Singh and Sledevska v Minister for Justice, Equality and Law Reform


Respondent/Defendant:Minister for Justice, Equality and Law Reform
Court/s:High Court
Citation/s:[2010] IEHC 86
Nature of Proceedings:Judicial Review
Judgment Date/s:17 Feb 2010
Judge:Cooke J
Category:EU Treaty Rights
Keywords:EU Treaty Rights, Free Movement, Freedom of Movement (Right to), Residence Permit, Union Citizen
Country of Origin:India; Latvia
Geographic Focus:Europe
References:Nearing v Minister for Justice, Equality and Law Reform

Mr Singh, an Indian citizen married Ms Sledevska, a Latvian citizen. In January 2009 Mr Singh applied to the Minister under the European Communities (Free Movement of Persons) Regulations, 2006 for a residence card as the spouse of a Union citizen exercising EU Treaty rights in the State. He provided no evidence of Ms Sledevska’s employment and his application was refused in June 2009. In July 2009 Mr Singh requested a review, and when Ms Sledevska returned to work after giving birth to their daughter in August 2009, he supplied the Minister with evidence of her employment. No decision on the review had been taken by February 2010 when the Applicants initiated judicial review proceedings. The Applicants sought the leave of the High Court to apply by way of judicial review for an order of certiorari quashing the Minister’s refusal and an order of mandamus  requiring him to determine their review.

The High Court refused leave to seek an order of certiorari because the application for judicial review was out of time [the time limit for certiorari is set by Order 84 of the Rules of the Superior Courts at six months from the date of the impugned decision] and no explanation had been give as to why time might be extended. The Court further observed that no arguable case could be made out as to the existence of any legal defect in that refusal decision because  the Minister had no option but to question whether Ms Sledevska was a Union citizen residing in the State in exercise of her rights under the 2006 Regulations. The Minister had been given no information in relation to her arrival in the State or any evidence of her ever having been employed at any point prior to the date of Mr Singh’s application. The Court concluded that the Minister’s reason for refusal was clearly justified and even inevitable. The Court then considered the application for an order of mandamus and concluded that the decision of the Minister was still pending and there was no basis for asserting that it had been wrongfully refused. Material ingredients for the review were still being submitted in September 2009 and thus, it could not be said that the decision on the review had been so extensively delayed as to warrant it being treated as an unlawful refusal.

Principles:In an application for residence card under the European Communities (Free Movement of Persons) Regulations, 2006 the Union citizen must provide direct evidence establishing the basis of her entitlement to and her exercise of the right of residence and of having moved to the State in exercise of her EU Treaty rights.
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