UPC Preparatory Committee Announce Timetable
19 August 2021
With the recent announcement that German President has approved the UPC (Unified Patent Court) agreement, the UPC preparatory committee has announced estimated timings for the start of UPC operations. The committee has indicated that it currently expects the UPC to commence operations around mid-2022.
Before the UPC becomes fully operational it will first enter a “provisional application phase” which is expected to last for around eight months. The provisional application phase will provide the court with the legal capacity to complete all necessary organizational steps including the recruitments of judges. In order for this provisional phase to start two further EU countries are required to ratify the protocol on the provisional application of the UPC Agreement. The preparatory committee expect these additional approvals to be in place before December this year.
The UPC will allow companies and inventors to protect their inventions in at least 16 EU countries in a single court action. The court coming into operation will also 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.