EPO met UPC governing bodies’ representatives

4 July 2022

The EPO President and Vice-Presidents met with the Chairs and Vice-chairs of the governing bodies of the Unified Patent Court, leaders of the working groups responsible for different areas related to the implementation of the Agreement on a Unified Patent Court, as well as the Chair of the Select Committee of the Administrative Council for the Unitary Patent. In their second meeting since the start of the provisional application period on 19 January 2022, participants took stock of key developments since 7 February 2022, and discussed progress made towards the forthcoming launch of the Unitary Patent and of the Unified Patent Court.

Praising the long-standing close co-operation between all partners, EPO President António Campinos stated: "We're now on the homestretch of preparations for the Unitary Patent package, and our solid progress reflects the close co-operation between all partners. It gives me great pleasure to see that we'll soon deliver on the promise to bring about the most important change in the European patent system since the EPO took up its operations in 1977."

Alexander Ramsay, Chair of the Administrative Committee of the Unified Patent Court, underlined that: "The first part of the provisional application period has seen a great deal of effort from all involved. This has led to solid progress and the organisation is now taking shape. We are now looking forward to going the last mile together with partners such as the EPO to finalise this important European project.""

Jérôme Debrulle, Chair of the Select Committee, said: "In October 2021 the Select Committee adopted an ambitious work programme to complete the implementation of Unitary Patent protection. At the outset, we identified four main workstreams: the legal framework, the financial framework, communication, and technical co-operation. By the end of June 2022  the Select Committee had completed its work programme and is now ready for the entry into operation of the Unitary Patent system."

The Unitary Patent and the Unified Patent Court are the building blocks of the Unitary Patent package, which will supplement and strengthen the existing centralised European patent-granting system. Unitary patents will make it possible to obtain uniform patent protection in participating EU member states that have ratified the Agreement on a Unified Patent Court (UPC), by submitting a single request to the EPO, offering patent holders simpler and more cost-effective protection for their inventions.

The UPC will be a common court of the participating member states with jurisdiction for infringement and revocation actions concerning patents granted by the EPO. This specialised court will make the Europe-wide enforcement of patents easier, offer greater legal certainty and reduce costs resulting from litigation in multiple jurisdictions.

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