German court paves the way for UPC ratification


On Friday 9 July 2021, the German Federal Constitutional Court dismissed two interim injunction applications, which have been delaying progress of Germany’s participation in the Unified Patent Court. The German Parliament (Bundestag) had adopted the Act of Approval enabling ratification of the Unified Patent Court (UPC) Agreement and its Protocol on Provisional Application on 18 December 2020, but the two constitutional complaints were filed on 20 December 2020 preventing the final ratifications steps being taken.

Despite the cases not being listed as ‘important cases for 2021’(when previous constitutional complaints had been listed), the court ruled on Friday that the complaints were inadmissible, reasoning that the complainants had failed to ‘sufficiently assert and substantiate a possible violation of their fundamental rights’.

With this obstacle overcome, it is understood that Germany can now resume the procedure for deposit of its instrument of ratification for the Unified Patent Court. A further two signatories must also agree to be bound by the Protocol on Provisional Application. Upon completion of all these steps, the Provisional Phase of the Unified Patent Court can begin, in respect of which the Preparatory Committee for the Unified Patent Court intends to publish further details and a timeline for action in due course.

Myles Jelf


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