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Clifford Chance

Clifford Chance


Global Intellectual Property Newsletter Issue 12/15

7 December 2015

Status quo of the UPC ratification process and likeli-hood of entering into force

The article provides a brief overview on the ratification process of the Unitary Patent Court Agreement and describes the recent developments and latest decisions within the signa-tory Member States with regards to the establishment of the Unitary Patent and the Unified Patent Court (UPC).

Legal framework of the UPC

The legal framework of the UPC has required numerous Regulations, decisions and agreements. Each of these legal tools is dependent on the others and a system of Unitary Patent protection can only be established once they have all entered into force.

Language and translation Regulations

Language is a major concern for all private operators who seek to protect their patent with-in the European market. Thus, the aim of the Regulations and case law on the European patent with unitary effect is to provide a single patent and a single court for litigation, with common translation Regulations.

Structure and Competence of the UPC

The establishment of the UPC is a milestone for patent protection at the European level. The UPC will be an entirely new court structure with exclusive jurisdiction for patent litiga-tion relating not only to European patents with unitary effect, but also to traditional Europe-an patents currently granted by the European Patent Office.

The UPC Influence on/Relation to National Jurisdictions

National courts remain competent for actions relating to national patents and supplemen-tary protection of certificates that do not fall within the exclusive competence of the UPC. This latter is meant to replace the individual national courts of the contracting Member States as the forum for disputes falling within its exclusive competence.

Block some time in your calendar in 2016 to make a de-cision on your opt-out strategy!

As the European Unified Patent Court system may come into force as early as 2017 rights holders should prepare for the onset of the new regime now

Views of non-contracting Member states on current UPC regime: The Spanish Perspective

Even if Spain remains outside the UPC system, Spanish companies could potentially be-come parties to judicial proceedings brought before the UPC in some circumstances.

Sources of Law and Substantive Patent Law

The Unified Patent Court is entitled to base its decisions on several sources of Law, Article 24 of the UPC Agreement sets out the sources of law to be applied by the court hearing case based on the UPC Agreement

Procedural Characteristics of trials before the Unified Patent Court

As the European Unified Patent Court system may come into force as early as 2017 rights holders should prepare for the onset of the new regime now. The rules of procedure repre-sent a balanced mixture of concepts from a variety of national regimes and provide a uni-fied set of rules for a complex patent litigation.



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