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

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, the new European Patent with Unitary Effect (also known as the Unitary Patent or "UP") and its associated court system, the “UPC”, became a reality on 1 June 2023. 

Initially, Unitary Patents will cover at seventeen EU states including Germany, France, Italy, the Netherlands, Belgium, Austria and Sweden with a single, indivisible patent.  Applicants can now obtain a Unitary patent once their European patent application has been examined and granted by the EPO. A unitary patent is available provided that the EP grant date falls after the UPC/UP legislative package entered force on 1 June 2023.

Unitary patents are enforced and litigated at the newly created Unified Patent Court (UPC), which will have ‘central divisions’ in Paris, Munich (and later, Milan), and an appeals court in Luxembourg. In fact, the jurisdiction of the UPC also extends to ‘conventional’ European patents that have been ‘validated’ in one or more participating EU states. However, patentees can “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.

Now that the UPC/UP system is available, Mewburn Ellis can obtain unitary patents for our clients, manage the process of opting out their conventional European patents from the jurisdiction of the UPC (if this is desired) and handle litigation at the UPC.

Contact Us to Discuss the Unitary Patent & UPC

Validations Costs Estimator Mock-Up-1



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.

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Tool user guide

Read our Unitary Patent & Unified Patent Court blogs

Learn More
Guide to the Unitary Patent and Unified Patent Court


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 Unified Patent Court with our detailed guide. This covers a summary overview of both as well as details around costs and processes to obtain a unitary patent and a comparison of pros and cons.

Download here
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


Partner, European Patent Attorney

Richard Clegg

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 Wolter

Partner, Patent Attorney           


Partner, Patent Attorney           

Forward Magazines Overlapping 8

Mewburn Ellis


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.