It is often said that ‘tomorrow never comes’.  Likewise, a recurring theme for some years has been that ‘the UPC will start next year’. As 2019 is now well under way, it is time to consider whether this year we can be more optimistic than this, and how the turmoil in the UK Parliament affects…

While the UK is holding its breath ahead of Parliament’s vote on the Brexit deal, many patent specialists think a ‘no deal’ will be a fatal blow for the UK’s ambition to stay in the Unitary Patent system. But according to Alfonso Sabán, attorney at law and political scientist in Madrid, it is obvious that,…

What were the most popular articles of the Kluwer Patent Blog in 2018? A look at the list shows that – even more strongly than in previous years – one topic drew more readers than anything else: the functioning of European Patent Office. Episodes of last year’s series on the EPO by Thorsten Bausch –…

The preparations for the Unified Patent Court are going on so the court can start functioning as soon as possible if the German Constitutional Court rejects the challenges to the Unitary Patent project. The UPC Preparatory Committee has declared this in an update which was published on its website on 19 december 2018. It is…

The European Patent Office has opened an online consultation on the possibility of allowing more flexibility in the timing of the examination process by offering means to postpone the examination of European patent applications. The reasons for the consultation are explained on the EPO’s website: ‘Since the launch of the Early Certainty initiative in 2014,…

The number of inventive step attacks in opposition procedures at the European Patent Office may be constrained in the future due to a recent change in the EPO Guidelines. According to David Brophy, partner at FRKelly, the change will improve efficiency, although the restrictions may also open up a new avenue for criticising decisions on…

The European Patent Office ‘will consider possible next actions’ together with the EPO Member States after a high-profile decision of a Board of Appeal earlier this week, concerning the patentability of plants. In case T 1063/18, the BoA decided that EPC Rules which were introduced by the EPO Administrative Council in 2017 to exclude plants…

Plants which are produced according to essentially biological processes need to be held patentable, despite EPO Guidelines which were introduced in 2017 to exclude them from patentability. The EPO Board of Appeal came to this remarkable decision earlier today in case T 1063/18. By Frits Michiels and Bart van Wezenbeek Those who thought that the…

(Corrected) The American Food Drug Administration (FDA) will follow the European Medicines Agency from London to Amsterdam because of the Brexit. That is clear from a report on the website of the FDA, describing its international activities. “Since the first foreign office opened in Beijing in November of 2008, FDA’s international presence has grown to…