Ruiz Zambrano (European Citizenship): ECJ 8 Mar 2011

ECJ Citizenship of the Union – Article 20 TFEU – Grant of right of residence under European Union law to a minor child on the territory of the Member State of which that child is a national, irrespective of the previous exercise by him of his right of free movement in the territory of the Member States – Grant, in the same circumstances, of a derived right of residence, to an ascendant relative, a third country national, upon whom the minor child is dependent – Consequences of the right of residence of the minor child on the employment law requirements to be fulfilled by the third-country national ascendant relative of that minor
A Colombian national had been living in Belgium with his wife, and working (and paying social security contributions), but without a right to reside. Their three children, born between 2003 and 2005, acquired Belgian nationality at birth, and with it European citizenship and the right of free movement, under article 20 of the Treaty on the Functioning of the European Union (‘TFEU’). When in 2005 he lost his job, he was refused unemployment benefit, because under the relevant national law that depended on his having a right to reside. The European court held that the refusal of such a right was unlawful because it would result in the children being deprived of effective enjoyment of their rights as European citizens.


Skouris P


[2011] EUECJ C-34/09, C-34/09, [2011] All ER (EC) 491, [2011] 2 FCR 491, [2011] ECR I-1177, [2011] Imm AR 521, [2012] QB 265, [2011] INLR 481, ECLI:EU:C:2011:124, [2011] 2 CMLR 46, [2012] 2 WLR 886




Charter of Fundamental Rights of the European Union, TFEU 20




OpinionRuiz Zambrano (European Citizenship) ECJ 30-Sep-2010
ECJ Opinion – Articles 18, 20 and 21 TFEU – Fundamental rights as general principles of European Union law – Article 7 of the Charter of Fundamental Rights of the European Union – European citizenship – . .

Cited by:

CitedCampbell (Exclusion; Zambrano) Jamaica UTIAC 21-Mar-2013
UTIAC 1. Exclusion decisions are not be confused with exclusion orders.
2. It is settled law that the Secretary of State has the power to make an exclusion decision: see R (on the application of Naik) v . .
CitedNzolameso v City of Westminster SC 2-Apr-2015
The court was asked ‘When is it lawful for a local housing authority to accommodate a homeless person a long way away from the authority’s own area where the homeless person was previously living? ‘ The claimant said that on applying for housing she . .
CitedAgyarko and Ikuga, Regina (on The Applications of) v Secretary of State for The Home Department SC 22-Feb-2017
Applications were made by foreign nationals, residing unlawfully in the UK, for leave to remain as the partners of British citizens with whom they had formed relationships during their unlawful residence, relying primarily on the duty imposed on the . .
CitedDereci and Others (European Citizenship) ECJ 15-Nov-2011
ECJ Grand Chamber – Citizenship of the Union – Right of residence of nationals of third countries who are family members of Union citizens – Refusal based on the citizen’s failure to exercise the right to freedom . .
CitedHC, Regina (on The Application of) v Secretary of State for Work and Pensions SC 15-Nov-2017
This appeal concerns the rights of so-called ‘Zambrano carers’ and their children to financial support from the state. The appellant, an Algerian national married and had children here, but was refused housing after the break up the marriage. HC . .
CitedSanneh, Regina (on The Application of) v Secretary of State for Work and Pensions Admn 30-Apr-2012
Challenge to payment of Zambrano Income Support . .
CitedDH (Jamaica) v Secretary of State for The Home Department CA 21-Dec-2012
Elias LJ said: ‘The right of residence is a right to reside in the territory of the EU. It is not a right to any particular quality of life or to any particular standard of living. Accordingly, there is no impediment to exercising the right to . .
CitedSanneh, Regina (on The Application of) v The Secretary of State for Work and Pensions and Another Admn 10-Apr-2013
. .
CitedSanneh and Others v Secretary of State for Work and Pensions CA 10-Feb-2015
The appeals concerned the question of whether ‘Zambrano carers’, who are non-EU citizens responsible for the care of an EU citizen child, are entitled to social assistance (that is, non-contributory welfare benefits) on the same basis as EU citizens . .
CitedSecretary Of State For The Home Department v CS (Judgment : Citizenship Of The Union) ECJ 13-Sep-2016
The Court of Justice held: ‘that there are very specific situations in which, despite the fact that the secondary law on the right of residence of third-country nationals does not apply and the Union citizen concerned has not made use of his freedom . .
CitedRendon Marin (Judgment : Citizenship Of The Union) ECJ 13-Sep-2016
ECJ (Grand Chamber) Reference for a preliminary ruling – Citizenship of the Union – Articles 20 and 21 TFEU – Directive 2004/38/EC – Right of a third-country national with a criminal record to reside in a Member . .
CitedPatel v Secretary of State for The Home Department SC 16-Dec-2019
Zambrano states that a non-member state national (‘TCN’) parent of an EU citizen child resident within the EU is entitled to
reside in the EU. This is solely to avoid the EU citizen child being deprived of the substance of their Union . .
Lists of cited by and citing cases may be incomplete.

European, Immigration, Children

Leading Case

Updated: 16 May 2022; Ref: scu.452172