As citizens of the European Union
we all have rights under EU law. These rights are ultimately interpreted
and safeguarded by the Court of Justice
of the European Union. In over 25,000 rulings to date,
the Court has given decisions on a wide variety of matters
directly affecting our lives. Example case one. Air passenger rights. Thanks to court judgments, if your flight
is delayed by more than three hours, you can claim compensation. The Court has also ensured that airlines cannot cite technical
problems as an excuse to avoid paying. Example case two.
Google and the right to be forgotten. The Court of Justice has ruled that EU citizens have a right to ask
a search engine, such as Google, to remove entries relating to them
from the list of search results following a search on their name. Giving us greater control
over our presence on the web. Example case three.
Medical treatment within the EU. In a series of cases, the Court of Justice
declared that if a citizen goes to another EU country
in order to receive medical treatment, they should be reimbursed by their
national health insurance scheme under the same conditions as at home. If this treatment
requires a stay in hospital, the home country can insist that they give
prior authorisation before treatment takes place… …but the Court has ruled that this can’t
be refused for standard procedures unless the same or equivalent treatment
can be provided at home within a reasonable time. This principle is rooted
in ‘the freedom to provide services’, which is enshrined in the EU treaty. One of the many treaty articles agreed
upon for the protection of EU citizens, and safeguarded by the Court of Justice
of the European Union.