Key facts of the case:
The applicant, a female citizen of Somalia with a recognized refugee status in Slovenia, filed a constitutional complaint and requested a review of constitutionality of the International Protection Act after the Ministry of the Interior dismissed her request for the family reunification with her minor sister. The Ministry of the Interior based its decision on Art. 16.b of the International Protection Act which, at that time, excluded – for purposes of family reunification – sisters from the group of legally recognized family members. Legal actions at the Administrative Court and the Supreme Court were also dismissed.
Outcome of the case:
Article 16.b of the International Protection Act has been declared unconstitutional. The judgments of the Supreme Court and the Administrative Court were abrogated, a decision of the Ministry of the Interior was annulled ab initio. The case was remanded to the Ministry of the Interior for a new decision. This decision was taken on the grouds that the purpose of the International Protection Act is to respect the right to family reunification not only for members of nuclear family but also for members of other living communities which are in essence similar to it if special circumstances of the case indicate so.
18. In determination of the beforehand case, European Union law is also applicable. Article 7 of the Charter determines the right to respect for private and family life. Any limitation on the exercise of this right must be prescribed by law and must respect the essence of those rights, while respecting the principle of proportionality (cf. Charter, Article 52, paragraph 1).