On 10 February, Italy presented to the Council of the EU its instrument for ratifying the Convention on the Unified Patent Jurisdiction (UPCA). Italy is the twelfth state to have ratified the UPCA (for more details on other ratifications, click here in the UPCA section of our Unified Patent Court (UPC) and Unitary Patent (UP) Hub). For the UPCA to enter into force, at least 13 States Parties must ratify, three of which are specific: France, Germany and the United Kingdom. France has already ratified. The United Kingdom has announced that it will ratify (see below) and Germany is expected to stick to It in August, so that the four-month insertion period, which will apply as soon as sufficient ratification takes place, can begin in time to allow a launch date of 1 December 2017 for them (according to Article 89 of the UPCA, the agreement will enter the first day of the fourth month after the date of the thirteenth ratification instrument). The result of the constitutional procedure against Germany`s ratification of the UPCA, which was due to be decided in 2019, has not yet been concluded. In a recent interview, Justice Huber of the Federal Constitutional Court (who is due to rule) denied that the delay was related to Brexit, but that other important cases were awaiting their decision and were a priority. He suggested that the case could be decided in early 2020. It is generally accepted that the German court will probably dismiss the opponent`s case, but it is only when it is established that the German government can make a decision on the ratification of the UPCA.

There are signs that all administrative preparations for ratification are pending, but the issue of Brexit is also crucial, at least from the government`s point of view. In July 2019, in response to a brief question, the federal government said the consequences of Brexit were not yet known (delaying ratification), but also reaffirmed the current federal government`s commitment to the unitary patent project and the UPC. In February 2012, EU countries and the European Parliament agreed on the “patent package” – a legislative initiative comprising two regulations and an international agreement that lays the groundwork for the creation of unitary patent protection in the EU. German ratification depends on the outcome of the Federal Constitutional Court`s (BGH) appeal on the constitutionality of the UPC implementation law adopted by the German Bundestag.

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