DLA Piper: Paris: The Unified Patent Court - A victory all round?

DLA Piper: Paris: The Unified Patent Court - A victory all round?

By Claire Bennett  and Philippa Montgomerie 

After days of negotiations between participating member states, a solution to the controversial issue of the location of the Central Division of the Court of First Instance of the Unified Patent Court (UPC) was found. Previously, all EU member states except Italy and Spain had agreed, in principle, to the system subject to a decision of the location of the Central Division being made.

As part of the final deal, the Central Division of UPC will be located in Paris. To maintain high quality standards, 'sector clusters' will be created in London and Munich, the two close runners for the location of the UPC. London will deal with pharmaceuticals, biotech, chemical and metallurgical patents and Munich mechanical engineering, lighting and heating. This decision to spread the Court's functions between three of the key current enforcement jurisdictions is a politic solution and recognition of a European approach. 

Industry experts and business leaders have championed the outcome to the agreement. The reform allows applicants to litigate a 'European patent' in a single court instead of the current system whereby they must enforce or challenge a bundle of national European patents in individual member states. 

It is suggested that creating a lower-cost European enforcement forum is one of several reforms that could aid innovation and economic growth across the region. The European Commission has calculated that, with the single court, litigation expenses incurred by European companies could be reduced by about €289 million a year.

This information is intended as a general overview and discussion of the subjects dealt with. The information provided here was accurate as of the day it was posted; however, the law may have changed since that date. This information is not intended to be, and should not be used as, a substitute for taking legal advice in any specific situation. DLA Piper is not responsible for any actions taken or not taken on the basis of this information. Please refer to the full terms and conditions on our website. 

Copyright © 2012 DLA Piper. All rights reserved.

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