United Kingdom






Status of ratification

No. On 28 November 2016, the United Kingdom announced during the meeting of the Competitiveness Council of the European Union that, despite the UK's vote to leave the EU following the referendum of 23 June 2016, it will proceed with the preparations to ratify the UPC Agreement. On 14 December 2016 the UK signed the Protocol on Privileges and Immunities.

Before ratification can occur, secondary legislation implementing the Protocol, giving the UPC the relevant privileges and immunities as an international institution, must be passed by both the English and Scottish Parliaments. The International Organisations (Immunities and Privileges) (Scotland) Amendment (No. 2) Order 2017 was passed by the Scottish Parliament on 25 October 2017. The equivalent English Order was laid before the Westminster Parliament on 26 June 2017. It is following the affirmative resolution procedure which requires approval of both chambers of Parliament: the House of Commons and the House of Lords. The Order must first be debated and approved by committee after which it may be passed by the House of Commons without further debate. A House of Lords committee has already considered the Order.

Local or Regional CFI 

Local and central.

Location/Venue of CFI

In August 2015 the UK IPO announced it had signed a lease for space in Aldgate Tower in the City of London, securing premises for the London section of the Central Division and the UK Local Division of the UPC. There is the potential to have further local divisions but this will depend on demand.


Two national judges and one judge from the pool.


English, French & German (Central division). English (Local division).

UP/UPC implementing legislation

Yes. Amendments to the Patents Act 1977 to give effect to the Agreement on the UPC have been made by The Patents (European Patent with Unitary Effect and Unified Patent Court) Order 2016 (S.I. 2016/388) and consequent amendments to the Patents Rules 2007 have been made by The Patents (Amendment) Rules 2016 (S.I. 2016/517). Both Orders come into force on the date of entry into force of the Agreement on the UPC.

Other UP matters of interest 

The UK signed the Protocol on Privileges and Immunities on 14 December 2016. In preparation for ratification of the UPCA, the Protocol was presented to Parliament on 20 January 2017.

Related links



Twobirds contact 
Katharine Stephens, Rob Williams