Certain Member States were concerned about the so-called “welfare tourism”, i.e. the possibility of nationals of another Member State to enter their territory “solely” in order to claim benefits. Yesterday’s judgment in Case C-333/13 Dano comes to relieve those concerns.
In short the facts of the case can be summarised as follows. Ms Dano and her son, Romanian nationals, entered Germany and live in the city of Leipzig. Ms Dano receives child benefit for her son as well as another allowance paid out for a children, whose father’s identity is unknown (in total 317 Euro). In the background to the case, there is nothing to indicate that she has looked for a job in Germany. The case in the main proceedings was initiated when Ms Dano’s application for the grant of benefits by way of basic provision for jobseekers was rejected by the German administration (the child’s benefits are not at issue).
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Here is an interesting judgment coming from the EFTA Court in Case E-26/13 The Icelandic State v Atli Gunnarsson on 27 June 2014.
The case concerned Mr. Gunnarsson and his wife, Icelandic citizens, who resided in Denmark from 24 January 2004 to 3 September 2009. At the time, the couple’s total income consisted of unemployment benefit that Mr Gunnarsson’s wife received in Iceland and of Mr Gunnarsson’s own disability benefit together with benefit payments he received from two Icelandic pension funds. Mr Gunnarsson paid taxes on his income in Iceland, and claimed that he was overcharged in the period from 1 May 2004 to 1 October 2009 because he was prevented from utilising his wife’s personal tax credit while they resided in Denmark. Under the Icelandic tax legislation applicable at the time, the couple had to reside in Iceland for Mr Gunnarsson to be entitled to utilise his wife’s personal tax credit in addition to his own.
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