A new patent system - what does that mean for you as patent proprietor? Must patents be transferred into the new system? What should you do if the previous system was ideal for your own patent? Can the patent now be attacked by your competition? Many questions go hand in hand with the UPC and these require individual, often case-by-case, answers.
Companies must therefore adapt their strategies for filing and enforcing patents as necessary. They have the choice between the classical European Patent, national patents and the new unitary patent (patent with unitary effect) each of which bringing their own advantages and disadvantages.The following points should be taken into consideration:
"The UPC creates a new market for legal disputes in Europe. In this market the opportunities for innovative companies are very attractive: the potential claims for compensatory damages are significantly higher than in individual countries, furthermore the distribution of an infringing product can be prohibited for all participating countries at the UPC. With 17 member states participating in the UPC from June 2023, this corresponds to a market of 400 million consumers.”
Florian Meyer, Dipl.-Ing. (Information science-Engineering), Partner at Meissner Bolte, licensed representative before the European Patent Office and the European Union Intellectual Property Office (EUIPO)
The UPC system offers patent proprietors significant advantages but there are also risks which must be fully understood. There will be many cases where avoidance of the UPC is a better option, instead using the traditional route through the national courts. We recommend weighing up the advantages and disadvantages of the new system for each patent in your portfolio and then deciding on the best route and whether the opt-out makes sense. If you would like advice on the opportunities and risks of the new system, please contact us. We stand ready to assist you developing the perfect and personalised strategy.