Tomorrow Wednesday 17th January at 0930, CADS, BHOV, and five private individuals, including 2 CADS members and your chairman, will be in an Amsterdam court – a first for nearly all of us.

The court is considering whether UK citizens will keep their EU citizenship post-Brexit

Once an EU citizen, always an EU citizen? This, in a nutshell, is the question under consideration.

“There is much debate about what happens to UK citizens and their rights as EU citizens if and when the UK leaves the EU,” said Christiaan Alberdingk Thijm, the eminent Dutch lawyer and partner at bureau Brandeis in Amsterdam arguing the case. “We hope this case will settle once and for all the issue of whether European citizenship and the accompanying rights are inalienable.”
In this hearing in the Amsterdam District Court, Alberdingk Thijm is seeking to have the honourable Judge Mr Bakels ask preliminary questions to the Court of Justice of the European Union (CJEU) on how to interpret EU law. The CJEU has the ultimate say in matters concerning the interpretation of European Union law.

“The negotiators in Brussels all assume that the consequence of Brexit will be that British citizens living in an EU member state will lose their European citizenship. However, national and European citizenship are not necessarily linked. The CJEU has ruled before that the rights that are awarded to European citizens are autonomous,” Alberdingk Thijm said. Should the Amsterdam District Court decide to ask questions to the CJEU, the European court may decide that Brits in the Netherlands will keep their current residence and travel rights despite Brexit.