Landmark NI case will be heard in European Court of Justice
Press Release – 21 November 2019 Landmark NI case will be heard in European Court of Justice
A man living in Northern Ireland is set to be one of only a handful of people from the province to have an appeal heard by the European Court of Justice, it has been confirmed. The landmark case relates to child maintenance orders made in his native Poland and centres around whether or not the payment decisions are legally enforceable.
The man’s legal team have argued that the decisions cannot be applied because they were made five years before Poland’s accession to the EU in 2004. The court will rule on whether or not maintenance regulations apply only to those decisions which were given in States that were member of the EU at the time those decisions were made.
The appellant, who has been granted anonymity, is being represented by Dungannon based PA Duffy and Company Solicitors. According to his legal representative Mr. Conal McGarrity, the outcome of the proceedings will have far-reaching consequences: “This is a landmark case involving a point of EU law that is currently without precedent, meaning that it has now been successfully referred to the ECJ for a decision.
The outcome of the decision will have a very significant impact on the application of law across all EU member states in the area of child maintenance, particularly for states who have recently joined and who intend to join the EU in the future. “The significance of this case is further compounded by the fact that it could well be one of the last cases from the United Kingdom to be heard in the European Court – so the eyes of the legal world will be fixed on the outcome.” The case is due to be heard later this year.