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German Parliament votes for UPC

27 November 2020

A two-thirds majority has now been established in the Bundestag for the UPC (Unified Patent Court) Agreement.

As we reported in March the German Constitutional Court ruled that UPC (Unified Patent Court) ratification at that time would be unconstitutional in Germany due to the failure of the Bundestag to secure a two-thirds majority of all Members for the UPC legislation, which should be required as a matter concerning constitutional change. That failure has now been rectified allowing a future German ratification of the UPC agreement to be lawful. For ratification to proceed the legislation also needs to be approved by the Bundesrat (Germany’s upper chamber) and signed by the German President.

German ratification is required for the UPC to go ahead. The Unified Patent Court would allow companies and inventors to protect their inventions in at least 16 EU countries in a single court action should the system be implemented. The court coming into operation would complete the so called “Unitary Patent Package” which would also allow for a single Unitary EU Patent that would simplify the patent granting process for much of Europe.