casalonga logo

16 January 2017 - Unified Patent Court - UK wants to end the jurisdiction of the European Court of Justice in Britain

In her speech of January 16, 2017, Ms May indicated that the UK will take back control of the national laws and bring an end to the jurisdiction of European Court of Justice in Britain.

At the same time, Jo Johnson, the new UK Minister of State for Intellectual Property confirms the UK’s decision to ratify the Unified Patent Court Agreement.

The entry into force of the UPC Agreement could therefore still be expected before the end of 2017, after ratification by the UK and Germany (France has already ratified).

However, the situation after Brexit needs to be carefully considered. The UPC Agreement in its present wording, clearly provides that the primacy for Union law must be respected (Article 20 UPCA) and that the decisions of the European Court of Justice (ECJ) shall be binding for the UPC. This seems to contradict directly the wish of the UK to refuse the jurisdiction of the ECJ.

During the next two years, it will be necessary to find appropriate ways of amending the UPC Agreement in such a way that the UK could continue to participate, even after leaving the European Union.