CJEU Case T-458/17 | Shindler and Others v Council of the European Union

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Series Details T-458/17
Publication Date 2017-2018
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Judgment from the Court of Justice of the European Union (CJEU) on the admissibility of the application for the General Court to annul the Decision of the Council of the European Union authorising the opening of negotiations relating to the United Kingdom's withdrawal from the European Union (EU).

Further information:

A number of British citizens residing in other EU Member States brought an action before the General Court in July 2017, requesting it to annul a Council Decision adopted on 22 May 2017 authorising the European Commission to open negotiations with the United Kingdom (UK) aimed at setting out the arrangements for its withdrawal from the European Union.

The applicants claimed that they were deprived of the right to vote in the referendum that led to the UK's request to leave the EU on account of their expatriation, that the contested Decision would have a direct impact on the rights which they derive from the EU Treaties and it constituted an act by which the Council accepted the UK's notification of intention to withdraw from the EU. They also asserted that the contested Decision did not include the objective of ensuring that they would maintain their status as EU citizens and submitted that the withdrawal procedure would be void in the absence of constitutional authorisation. Lastly, the applicants claimed that this action before the Court became their sole effective form of remedy before the loss of their status as EU citizens.

The Council asked the General Court to declare the action inadmissible and to hold that it cannot accordingly be heard, since the contested decision is not open to challenge by natural or legal persons and the applicants have no interest or standing to bring proceedings against it.

On 26 November 2018, the General Court decided to dismiss the action as inadmissible since the Decision of the Council authorising the opening of negotiations on Brexit does not produce binding legal effects capable of affecting the interests of the applicants by bringing about a distinct change in their legal position.

Source Link http://curia.europa.eu/juris/documents.jsf?num=T-458/17
Related Link(s)
Commentary and Analysis
EU Law Analysis, 26/11/2018: How to protect the rights of UK citizens in the EU27 after Brexit? Analysis of the Shindler judgment http://eulawanalysis.blogspot.com/2018/11/how-to-protect-rights-of-uk-citizens-in.html
Bloomberg, 26/11/2018: Does Brexit Mean Brexit? EU Judges Could Play Pivotal Role https://www.bloomberg.com/news/articles/2018-11-26/does-brexit-mean-brexit-eu-judges-could-play-pivotal-role
The Local, 20/12/2018: How a group of Brits took up a struggle for millions of their co-citizens: Part One https://www.thelocal.com/20181220/how-a-group-of-brits-took-up-a-struggle-for-millions-of-their-co-citizens-part-one
EUCRIM: News, 16/01/2019: Brexit: Citizens Fail Before European Court https://eucrim.eu/news/brexit-citizens-fail-european-court/

Irish Legal News, 05/07/2018: World War Two veteran to challenge Brexit at European Court of Justice https://www.irishlegal.com/article/world-war-two-veteran-to-challenge-brexit-at-european-court-of-justice
The Guardian, 26/11/2018: Brexit: European court rejects British expats' referendum challenge https://www.theguardian.com/law/2018/nov/26/european-court-rejects-british-expats-brexit-referendum-harry-shindler
BBC News, 26/11/2018: EU court rejects Britons' anti-Brexit case https://www.bbc.co.uk/news/world-europe-46345706
The Local (Sweden), 26/11/2018: EU court rules against British expats' challenge over 'illegal' Brexit https://www.thelocal.se/20181126/european-court-rules-against-british-expats-challenge-over-illegal-brexit
Reuters, 26/11/2018: UK expatriates cannot challenge Brexit talks - EU court https://www.reuters.com/article/idUSKCN1NV0TU

EUR-LEX: Judgment of the General Court of 26 November 2018. Harry Shindler and Others v Council of the European Union https://eur-lex.europa.eu/legal-content/EN/TXT/?uri=CELEX:62017TJ0458
CJEU, Press Release, 26/11/2018: Judgment in Case T-458/17 Shindler and Others v Council of the European Union https://curia.europa.eu/jcms/upload/docs/application/pdf/2018-11/cp180184en.pdf

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