Key facts of the case:
Reference for a preliminary ruling — Transport — Directive 2003/59/EC — Obligation to obtain an initial qualification — Article 4 — Acquired rights — Holders of driving licences issued before the dates laid down in Article 4 — Exemption from the obligation to obtain an initial qualification — National legislation setting an additional requirement for periodic training of 35 hours duration in order to benefit from that exemption
Results (sanctions) and key consequences of the case:
...the Court (Eighth Chamber) hereby rules:
Article 4 of Directive 2003/59/EC of the European Parliament and of the Council of 15 July 2003 on the initial qualification and periodic training of drivers of certain road vehicles for the carriage of goods or passengers, amending Council Regulation (EEC) No 3820/85 and Council Directive 91/439/EEC and repealing Council Directive 76/914/EEC must be interpreted as not precluding national legislation, such as that at issue in the main proceedings, under which, before the driving activity in question may be carried out, periodic training of 35 hours duration has to be completed by persons who are exempted, under Article 4, from the requirement that drivers of certain road vehicles for the carriage of goods or passengers obtain an initial qualification.
- Lastly, an additional requirement, such as that imposed by the legislation at issue in the main proceedings, does not infringe Article 15 of the Charter. In fact, under Article 52(2) of the Charter, restrictions may be placed on the rights guaranteed by Article 15, provided that those restrictions genuinely meet objectives of general interest pursued by the European Union and do not constitute, with regard to the aim pursued, a disproportionate and intolerable interference which infringes upon the very substance of the rights so guaranteed (see, to that effect, judgments of 30 June 2005 in Alessandrini and Others v Commission, C‑295/03 P, EU:C:2005:413, paragraph 86 and the case-law cited, and 4 July 2013 in Gardella, C‑233/12, EU:C:2013:449, paragraph 39). As has been found in paragraph 47 of this judgment, legislation such as that at issue in the main proceedings meets those requirements.