Monday, 25 January 2016

United Kingdom publishes draft legislation for Unitary Patent law

Spring in London

The UK government has published draft legislation to amend the UK Patents Act. The changes allow the unitary patent and unified patent court in the united kingdom. The order, which has the longish citation title " Patents (European Patent with Unitary Effect and Unified Patent Court) Order 2016", is laid before Parliament for approval by resolution of each House of Parliament.

The legislation has the form of a 'Statutory Instrument' . According to IPKat approval for a Statutory Instrument is usually quite quick. Once the order has been approved the UK can ratify the Agreement on a Unified patent court. I'm told that the planning is for the legislation to be completed by spring 2016.

The government also published a response to the a consultation on the unitary patent. The response is published here.

Photo "Spring in London" by DncnH via Flickr under a CC-By license.

Thursday, 21 January 2016

Finland ratifies Unitary Patent

Finnish Parliament

Finland has fully ratified the 'Agreement on a Unified Patent Court' by depositing its instrument of ratification. By ratifying the agreement it will be possible to get protection for an invention through a unitary patent in Finland together with all other countries that have ratified the unitary patent. Moreover, the unified patent court will have jurisdiction to decide over both unitary patents but also 'classic' European patents that have been validated for Finland (unless opted-out).

The website of the Finish parliament shows two acts that are related to the Finish ratification, both from January 13, 2016.

Laki patenttilain muuttamisesta, 13.1.2016

22/2016 Suomeksi På svenska
Laki yhdistetystä patenttituomioistuimesta tehdyn sopimuksen lainsäädännön alaan kuuluvien määräysten voimaansaattamisesta ja sopimuksen soveltamisesta , 13.1.2016

According to Google Translate these are an  'Act amending the Patents Act' and a 'Law on the unified patent court bringing into force the provisions pertaining to the law of the agreement and the application of the Agreement'. If Google Translate does not deceive me then the latter allows Finland to also sign the
Protocol on provisional application of the Unified Patent Court Agreement; Finland has not yet done so.

The full list of countries that have currently ratified the agreement is: Austria, Belgium, Denmark, France, Luxembourg, Malta, Portugal, Sweden, and Finland. Including the mandatory countries United Kingdom and Germany, we are now two countries short of the set of 13 countries required for the unitary patent system to start.

I haven't seen heard if Finland has decided to have a local unified patent court.

 Photo "Kyösti Kallio and Parliament House of Finland" by Tomi Lattu via Flickr, under CC-BY-2.0 license