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Unitary patent – Presentation from LES Meeting

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EU flagOn the 13th June 2013, the Licensing Executives Society of Britain and Ireland held a meeting entitled “Europe’s New Unified Patent Court – for better or for worse?“. The meeting was chaired by the Rt. Hon. Professor Sir Robin Jacob and included a number of distinguished speakers associated with the world of IP: Richard Vary (Head of Litigation at Nokia),  Arnaud Michel (Gide Loyrette Nouel), Alan Johnson (Bristows) and Ian Wood (Charles Russell). Oh, and me (so an 80% distinguished speaking panel then).

The meeting covered a number of aspects of the proposed Unitary Patent system (or “A European Tragedy” as Sir Robin Jacob put it). My presentation is attached below along with a brief overview of my slides.

LES Presentation

The outline for my presentation is as follows:

  • How to get a unitary patent, e.g. where it sits in the current prosecution/validation process
  • “Fudge” image – no idea how that got in there! It, in no way, represents all the “compromises” in the unitary patent package….honest!
  • Territorial coverage
    • Brief (very brief!) recap of regulations/agreement
    • Map based walkthrough of which countries are in and out of the regulations/agreement, leading into
    • Number of countries required to start system/who is out/ who might join
    • Changing territorial coverage
  • Costs
    • Pre-grant/post-grant costs. New fees to consider
    • Available details on fee levels
  • UP versus EP versus national patents
    • UP – Pros and Cons
    • Alternatives to UP – “classical EP patents” or national patents/beware PCT national phase trap
  • Translation language provisions (including a “Have I Got News for You” style look at the translation issue. Which one is the odd one out from: The Tardis’ translation matrix, a Babel fish, a Star Trek universal translator or the “high quality” machine translations referred to in the unitary patent translation regulation. Answers in the comments section below please!)
  • What do I (a patent owner) need to do now?

Speakers’ biographies can be found here.

Mark Richardson   17 June 2013


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