What are the advantages of the new system over the existing one?

Patent litigation: US vs Europe

Historically, the US has been perceived as a highly attractive forum for patent litigation for obvious economic and business reasons, given that one patent decision can instantly provide patent holders with protection in one of the largest consumer markets in the world.

However, with the new Unitary Patent Package set to cover 24 Member States with a consumer base of about 400 million, the Unitary Patent and the Unified Patent Court offer an attractive proposition for global companies. In addition to covering a significant consumer base, infringement proceedings in the UPC are predicted to be considerably faster and cheaper than in the District Courts in the US:

  • No or only limited documentary discovery
  • No or only limited scope for interim applications such as summary judgment
  • No or very limited oral testimony and therefore shorter trials
  • Specialist/trained patent Judges
  • A first instance Judgment on the merits is expected to be concluded in slightly over 1 year
  • In most cases, the losing party will be expected to pay a significant proportion of the winning party's legal costs