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EU TO PROBE AUSTRIAN FAMILY BENEFITS

 

Due to a joint action by the V4 member states, the European Union will launch a probe into rules adopted by Austria reducing family allowances to children of non-Austrian EU workers, the state secretary for family and youth affairs said.

“The Visegrad countries have taken a successful joint action against Austria’s decision to reduce family benefits to children of EU citizens working in Austria, including Hungarians, from January 1,” Katalin Novák said.

Austria is going to lower family benefits to EU workers employed in Austria on their children not living in the country from January 1, 2019.

After the V4 countries as well as Lithuania, Slovenia and Bulgaria called on the European Commission to take the necessary measures, European Commissioner Marianne Thyssen said the EC would launch a probe into the Austrian decision’s compatibility with EU law.

The seven countries concerned argued that the Austrian decision severely infringes EU law, the principles of equal treatment and coordination in social security, and constitutes unjustified discrimination as the foreign workers pay the same taxes and contributions as Austrian citizens.

Thyssen said the EC is convinced that all EU citizens are entitled to the same rights, and nobody should be discriminated against in terms of child benefits either.