IP2Innovate welcomes latest changes to the UPC’s transparency rules
BRUSSELS, 12 July 2022 – IP2Innovate, a trade group pushing for a better functioning patent system in Europe, welcomes the transparency rules agreed last week by the Unified Patent Court which will ensure the Court’s decisions and orders are publicly available. The final version of the rules “are an improvement on the status quo in Europe, where national patent courts offer very little transparency about cases,” said Patrick Oliver, executive director of IP2Innovate. “Public accessibility to Court decisions and orders is essential to build trust in the Court and encourage industry to start using it”, Patrick Oliver continued.
Transparency is essential for parties to be aware of the litigation history of a patent and be able to coordinate their defense with other parties. It’s particularly important for small and medium size enterprises with small or non-existent in-house legal teams.
The UPC originally proposed full transparency of all aspects of a patent court case, but that plan was abandoned in April. After an outcry from stakeholders, including from IP2Innovate, the UPC has partially reversed its position by reinstating rules to ensure that at least court decisions and orders are made publicly available. However, pleadings and evidence in cases will only be available “upon reasoned request.” As the Court starts functioning later this year, IP2Innovate encourages the Court to consult with industry and remain open to making further improvements to ensuring full transparency.
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