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UofW Law Speaker Series: New Rules for Patent Litigation in Europe.
February 19, 2021 @ 12:00 pm – 2:00 pm
The core theme of the lecture is to explore if and how the rules governing patent litigation can help or affect the innovation of small and early-stage businesses, such as start-ups. The European patent litigation landscape may well be about to welcome significant changes. The implementation of the Unitary Patent Package System will represent the result of the evolution towards the unification of the European patent system. During the journey towards patent harmonization in Europe, it is, however, necessary to consider that the need for patent protection and enforcement varies depending on the type and nature of the industry actors. The lecture will provide a brief introductory overview of how the system of patent litigation is currently designed in Europe and how it will change once that the envisaged Unified Patent Court (UPC) will be established. Some differences and similarities with the court system in the United States will also be highlighted. The talk will then proceed with a more in-depth analysis of specific issues which can have important implications for start-ups. The main problems concern the proximity to the venue of litigation, the territorial scope of decisions and the consequences of the grant of permanent injunctions. To this aim, the lecture compares the relevant provisions of the current system, with particular attention to Germany, France and the United Kingdom, with the proposed rules of the future system of unified patent litigation before the UPC.