The Unified Patent Court and Unitary Patent provides a new system for litigating patents in Europe and a new type of European patent. It's the realisation of an ambition to unify European patents that dates back almost 50 years, we’re excited it’s now going to happen!

The unitary patent system realises and ambition that dates back to 1975, when legislation was drawn up to provide a single patent covering all member states of the then European Economic Community (the forerunner of the EU). That legislation never entered force. Now, 48 years later, new legislation providing for a European Patent with Unitary Effect (also known as the Unitary Patent or "UP") and its associated court system, the “UPC”, is set to enter force in early 2023. 

When the unitary patent becomes available, it will cover at least seventeen EU states including Germany, France, Italy, the Netherlands, Belgium, Austria and Sweden with a single, indivisible patent. Applicants will be able to obtain a Unitary patent once their European patent application has been examined and granted by the EPO. A unitary patent will be available to applicants with European patent applications that are currently pending, provided that the eventual grant date falls after the UPC/UP legislative package enters force (likely in the first half of 2023).

Unitary patents will be enforced and litigated at the newly created Unified Patent Court (UPC), which will have ‘central divisions’ in Paris and Munich, and an appeals court in Luxembourg. In fact, the jurisdiction of the UPC will also extend to ‘conventional’ European patents that have been ‘validated’ in one or more participating EU states. However, patentees will be able to “opt-out” their conventional European patents from the jurisdiction of the UPC during a transitional period, which will last for the first seven years of the court’s existence, at least.

As soon as the UPC/UP system becomes available, Mewburn Ellis will be able to obtain unitary patents for our clients and manage the process of opting out their conventional European patents from the jurisdiction of the UPC, if this is desired. We can also handle litigation at the UPC.

Contact Us to Discuss the Unitary Patent & UPC

Validations Costs Estimator Mock-Up-1

 

VALIDATION COST ESTIMATOR TOOL

Easily compare validation routes

We know that it can be challenging to understand whether using the Unitary Patent is the right approach for your business, so we created a Validation Cost Estimator Tool to help you calculate costs for each route. 

Our tool enables you to quickly and easily calculate whether National Validations only or a combination of the Unitary Patent and National Validations is the best option. You can also look at both upfront and ongoing costs to make an informed business decision.

The tool is simple to use, you don't need dates or patent numbers to get results and you can quickly and easily compare both routes side by side and quickly adjust your variables. You can also download your results in a pdf to refer to offline when you need to.

Open cost estimator tool   User guide

Read our Unitary Patent & Unified Patent Court blogs

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THE IMPACT FOR RIGHTS HOLDERS

This is a significant change that has different implications depending on business goals as well as your sector and size of business.

Find out more detail about the unitary patent and UPC with our detailed law and practice guide. This covers a summary overview of both the unitary patent and UPC as well as details around costs and processes to obtain a unitary patent and a comparison of pros and cons.

You can also find out more about the Unified Patent Court, what will be litigated, where the court will be situated, opt out processes and pros and cons of the UPC.

Read Our Guide to the Unitary Patent & UPC
HubSpot Video

 

Forward: On Demand Vlog

Unitary Patent Overview

Eliot Ward gives us a 10 minute overview of the Unitary Patent Package, including what the system is, why we are excited about it, how to obtain it (when it becomes available), and when it is expected to become available.

Click the links below to jump to the corresponding parts of this vlog.

  • 0:00 Intro
  • 0:57 What is this new system?
  • 5:06 Why choose a Unitary Patent?
  • 7:16 How to get a Unitary Patent?
  • 8:06 What countries will it cover?
  • 9:10 When will it be available?
  • 9:56 Outro

 

Talk to our Unitary Patent & Unified Patent Court specialists

JULIE CARLISLE-2

Partner, European Patent Attorney

Richard Clegg Feb-21

Partner, Patent Attorney

Caroline Hart Feb-21

Senior Associate, Solicitor, Litigator

Sean Jauss New

Partner, Solicitor, Litigator

Matthew Naylor

Partner, Patent Attorney           

Eliot Ward Feb-21

Partner, Patent Attorney       

Thomas W

Partner, Patent Attorney           

JONATHAN WILLS

Partner, Patent Attorney           

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FORWARD MAGAZINE

Mewburn Ellis Forward is a biannual publication that celebrates the best of innovation and exploration. Through its pages we hope to inform and entertain, but also to encourage discussion about the most compelling developments taking place in the scientific and entrepreneurial world. Along the way, we’ll engage with the IP challenges that international organisations face every day.

 

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