Court of Justice deals blow to 'welfare tourism' in EU

Host states can lawfully refuse social assistance to job seekers

(ANSA) - Brussels, September 15 - Host EU states can lawfully deny EU immigrants social assistance when their right of residence arises solely out of the search for employment, the European Court of Justice said in a judgement handed down on Tuesday.
    The ruling concerned a case involving German labour authorities and four Swedish nationals of Bosnian origin who had been denied certain non-contributory social security benefits by way of basic provision on grounds they were in Germany only to seek work. The court recalled that in order to obtain basic social assistance EU citizens can claim equal treatment with nationals of a host member State only if their residence complies with the conditions of the 2004 Free Movement of Citizens Directive defining the right of free movement of EU and EFTA citizens. The judgement applies to all EU states.
   

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