The European Court of Justice has confirmed that jobless EU migrants can be barred from unemployment benefits without breaking the principle of equal treatment. The judgement related to the case of a Swedish national, Nazifa Alimanovic, and her three children, who lived in Germany. Ms Alimanovic and her family had their social security benefits cut off after she and her eldest daughter stopped working.
The ruling confirmed that EU citizens who have worked in another EU country and then lose their jobs cannot claim unemployment benefits indefinitely, but that if they fulfil certain requirements they are entitled to benefits for a minimum of six months.
Liberal Democrat MEP Catherine Bearder commented:
"This judgement has huge implications for the current EU debate in the UK. It confirms that jobseekers from elsewhere in the EU are not automatically entitled to claim benefits.
"I hope the myth of benefit tourism will now be put firmly to bed so we can focus instead on the many real and significant challenges facing the EU."