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CJEU Case 133/19 / Judgment

B. M. M. and Others v État belge

Policy area:
Justice, freedom and security
Deciding Body type:
Court of Justice of the European Union
Deciding Body:
Court (Third Chamber)
Decision date:

Key facts of the case:

Reference for a preliminary ruling — Area of freedom, security and justice — Immigration policy — Right to family reunification — Directive 2003/86/EC — Article 4(1) — Concept of a ‘minor child’ — Article 24(2) of the Charter of Fundamental Rights of the European Union — Best interests of the child — Article 47 of the Charter of Fundamental Rights — Right to an effective remedy — Children of the sponsor who have reached majority during the decision-making procedure or court proceedings against the decision refusing the family reunification application.

Outcome of the case:

On those grounds, the Court (Third Chamber) hereby rules: 

  1. Point (c) of the first subparagraph of Article 4(1) of Council Directive 2003/86/EC of 22 September 2003 on the right to family reunification must be interpreted as meaning that the date which should be referred to for the purpose of determining whether an unmarried third-country national or refugee is a minor child, within the meaning of that provision, is that of the submission of the application for entry and residence for the purpose of family reunification for minor children, and not that of the decision on that application by the competent authorities of that Member State, as the case may be, after an action brought against a decision rejecting such an application.
  2. Article 18 of Directive 2003/86, read in the light of Article 47 of the Charter of Fundamental Rights of the European Union, must be interpreted as precluding an action against the rejection of an application for family reunification of a minor child from being dismissed as inadmissible on the sole ground that the child has reached majority during the court proceedings.