The ECJ (Court of Justice of the European Union) has now confirmed that the limitation period only starts to run in 2017 (the year of publication of the Commission’s decision) and not already in 2016 (the year of the press release).
ECJ held: “In those circumstances, it cannot reasonably be considered that in the present case, the elements necessary to enable [the claimant] to bring its action for damages became known to it on the date of publication of the press release relating to Decision C(2016) 4673 final, namely 19 July 2016. On the contrary, the claimant may reasonably be considered to have acquired such knowledge on the date of publication of the summary of Decision C(2016) 4673 final in the Official Journal of the European Union, namely 6 April 2017.
Consequently, the full effectiveness of Article 101 TFEU requires it to be considered that in the present case, the limitation period began to run on the day of the publication.”
This allows injured parties to sue for claims even by the end of 2022. This favourable position is all the more valuable as there are now already three very plaintiff-friendly decisions of the Federal Supreme Court, which means that the prospects can be described as intact.