The Moroccan M. Chakroun had lived in the Netherlands for two years when he married in 1972. His new wife remained in Morocco, while he worked as a manufacturing employee in the Netherlands until he lost his job in 2005. A year later, Mrs. Chakroun applied for a Dutch residency permit so she could be with her husband. The request was denied: her husband’s unemployment benefits were below the required minimum income of 120 percent of minimum wage.You can look at it that way, or you could say that the European Union is riding roughshod over the democratically decided will of the Dutch people.
The Chakrouns appealed their case, finally ending up in the Court of Justice of the European Union, which ruled in the couple’s favour last week. The minimum income requirement for foreign marriage partners, which is higher in the Netherlands than anywhere else in the EU, is at odds with the European right to family reunifications.as laid down in European Council Directive 2003/86/EC.
After the European court reprimanded the Netherlands for its policy, justice minister Ernst Hirsch Ballin told parliament this week he would be dropping the 120-percent requirement. His department will also stop distinguishing between people who were already married before they came to the Netherlands and people who want to bring a new partner here.
The minister was left with no other options, said professor Kees Groenendijk, the chairman of the Radboud University’s Centre for Migration Law. “The court’s ruling is unambiguous and sends a clear message to the Dutch government. It has been ignoring European regulations for years.”
You pays your money, you takes your choice.