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Recruitment begins for UPC judges

16 May 2016

The recruitment process for selecting the first group of UPC judges is now open. Candidates may apply to become a full-time or part-time judge until the closing date of 4 July 2016. Information on the selection process can be found here. The opening of the selection process marks a major step in the implementation of the UPC.

Those eligible for a position as a legally qualified judge must possess the qualifications required for appointment to judicial offices in their native country, which must be a UPC Contracting Member State. Technically qualified judges must have a university degree and experience in a field of technology as well as knowledge of civil law and patent litigation procedures. To make it beyond the application process, candidates will need a good command of at least one of English, French or German. Experience of patent litigation will also need to be proven, however, training may be provided in lieu of experience.

The recruitment of legal and technical judges remains as one of the final few hurdles to meeting the new Court’s target start date of early 2017. The process is expected to take 7 months to complete, though appointment dates will depend on the date on which the UPC starts operating. Ultimately, the finalisation of the appointment procedure will depend on the entry into force of the Protocol on Provisional Application and the Agreement on the Unified Patent Court. The ratification of the Agreement currently stands at nine countries, with four left to ratify including Germany and the UK.


Denis Keseris & James Mitchell
Electronics, Computing & Physics Group

If you require further information on anything covered in this briefing, please contact James Mitchell ( ; +44 207 940 3600) or your usual contact at the firm.

This publication is a general summary of the law. It should not replace legal advice tailored to your specific circumstances.

© Withers & Rogers LLP, May 2016