Get informed about the Unified Patent Court:

Most of you will have heard that the start of the Unitary Patent system is imminent. It is expected for the end of this year [2022].

Granted unitary patents can be asserted in all member states with a single complaint, including Germany, France and currently 15 other European countries.

In turn, unitary patents may also be revoked in all member states by a single revocation action at the Unified Patent Court that is currently being set up.

Some stakeholders may say: "Why bother? I will simply ignore the unitary patent and continue using the classical European bundle patent that is dealt with on a national level, as it will still be available in parallel."

However, applicants need to know that the Unified Patent Court will generally be competent for these classical European patents as well.

In fact, for all of them – even those that were granted in the past.

That means all European patents could be revoked in all member states of the Unitary Patent System with a single revocation action.

To avoid this threat, patentees need to actively opt out their European patents of the new system.

And for existing patents such an opt-out can already be requested during the so-called sunrise period of the Unitary Patent System which is expected to start in mid-2022.

So, patentees should consider now how to position their European patent portfolio in view of the new system.

If you want to know more, we are happy to assist!

The content of this article is intended to provide a general guide to the subject matter. Specialist advice should be sought about your specific circumstances.