The Unitary Patent and the Unified Patent Court Are Expected to Go Live in Less than a Year

February.01.2022

The Unitary Patents system – providing for the new Unitary Patent and Unified Patent Court (UPC) – will have a profound impact on patent protection, patent enforcement and patent revocation proceedings in Europe.

The Unitary Patent will enable patentees – for the first time in history – to obtain a single patent covering most EU member states, including all major EU markets. The Unified Patent Court will have exclusive jurisdiction over all matters concerning the validity and infringement of patents granted by the European Patent Office, i.e., not only the new Unitary Patents but also the existing European Patents. The UPC's decisions will have effect in all participating EU member states. As a consequence, even existing European Patents could be enforced or revoked in all of those member states through a single action at the UPC.

Now that the provisional application phase of the UPC Agreement has started, the Unitary Patent and the UPC are expected to go live at the beginning of 2023.

We will guide you through the most important topics and flag potential action items in a series of insights over the next few months. If you have any questions, feel free to reach out to Benedikt Migdal or your usual contact at Orrick.

The Fundamentals of the Unified Patent Court System and the New Unitary Patent

Overview of the status quo of European patent law and the upcoming Unitary Patent and Unified Patent Court: The countries participating, the actions that can be brought before the UPC, the difference between a UPC judgment and a judgment by a national court etc.

The UPC Opt-out for European Patents – Should I Stay or Should I Go?

Proprietors of European Patents will have the opportunity to avoid jurisdiction of the Unified Patent Court by filing so-called opt-out applications during an initial Transitional Period of at least seven years. Here are the key questions about the Opt-out, its requirements and pros & cons.

Licensing, Joint Ownership and the UPC – What to Watch Out For

Not bothering with the upcoming Unitary Patent and Unified Patent Court in your license and other patent-related agreements? Not a good idea, if you want to avoid potentially unpleasant surprises. Here are key issues you should consider in your patent-related agreements already today.