Unified jurisdiction or JUB

Presentation of the JUB

Principle

In parallel with the unitary effect of patents, some EU Member States have decided to create a unified jurisdiction of the European patent "(Or JUB) in order to centralize the patent litigation at European level.

This decision was formalized in the Agreement on the Unified Patent Court or AJUB, signed in February 2013.

Why the JUB?

Previously at the JUB, the national courts of these States were the only ones competent to decide disputes relating to the infringement and validity of European patents (or at least the respective national parts of European patents).

From then on, it was quite possible to have divergent decisions within the Union itself:

  • a French court annuls the French part of a European patent;
  • while an English court considers that the English part of the same European patent is valid.

From a logic point of view, this is quite disturbing.

The Agreement on the Unified Patent Court seeks to avoid this problem by proposing a specialized court with exclusive jurisdiction to settle related disputes:

  • European patents, and
  • European patents with unitary effect (or unitary patents).

Entry into force of the JUB

The agreement on the UPC was signed on February 19, 2013 by 25 Member States of the European Union.

However, this does not mean that it has yet entered into force (see Article 89 of theAgreement on the Unified Patent Court).

This agreement must be ratified by at least thirteen states, including the three states in which the highest number of European patents were in force in 2012 (seeAgreement on the Unified Patent Court), that is to say :

  • Germany
  • France and
  • the United Kingdom (as long as there is no Brexit - otherwise it will be Italy).

Thus, this agreement will come into effect on the first day of the 4th month following the latest event among:

  • the deposit of the thirteenth instrument of ratification (see below);
  • the modification of the EU Regulation 2012/1215 to include a derogation from the exclusive jurisdiction of national patent courts (see Article 24.3 of EU Regulation 2012/1215).

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