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As noted in an earlier post, the unitary patent and unified patent court in Europe was a hot topic of conversation at the IP Summit in Brussels recently. However, the unitary patent package was not the only major law change discussed and on 7 December 2012 I attended an informative session on “Filing Scenarios Before and After March 16, 2013” in relation to the America Invents Act (AIA).
This session was chaired by Eric Raciti from Finnegan with Malcolm T Meeks (Infineon Technologies AG) and Prof. Herb Munsterman (IIT Chicago-Kent College of Law) on the panel. The session focused on changes to the scope of prior art under AIA and also covered changes to the US grace period and new post-grant procedures that will be available to challenge granted US patents.
Last week the pan-European Intellectual Property Summit (IP Summit) was held in Brussels and the first morning of the summit saw a number of discussions regarding the unitary patent and unified patent court. A common theme that seemed to crop up from anyone representing the official EU position was that the proposed unitary patent protection (UPP) package isn’t perfect but it’ll do! Hmm.
The opening keynote introduction was from Kerstin Jorna from the European Commission (Director, Intellectual Property – Internal Market & Services DG) who likened the UPP package to a cake that doesn’t look like the picture in the recipe book when you remove it from the oven. According to Ms Jorna in such circumstances we should ask ourselves whether the cake is fit to be served to our family! Apparently the UPP cake is fit to be eaten. Please insert your own joke here about too many cooks in the kitchen….