Williams Powell

British and European Patent and Trade Mark Attorneys

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EU - Spanish and Italian Challenge to Unitary Patent should be rejected says Advocate General

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The EU's Advocate General Bot proposes today (11 December 2012) that the Court should dismiss actions brought by Spain and Italy against the Council’s decision authorising enhanced cooperation in the area of the unitary patent

In 2011, agreement could not be reached over the languages to be used for the unitary patent (also known as the community patent).  Spain and Italy were unable to reach a compromise with other states (who had agreed on English, French or German). The Council authorised enhanced cooperation between 25 of the 27 EU Member States – Spain and Italy having refused to participate – with a view to creating unitary patent protection. The aim of that cooperation is to set up centralised EU-wide authorisation, coordination and supervision arrangements.

Spain and Italy have asked the Court of Justice to annul the Council’s decision, maintaining that it is invalid for a number of reasons.

In his Opinion delivered today, Advocate General Bot replies to the arguments put forward by Spain and Italy, suggesting to the Court that they reject the requests on all points.

The Courts decision is not expected until 2013.  The Advocate General's opinion will give some comfort to the European Parliament who are today voting on the text to implement the Unified Patent Court which would decide on validity and infringement issues on unified patents.

The press release and the Advocate General's opinion can be found at Press release and Opinion

Tagged in: community patent EU
Jonathan is a British and European Patent Attorney. He studied Cybernetics with Computer Science at Reading University. He is also a Chartered IT Professional and is a member of the BCS, the Chartered Institute for IT. He is active in promoting IP awareness in IT companies and spends much of his time dealing with both IP for IT and technical IT issues.