Home > News > Court of Appeal judgment on direct descendants and dependency in EU law

The Court of Appeal has given judgment in Latayan v Secretary of State for the Home Department [2020] EWCA Civ 191, concerning the meaning of “direct descendant” in Directive 2004/38/EC. Accepting the Secretary of State’s argument that the law was clear following the CJEUs judgment in SM v Entry Clearance Officer (C-129/18), the Court rejected the Appellant’s argument that an adult step-child could be treated as a “direct descendant” (and therefore a direct family member) of an EEA national, because only biological or legal parent-child relationships could count.

The Court also rejected a challenge to the findings below that the Appellant did not satisfy the dependency requirement for the purpose of being treated as an extended family member. Reiterating that dependency was a question of fact and that any appellant mounting a factual challenge on appeal faced a high hurdle, the Court decided that that the Appellant had not produced documentary or oral evidence of sufficient cogency to survive the scrutiny appropriate to a case of alleged adult dependency. The Court also repeated the guidance it had given in its earlier decision in Talpada v Secretary of State for the Home Department [2018] EWCA Civ 841, about the importance of proper pleadings on appeal.

Julia Smyth represented the Secretary of State.

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