Some End-of-Year Observation on the EU Patent and the EU Patent Court

After the EU Competitiveness Council Meeting of December 2010 (see video of debate), which was celebrated as "the breakthrough after 40 years" (see earlier posting), the EU Commission now tabled its legislative proposal for enhanced cooperation to create EU-wide patent protection (press release), which is supported by at least 12 EU member states - the 11 undersigners of the two supporting letters (here and there) to the Commission shortly before the latest Competitive Council meeting, plus Poland. This proposal needs to be approved by the EU's Council of Ministers by qualified majority, after the consent of the European Parliament. The proposal promotes to use enhanced cooperation to adopt the language regime of the EPO (Art. 14 EPC), according to which the EU patent would be examined and granted (by the EPO) in English, French or German. EU applicants whose language was not English, French or German would have the option to file applications in any other EU official language, whereas the costs for translation into one of the official languages would be eligible for compensation. Particularly, participating EU Member states would enjoy the following arrangements as to the patent procedure and effect: the EU patent should co-exist with national and European patents as a specific category of the known EP patent, granted by the EPO, designating the EU Member States participating in enhanced cooperation on unitary basis. until the moment of grant, applicants would have the choice between an EU patent valid in the territories of the participating EU Member States; an EP patent designating selected EPC Contracting States; an EU patent and an EP patent designating other EPC Contracting States; the EU patent should be of autonomous nature, provide equal protection throughout the participating EU Member States and may only be granted, transferred, revoked or lapse in those EU Member States as a whole ...Zum vollständigen Artikel


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