Insights | October 13, 2022

Unified Patent Court expected to launch on 1 April 2023

According to recent news published on the official website for the Unified Patent Court (UPC), the UPC preparatory team has shared its implementation roadmap based on which the UPC Agreement is now expected to enter into force.

On 1 April 2023, the UPC is expected to open its doors and inaugurate its adjudicatory functions. This also means that the sunrise period for opt-out notifications of European patents and supplementary protection certificates is expected to commence on 1 January 2023.

What does this news entail?

This comes as exciting news to all those who have long been waiting for concrete actions establishing the new unitary patent and the reformed enforcement options for unitary and European patents as well as supplementary protection certificates. The reform calls for patentees to strategically evaluate their current portfolios.

It should be noted that the reform will not affect national patents, only European patents and supplementary protection certificates. To help with strategic evaluations, please refer to our previous commentaries on the reforms and their implications:

Key takeaways:

  • Assess the benefits and risks associated with unitary patents and the reformed enforcement options
  • Evaluate the impact of the UPC on the current patent portfolio and identify strategic opt-outs of European patents and supplementary protection certificates
  • Notify all opt-outs, preferably during the sunrise period, to prevent third parties from gaining the upper hand on these decisions

Should you have any questions, our experts are happy to answer.

Article written by Partners Johanna Lilja, Rainer Hilli and Mikael Segercrantz and Associate Miko Leach.