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Committee on the Protection of the Rights of All Migrant Workers and Members of Their Families, General comment No. 2 on the rights of migrant workers in an irregular situation and members of their families

2. Right to social security
‘67. With respect to social security, article 27, paragraph 1, of the Convention provides that all migrant workers and members of their families shall have the right to the same treatment granted to nationals of the State of employment, insofar as they fulfil the requirements provided for by the applicable legislation of that State and the applicable bilateral and multilateral treaties. When a State party enacts legislation providing for the payment of a social benefit, whether conditional or not on the prior payment of contributions, and if the migrant worker concerned fulfils the requirements provided for in such legislation, it cannot arbitrarily exclude him or her from that benefit or limit his or her access to such benefit, as the prohibition of discrimination applies to the right to social security. Accordingly, any distinction based on nationality or migration status must be prescribed by law, pursue a legitimate aim under the Convention, be necessary in the specific circumstances, and be proportionate to the legitimate aim pursued. While States parties enjoy a certain margin of discretion in assessing whether and to what extent differences in otherwise similar situations justify different treatment, they must explain how such different treatment, based exclusively on nationality or migration status, is compatible with articles 7 and 27. [...]‘