Update on UPC Progress

21 December 2017

Alexander Ramsay, the Chair of the Preparatory Committee for the Unified Patent Court (UPC) has issued an update regarding the progress of the UPC.  While the tone of the update remains positive, it does acknowledge that the timeline for the opening of the UPC is still uncertain.  This is due to the case currently pending before the German Federal Constitutional Court (as reported here). 

The UK is, however, continuing to progress towards ratification of the UPC agreement.  The Unified Patent Court (Immunities and Privileges) Order 2017 was approved by the UK Parliament on 12 December 2017 and is now awaiting approval by the Privy Council.  The draft Scottish Statutory Instrument relating to devolved aspects of the UPC immunities and privileges has already been approved by the Privy Council.

Elsewhere in Europe, further progress has been made.  The Protocol on Privileges and Immunities (PPI) of the Unified Patent Court (UPC) at present has only been ratified by Netherlands (here).  It seems likely that France will ratify the Protocol in the near future with the French Senate approving a bill authorising ratification of the PPI on 20 December 2017.  The PPI must be ratified by the four countries that will hold the Central Divisions and Court of Appeal of the UPC before the UPC can open its doors.  Those four countries are France, Germany, the UK and Luxembourg. 

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