Thursday, 12 November 2015

Finland taking steps towards ratification--contours of the first 13 becoming visible?

Helsinki Cathedral

A unitary patent working group of the Finnish government has recommended that Finland's Parliament ratify the Agreement on a Unified Patent Court.

At present 8 states have fully ratified the agreement: Austria, Belgium, Denmark, France, Luxembourg, Malta, Portugal, and Sweden. At least 13 countries are required before the unitary patent takes effect, but ratification is expected from at least 5 more countries, e.g.: The Netherlands, the United Kingdom, Germany, Italy, and Hungary. Perhaps, we may now also add Finland to the list of countries likely to ratify in the near future.  This means we are getting a better and better idea what the first list of participating member states might look like.

The Finish working group also made a proposal on amendments of the Finish patent law. Presumably, Finland will handle the ratification and amendment together, e.g., as is also being done now in the Netherlands.

The news did not include confirmation that Finland will not participate in the Nordic-Baltic regional division of the UPC. Last year, the Nordic-Baltic regional division was announced with Sweden, Lithuania, Latvia, and Estonia. According to the Finnish patent office, Finland is considering to set up a local division of its own, which would allow local patent disputes to be litigated in Finland rather than in Stockholm (Sweden).

The official report is here, which includes a brief English summary. English commentary from a Finish attorney can be found here.

Photo "Tuomiokirkko HDR" by Guyon MorĂ©e obtained via Flickr  under a  CC-By license

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