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Possibility of re-opening cases concerning proof of retention of Danish citizenship based on a judgment of the Court of Justice of the European Union

Based on judgment of 12 March 2019 of the Court of Justice of the Europe-an Union, Case C-221/17 (Tjebbes), the Ministry of Immigration and Inte-gration has found that in connection with the examination of applications regarding proof of retention of Danish citizenship, which have been filed prior to the applicant's 22nd birthday, the Ministry must take into consid-eration a number of additional elements in order to perform an individual examination of the consequences of the loss of Danish citizenship and, as a result, the loss of citizenship of the European Union from the point of view of EU law. Thus, the Ministry will have to assess whether the consequences of the loss of citizenship of the European Union are proportional with the purpose of the loss (that is the consideration of a genuine link between the Danish citizens and Denmark being present).

Furthermore, in regard to children of a parent who prior to its 22nd birth-day applies for retention of Danish citizenship, the child’s citizenship will not automatically be lost as a consequence of the parent’s loss of citizen-ship, should the parent’s application be rejected. As a result of the judg-ment, in such cases where a child is faced with losing his or her Danish citizenship and, thus, his or her citizenship of the European Union in con-nection with a parent’s loss of Danish citizenship, an induvial, concrete as-sessment of the consequences of the child’s loss of citizenship of the Euro-pean Union must be made from the point of view of EU law, including in regard to both Article 7 (inter alia, the right to respect for family life), and Article 24 (children’s rights) of the Charter.
You can read about the Ministry of Immigration and Integration’s notifica-tion to the Naturalization Committee regarding the judgment and its legal effects here (in Danish).

Possibility of getting a case re-opened
The legal effects of the judgment will be applicable from the commence-ment of the interpreted provision in question, Article 20 TFEU, which came into effect on 1 November 1993.

Former Danish citizens who turned 22 on 1 November 1993 or later, and who have applied for retention of Danish citizenship prior to their 22nd birthday; and who have received a decision from the Ministry of Immigra-tion and Integration regarding the loss of citizenship pursuant to section 8 of the Danish Nationality Act which led to them losing their citizenship of the European Union, too, will be able to request the Ministry of Immigra-tion and Integration to re-open their application, if the loss resulted in con-sequences covered by EU law. Normally, the latter would be the case if the person in question prior to his or her 22nd birthday had established family ties or occupational ties to another member state in the EU besides Den-mark.

The same applies for people who have lost their Danish citizenship and at the same time their citizenship of the European Union as a result of being a child by a parent; and who after 1 November 1993 in a timely manner ap-plied for retention of Danish citizenship prior to their 22nd birthday, but had their applications rejected.

In connection with the examination of the re-opened cases, the Ministry of Immigration and Integration will place emphasis on the actual circum-stances, including the connecting factors applicable at the time of the ap-plicant's 22nd birthday. This means that connections to Denmark and other countries in the EU which were established after his or her 22nd birthday will not be taken into consideration during the assessment of whether the person concerned has retained his or her Danish nationality.

Read the judgement of 12 March 2019 of the Court of Justice of the Euro-pean
Union, Case C-221/17 (Tjebbes).