the individual case and its specific consequences.

Ex. give a remedy like an administrative reconsideration, appeal etc.

! But it’s up to the National Courts to ensure this (§41).

+ They have to verify that this loss is consistent with the fundamental rights of the Charter (§45).

Ex. right to family life, right of the child (minor loses EU-citizenship because mother forgets to apply)

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