'Transgenders can now have their gender changed on their birth certificate, and in the same spirit there should be room for an age change'. There's no legal precedent for changing one's age in the Netherlands.
The judge said he had some sympathy with Ratelband, but added there would be practical problems in allowing people to change their birth date, as it would mean legally deleting part of their lives. "Nowhere are you so discriminated against as with your age".
Ratelband argues that he feels two decades younger than he actually is - doctors told him he has the body of a younger man, he says, and while in most cases that compliment is rhetorical, Ratelband is taking a more literal approach.
He said on Thursday: "With this free (dom) of choice, choice of name, freeness of gender, I want to have my own age". The real question is: if you're going to change your date of birth, why not go all out and change the month as well?
Mr Emile Ratelbrand, an entrepreneur and self-help guru, is hoping that doing so will get him better luck with women, especially when he goes on dating app Tinder, as well as better job prospects. "When I'm on Tinder and it says I'm 69, I don't get an answer", he said. "If I'm 49, then I can buy a new house, drive a different auto", he said, according to a translation by The Guardian.
Mr Ratelband claims he is discriminated against because of his age and encounters problems in Dutch society on a daily basis.
Ratelband says his legal appeal is consistent with other forms of personal transformation that are gaining acceptance and government recognition in the Netherlands and around the world.
"Who were your parents looking after then? Who was that little boy back then?" If I'm 49, then I can buy a new house, drive a different vehicle.
The Arnhem city court in Gelderland province is expected to review the case and issue a written ruling within four weeks.
Ratelband, who's also a motivational speaker and trainer in neurolinguistics programming, told the judge he was willing to renounce his right to a pension.