In 2013, a number of European countries signed the Unified Patent Court Agreement to establish the Unified Patent Court (the "UPC"). Having been under preparation since then, it remains uncertain when the UPC will come into force.

The UPC will mean major changes for patent holders and technology intensive businesses. As a result of the UPC Agreement, a great number of patent cases will have to be brought before the divisions of the UPC instead of the ordinary national courts. At the same time, a European patent with unitary effect will be introduced, meaning a patent with uniform effect throughout the European Union, except for Poland, Spain, and Croatia.

The UPC was originally supposed to be up and running already in 2017, but the project has been delayed due to an action before the German Federal Constitutional Court questioning the compatibility of the UPC system with the German Constitution. Germany has therefore postponed ratification of the UPC Agreement, and German ratification is required for the UPC Agreement to enter into force.

On this feature page, you can keep yourself up to date and find information about the UPC.


UPC - Unitary Patent Court