Just in time for Children's Day, the dreams of many adult inventors came true!
From 1 June 2023 they will no longer have to apply for a patent for their invention in each European country separately but can obtain one patent for the whole of Europe. What's more, they can bring infringement claims against their existing "classic" European and new "Unitary" Patents before a single, specialised court.
The Unified Patent Court Agreement is coming into force today, and although the Czech Republic is waiting to ratify it, it will also affect Czech inventors and research organisations based in the Czech Republic. Not only can they apply for the European Unitary Patent with effects in 17 European countries where ratification has already taken place (e.g. Germany, France,Italy), but they no longer have to litigate their patent rights in parallel before several institutions.
The Unitary Patent system also has a number of disadvantages. For example, it does not allow the patent to be abandoned in countries where it has not met commercial expectations and where the payment of annuities has become unreasonable, and the possibility of geographically limiting the effects of the transfer of the patent is removed. These and other pros and cons will need to be considered when planning a patent strategy.
By Hana Cislerova, Associate, JSK Law firm, PONTES