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The Unitary Patent and the UPC – CIPA seminar 19th November 2013

cipalogoYesterday I had the pleasure of speaking at the CIPA seminar “The Unitary Patent and the UPC” with Alan Johnson of Bristows LLP and Tim Roberts. A copy of the slides for my section of the talk is enclosed below along with some links to additional information covered in the talk (the Poland Deloitte report and some views on the impact of the Scottish Referendum).


The unitary patent, an opt-out and a referral to the European Court of Human Rights

EU flagCould the proposed unitary patent system result in a referral to the European Court of Human Rights? Bear with me for a second while we fire up the flux capacitor and travel back in time.

It’s now 26 June 2007. Rihanna and Jay-Z are riding high in the charts with Umbrella and it’s a Tuesday. One of your clients comes to discuss the filing of their new patent application in Europe. After explaining the European patent process to your client and lamenting the fact that there’s no way of getting a single patent that covers Europe in some sort of unitary sense, your client instructs you to file a new EP patent application. Being the hyper-efficient patent attorney that you are you get the case on file later that day and settle back to a few months of discussion with the Examiner before the inevitable grant.

Time to jump back in the Delorean and fast forward 9 (!) years.


IP Hit or Miss? Software Patents in Europe

code_invertedIn a recent article in the Guardian regarding President Obama’s plans to curb the perceived abuse of the patent system by non-practising entities (also known as patent trolls), the author points out that none of the recommendations involve a ban on software patent in the US, stating that:

“Nowhere in the administration’s recommendations is one that already applies in Europe: an outright ban on software patents…”

But is there such an “outright ban” on “software patents” (computer-implemented inventions) in Europe?