Germany approves ratification of UPC Agreement
13 August 2021
German President, Frank-Walter Steinmeier, has now approved the UPC (Unified Patent Court) agreement. This constitutes the final step for the UPC agreement to be brought into German law.
The UPC will allow companies and inventors to protect their inventions in at least 16 EU countries in a single court action should the system be implemented. The court coming into operation will complete the so called “Unitary Patent Package” which will allow for a single Unitary EU Patent, simplifying the patent granting process for much of Europe.
Before the UPC becomes fully operational it will first enter a “provisional application phase” which will last for some months. Two more EU states need to agree to the Protocol on that provisional application phase before it can commence. We look forward to an update from the UPC’s preparatory committee regarding the likely timeline for these events to occur. Presently its seems likely that the first Unitary Patents may be granted by 2023 once the UPC is fully up and running.