Local Number Portability (LNP) allows customers to change local services providers within a service territory without having to change telephone numbers. By allowing a customer to retain his or her telephone number, regulators believe that it removes a major barrier to competition. The service, however, required telephone companies' networks to undergo reconfiguration to be able to process the network call path so that a customer changing telephone companies did not have to change telephone numbers. Some believed that customers would be less likely to go to a different service provider or new competitor if it meant they had to change telephone numbers.
It doesn't mean you can take your phone number anywhere. It just means you can take your number from company to company serving the same service territory.
Who gets the money?
Local telephone companies, for recovery of the costs they incurred for creating new facilities, upgrading the network to accommodate number portability, and to recover the recurring costs of providing portability. When applying for LNP surcharge authority, the local companies must prove that all fees relate directly to provision of LNP.