Current and past projects

The Migration Law Clinic will accept new cases in January 2020. The students will work on new cases from February 2020 until July 2020. 

If you have suggestions for cases or topics for the Migration Law Clinic, you can contact the Clinic coordinator ( See also under ‘For Clients’.

The Migration Law Clinic is currently working on two projects concerning cases, which have been referred to the Court of Justice of the EU (CJEU) by the Dutch Council of State.

Detention of Asylum Status Holders in other EU Member States

The first project concerns three cases, in which the Council of State has referred a preliminary question on 4 September 2019. The question concerns the detention of migrants, who have received an asylum status in another EU Member State and have applied for asylum in the Netherlands. Their asylum applications have been declared inadmissible by the Dutch authorities and they had to return to the EU Member State that has granted them international protection. The Council of State has asked the CJEU the following preliminary question:

Does Directive 2008/115/EC (in particular Articles 3, 4, 6 and 15) prohibit that a migrant, who has been granted international protection in another EU Member State, is placed in aliens detention on the basis of national law,

having regard to the fact that the purpose of this detention is the return to this other Member State and for this reason the migrant has first been told to leave to the territory of this Member State, but no return decision has been taken after that?

The project is supervised by Galina Cornelisse and Denisa Fekollari

Interpretation of the Union Citizens Directive 

This case concerns a Polish national, who registered in the Netherlands on 9 November 2017. He worked in the Netherlands for five months. On 1 June 2018, the Dutch Immigration Service decided that the man had to leave the Netherlands, because he did not fulfil the requirements for stay in the Netherlands. The man had committed several crimes in the Netherlands (theft, pickpocketing, failure to show an ID, nuisance). The man left the Netherlands. He stayed with friends in Germany and committed a theft there on 23 October 2018. The man stated that he returned to the Netherlands on 21 November 2018. On 22 November he was arrested for shoplifting and was placed in aliens detention (return of migrants illegally staying). On 25 September 2019, The Council of State has referred the following preliminary questions in this case:

1.Does Art. 15 (1) of Directive 2004/38/EC  need to be explained as meaning that an EU citizen has complied with the decision, taken on the basis of this provision, to deport an EU citizen and that this decision does not have legal effect anymore, as soon as this citizen has left the territory of the host Member State within the lime-limit for voluntary return.

2.If question should be answered in the affirmative, does this Union citizen have the right to stay of max three months (art. 6(1) of the Directive) upon his direct return? Or can the host Member State take a new decision to deport the EU citizen in order to prevent that he enters the country continuously for short periods of time?

This project is supervised by Pieter Boeles and Shota Hitomi.

This is an overview of the cases supported by the Migration Law Clinic in the period 2013-2019:

Tabel 1.jpg

Tabel 2

Tabel 3

The Migration Law expert opinions can be found here.




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