A Patent Sea Change: The First Serving of Major Global Patent Law Changes Begins
Jason Garbell, Senior Patent Counsel, Novozymes AS, Denmark
This decade brings a sea change in patent law, with significant changes to the patent systems of Europe, the United States and Australia as well as a rapidly maturing Chinese patent system.
The most significant of all the global changes may be occurring in Europe. Following at least a quarter century of debate, the European Council of Ministers reached an agreement for the “unification” of the European patent litigation system. The new system entirely changes the way we will be able to enforce patents in Europe and is equivalent in patent law impact to the creation of the single European currency. More debate will be necessary (as well as overcoming potential legal challenges to the basis of the agreement) to agree on the final form of the unified European court system, but the final treaty is expected to be signed in late 2012, and the system implemented in 2014.
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