November 2012 Child Benefit post Zambrano

01/11/2012
New regulations have been issued in relation to child benefit and child tax credit for non-European Economic Area (EEA) citizens with a right to reside following the Court of Justice of the European Union decision in the 'Zambrano' case.

In force from 8 November 2012, regulations exclude a claimant from eligibility to child benefit and child tax credit where their right of residence is required in order that a British citizen is not deprived of the genuine enjoyment of the rights of being a European Union citizen.
The explanatory memorandum states that, following the Court of Justice of the European Union ruling on the case of Zambrano (C-34/09), the Home Office will be amending the Immigration (European Economic Area) Regulations 2006 so as to provide a right to reside and a right to work to a non-EEA national who is a primary carer of a dependent British citizen only if the British citizen would otherwise be forced to leave the EEA and deprived of exercising their rights as an EU citizen.
However the memorandum goes on to say that -

'... the government also takes the view that this ruling does not explicitly carry with it a right to social security benefits, only a right to reside and a right to work in the United Kingdom. Therefore, in order to maintain the government’s current position regarding third country nationals accessing child benefit and the child tax credit, this instrument amends the regulations so that those persons who are within the scope of the ruling are treated as not being in Great Britain/Northern Ireland for the purpose of eligibility to child benefit and are treated as not being in the United Kingdom for the purpose of eligibility to the child tax credit.'

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