Key facts of the case:
Reference for a preliminary ruling — Electronic communications networks and services — Directive 2002/21/EC — Article 4(1) — Right of appeal against a decision taken by a national regulatory authority — Effective appeal mechanism — Decision of a national regulatory authority to continue to apply pending the outcome of the appeal — Temporal effects of a decision of a national court annulling a decision of a national regulatory authority — Possibility of annulling a decision of the national regulatory authority with retroactive effect — Principles of legal certainty and protection of legitimate expectations
Results (sanctions) and key consequences of the case:
On those grounds, the Court (Second Chamber) hereby rules:
Article 4(1), first subparagraph, first and third sentences, and second subparagraph, of Directive 2002/21/EC of the European Parliament and of the Council of 7 March 2002 on a common regulatory framework for electronic communications networks and services (Framework Directive), as amended by Directive 2009/140/EC of the European Parliament and of the Council of 25 November 2009, in conjunction with Article 47 of the Charter of Fundamental Rights of the European Union, is to be interpreted as meaning that a national court hearing an appeal against a decision of the national regulatory authority must be able to annul that decision with retroactive effect if it finds that to be necessary in order to provide effective protection for the rights of the undertaking which has brought the appeal.