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Document 62009CA0208

Case C-208/09: Judgment of the Court (Second Chamber) of 22 December 2010 (reference for a preliminary ruling from the Verwaltungsgerichtshof — Austria) — Ilonka Sayn-Wittgenstein v Landeshauptmann von Wien (European citizenship — Freedom to move and reside in the Member States — Law of a Member State with constitutional status abolishing the nobility in that State — Surname of an adult, a national of that State, obtained by adoption in another Member State, in which that adult resides — Title of nobility and nobiliary particle forming part of the surname — Registration by the authorities of the first Member State in the register of civil status — Correction of the entry by the authorities on their own initiative — Removal of the title of nobility and nobiliary particle)

OJ C 63, 26.2.2011, p. 4–4 (BG, ES, CS, DA, DE, ET, EL, EN, FR, IT, LV, LT, HU, MT, NL, PL, PT, RO, SK, SL, FI, SV)

26.2.2011   

EN

Official Journal of the European Union

C 63/4


Judgment of the Court (Second Chamber) of 22 December 2010 (reference for a preliminary ruling from the Verwaltungsgerichtshof — Austria) — Ilonka Sayn-Wittgenstein v Landeshauptmann von Wien

(Case C-208/09) (1)

(European citizenship - Freedom to move and reside in the Member States - Law of a Member State with constitutional status abolishing the nobility in that State - Surname of an adult, a national of that State, obtained by adoption in another Member State, in which that adult resides - Title of nobility and nobiliary particle forming part of the surname - Registration by the authorities of the first Member State in the register of civil status - Correction of the entry by the authorities on their own initiative - Removal of the title of nobility and nobiliary particle)

2011/C 63/06

Language of the case: German

Referring court

Verwaltungsgerichtshof

Parties to the main proceedings

Applicant: Ilonka Sayn-Wittgenstein

Defendant: Landeshauptmann von Wien

Re:

Reference for a preliminary ruling — Verwaltungsgerichtshof — Interpretation of Art. 18 EC — Constitutional law of a Member State aimed at abolishing the nobility in that State and prohibiting its nationals from bearing foreign noble titles — Refusal of the authorities of that Member State to enter in the register of births a noble title and a noble particle forming part of a surname which an adult person, being a national of that State, acquired in another Member State, in which she resides, following her adoption by a national of that latter State

Operative part of the judgment

Article 21 TFEU must be interpreted as not precluding the authorities of a Member State, in circumstances such as those in the main proceedings, from refusing to recognise all the elements of the surname of a national of that State, as determined in another Member State — in which that national resides — at the time of his or her adoption as an adult by a national of that other Member State, where that surname includes a title of nobility which is not permitted in the first Member State under its constitutional law, provided that the measures adopted by those authorities in that context are justified on public policy grounds, that is to say, they are necessary for the protection of the interests which they are intended to secure and are proportionate to the legitimate aim pursued.


(1)  OJ C 193, 15.08.2009.


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