Commentary and guidance

Unified Patent Court: The slightly surprising limits of its jurisdiction

The jurisdiction of the Unified Patent Court, within its area of competence, is somewhat broader than might be expected. Complexity arises due to the manner in which amendment of the Brussels Regulation brings the Unified Patent Court into the wider European context and the interplay between the Brussels regulation with the Lugano agreement. 

News from the German Federal Constitutional Court on the challenge to the UPC system

The German Federal Constitutional Court (FCC) has provided the following further information on the challenge to the UPC system brought in June by an unnamed private individual.

UK approves provisional application of the UPC

The UK has deposited with the EU Council the document required to apply the Protocol to the Agreement on a Unified Patent Court (UPC) on provisional application​.

UK takes the final legislative step needed to ratify the UPC

The draft Statutory Instrument, the Order on Privileges and Immunities, which needs to be passed before UK ratification of the Unified Patents Court (UPC) can take place, was laid before Parliament on 26 June 2017.​

Playing roulette with the Unified Patent Court judges

This article considers the appointment of Unified Patent Court (UPC) judges and the composition of the panels of judges in local divisions of the UPC. It explains why local divisions may initially comprise a significant proportion of English, French and German judges.

The Economics of Unitary Patents

Obtaining a European Patent with Unitary Effect will become an option for patentees prosecuting patent applications before the European Patent Office at the same time as the UPC opens its doors for business.

The UPC and Patent Trolls

With the ascendency of Patent Trolls in the US, it is perhaps not surprising that some have been concerned whether the UPC will prove an attractive place for Patent Trolls to take up residence.

Jurisdiction and the Unified Patent Court

When the UPC opens, it will become the second so-called "common court" in the European Union, after the Benelux Court of Justice. Not strictly EU courts themselves, these courts have a recognised position in EU law, and have the ability to refer questions to the Court of Justice of the European Union. Currently 25 EU member states are expected to join the UPC.

Costs and fees at the UPC

This article looks at the Unified Patent Court (UPC) Rules on recoverable costs and court fees. It considers how the UPC's court fees compare to those applicable in national courts and looks at the interplay between the UPC's rules on recoverable costs and court fees.

Unified Patent Court now expected to open in early 2018

The UK general election on 08 June 2017 may delay the UK's ratification of the UPC Agreement but it is not expected to delay the launch of the Unified Patent Court by more than a month or so.

New version of the Rules of Procedure 

On 10 April 2017 the Preparatory Committee for the Unified Patent Court published a new version of the draft Rules of Procedure. Although the final version of the Rules will be based on this document, it is still subject to possible change and the scrutiny of the European Commission on the compatibility of the Rules with European Union law.

Preparatory Committee announces timetable for UPC to come into force

On 16 January 2017 the Preparatory Committee announced a new provisional timetable for the Unified Patent Court (UPC) to come into force.

The UK has ratified the UPC Protocol on Privileges and Immunities

UK Government takes next step towards UPC Agreement ratification

Simmons & Simmons blog - UPC Agreement to be ratified by the UK - 28 November 2016

Simmons & Simmons Breaking down Brexit: a blog - The UPC Agreement is to be ratified by the UK notwithstanding Brexit​

Can "hard" and "soft" Brexit co-exist?

Rowan Freeland considers the potential impact of Brexit on the UPC - can the UK still play a role?

Brexit: the implications for the UPC and the Unitary Patent

What has the Referendum Vote done to the UPC?​

New draft Patents Order brings UPC system another step closer

The UK Government has published draft implementing legislation which is needed for the UPC and Unitary Patent system to come into effect.​

The UPC and licensing

What do licensors and licensees need to do to prepare their agreements for the arrival of the UPC and the Unitary Patent?​

The Unitary Patent - who is it for?

The European Patent with Unitary Effect (Unitary Patent) will become an option for patentees with the coming of the Unified Patent Court (the UPC). A Unitary Patent will provide protection for a patentee in at least 13 EU Member States including the major patenting jurisdictions of the UK, Germany, France, Italy and the Netherlands.

Spain's challenge to the Unitary Patent and Languages Regulations

Spain has been unsuccessful in its challenge to the Unitary Patent and Languages Regulations. With the Regulations having been upheld on all counts, the new UPC package, including the unitary patent and the language regime, comes one step closer.

Opting-out: taking steps now

It is expected that the Unified Patent Court will open for business in early 2018. Proprietors of European “bundle” patents, applicants for such patents, SPC holders and licensees, as well as parties to research/collaboration/joint venture agreements involving such rights, will need to consider NOW how they will engage with the new court and, in particular, whether and to what extent they will opt out their European patents and applications and SPCs.

Italy prepares to join the Unitary Patent

Italy is preparing to join the Unitary Patent​, having previously expressed scepticism.

The Unified Patents Court – an insider’s view

Kevin Mooney, for many years on the European Commission’s Expert Panel, and more recently Chairman of the Drafting Committee responsible for the Court’s Rules of Procedure, gives a personal view of the new Unified Patents Court.

Unifying patent litigation

With final agreement on the UPLS set for June 2012 by the European Council, what are the implications of the patent package?

European patent litigation - structure and developments 

Progress towards a unified patent system in Europe is moving fast, but for the time being the complex differences in national patent regimes persist.  This article examines those differences and the implications for those starting or defending a patent infringement claim.

European patent harmonisation - wishful thinking?

This article looks at attempts by EU national courts to harmonise their approach to procedure and substantive law in the field of patent law.

European patent litigation: the Gordian knot

The European patent system is complicated, expensive and illogical. This article aims to unpick some of the mystery for those seeking to litigate within it.

This document (and any information accessed through links in this document) is provided for information purposes only and does not constitute legal advice. Professional legal advice should be obtained before taking or refraining from any action as a result of the contents of this document.