EPO publishes data on unitary patents


The EPO reported in First Unitary Patents on their way to publication that by 31 May it had received 800 requests for unitary effect and of these 600 will be published as granted in the next edition of the European Patent Bulletin. These requests were made under a provisional measure introduced by the EPO under which, from 1 January to 31 May, an applicant for a European patent (who had received a Rule 71(3) EPC-communication) could file an early request for unitary effect, so that a unitary patent would be granted immediately on 1 June. Under another provisional measure (also from 1 January to 31 May) the applicant for a European patent coming to grant shortly before 1 June could request that the issue of a decision to grant a European patent be delayed until 1 June so they did not miss the opportunity to obtain a unitary patent, and they would then have one month from 1 June to request unitary effect. The EPO has reported that by 31 May it had received 4,500 requests for deferred publication of the grant of the European patent (and therefore those patents are now eligible for requesting unitary effect).

Gregory Bacon


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