69-Year-Old Wants To Legally Change His Age To 49 Because He 'Feels That Way' And 'Times Have Changed'

He claimed that his real age was causing him major inconveniences in his life and wanted to change it.

Emile Ratelband Good Morning Britain / YouTube

A man living in the Netherlands revealed that he is actively attempting to legally have his age reduced by almost two decades.

In 2018, Emile Ratelband, a 69-year-old entrepreneur, filed a lawsuit against the Dutch government with the argument that he feels 20 years younger than he actually is, and wants his new age reflected on all of his documents.

Emile Ratelband wants to legally change his age to 49 because he doesn't feel his actual age.

While appearing on a 2018 episode of 'Good Morning Britain,' Ratelband told hosts Piers Morgan and Susanna Reid that while having a conversation with his doctor, he was told his "biological age" is 42, but is unable to go by it because his legal age is 69.


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When asked if Ratelband was seeking to legally reduce his age to almost 27 years lower, he confirmed that was the case because he simply "feels that way," and pointed out that it is now possible for him to do so as the "times have changed."


According to the Guardian, Ratelband told a court in Arnhem in the Netherlands that he did not feel “comfortable” with his date of birth, and even compared his wish to alter it to people who identified as transgender.

He claimed that due to his official age not matching his emotional one, he was having trouble finding both love and work. Ratelband asked for his date of birth to be changed from March 11, 1949, to March 11, 1969.

"We live in a time when you can change your name and change your gender. Why can't I decide my own age?" he said, according to BBC. Ratelband argued that he sees himself as a "young god" and that changing his age would allow him to "live differently," saying he would get more matches on Tinder if he could use a younger age.

“When I’m 69, I am limited. If I’m 49, then I can buy a new house, drive a different car,” he said. “I can take up more work. When I’m on Tinder and it says I’m 69, I don’t get an answer. When I’m 49, with the face I have, I will be in a luxurious position.”


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The court eventually rejected Ratelband's plea for his age to be legally changed.

While Ratelband was convinced that he needed to have his age legally changed to 49 to feel most like himself, a district court in the eastern Dutch city of Arnhem did not seem to agree.

Despite promising that he would be willing to delay receiving a pension, the court denied his request. "[U]nlike the situation with respect to a change in registered name or gender, there are a variety of rights and duties related to age, such as the right to vote and the duty to attend school," the court wrote in a statement. "If Mr. Ratelband's request was allowed, those age requirements would become meaningless."

The court also argued that there was no evidence of Ratelband facing work discrimination based on his age, despite saying it had happened, and rejected his argument on the basis of free will, writing that "free will does not extend so far as to make every desired outcome legally possible."


According to USA Today, Ratelband wasn't too deterred by the court's rejection of his request and claimed that he would continue to fight for his age to be 49.

"This is great!” he gushed. “The rejection of (the) court is great ... because they give all kinds of angles where we can connect when we go in appeal.” The 69-year-old man also rebutted against the court's insistence that his desire to change his age did not correlate with people seeking to change their name for gender purposes.

"I say it’s comparable because it has to do with my feeling, with respect about who I think ... I am, my identity,” he said.


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Nia Tipton is a Brooklyn-based entertainment, news, and lifestyle writer whose work delves into modern-day issues and experiences.