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The Unified Patent Court and the Unitary Patent

Navigating the new EU patent system

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Private challenge to the UPC system made before German Constitutional Court delays progress of German UPCA ratification

15 June 2017

On 7 June, the UPC Preparatory Committee announced that the December start date could no longer be maintained. The Preparatory Committee says that it is monitoring UPCA ratification and participation in the Protocol continuously in order to be able to establish a timetable for a start date as soon as possible. Since that announcement, German press articles suggest that there has been a private challenge before the German Constitutional Courts concerning the UPC System in light of which the Court has requested that the approved bills are not signed, such that ratification by Germany cannot be completed. The nature of this challenge, and therefore the length of any delay it may cause, is currently unclear.

The Unified Patent Court (UPC) and the Unitary Patent (UP)

Plans for a 1 December 2017 start date for the UPC (and UP) may now be in doubt if the UK general election delays the UK's ratification of the UPC Agreement. A 2018 start date appears more probable, barring any delay by Germany which must also ratify.

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