EU Patent Reform: Federal Republic of Germany deposits the instrument of ratification for the Agreement on a Unified Patent Court (Published on 20/03/2023)

As recently announced by the German Federal government, the instrument of ratification of the Agreement on a Unified Patent Court (“UPCA”) was deposited on Friday, 17/02/2023 with the General Secretariat of the Council of the EU, which acts as depositary (cf. Art. 84(2), sentence 2 UPCA). The ratification by the Federal Republic of Germany is said to be the 17th ratification of the Agreement, which would now enter into force on 01/06/2023 (cf. Art. 89(1) UPCA).

The announced entry into force of the UPCA was published in the Federal Law Gazette on 15/03/2023 (BGBl. 2023 II No. 75 of 15/03/2023).

The UPCA was signed by 25 EU member states on 19/02/2012, whereby its entry into force requires mandatory ratification by the Federal Republic of Germany. The first German Ratification Act  dated 31/03/2017 was nullified in 2020 by the German Federal Constitutional Court (“BVerfG”), in response to my constitutional complaint from the same day (docket no. 2 BvR 739/17). A further constitutional complaint filed, inter alia from here, against the second German Ratification Act of 18/12/2020 on the same day (docket no. 2 BvR 2217/20) was rejected by the BVerfG without any substantive discussion of the claimed violations of fundamental rights, thus enabling the ratification procedure to be concluded.

Having regard to the extremely eventful history of the UPCA, it remains to be seen whether the Agreement will actually enter into force on the date communicated by the German Federal government.

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