UP renewals - how much?

One of the potential advantages of a UP is the opportunity to obtain wider territorial protection with a lower renewal expenditure and reduced administration costs over the lifetime of a patent. A single renewal fee will be paid to the EPO for a UP for every year you want to renew your UP. After much debate the renewal fee has been set to match the sum total of the national renewal fees payable in the four most widely validated EP countries, namely: Germany, France, the United Kingdom and The Netherlands. The expected renewal fees over the lifetime of a UP are set out in Table 1.

Table 1

Year

True TOP 4 (€) 

2

35

3

105

4

145

5

315

6

475

7

630

8

815

9

990

10

1 175

11

1 460

12

1 775

13

2 105

14

2 455

15

2 830

16

3 240

17

3 640

18

4 055

19

4 455

20

4 855

TOTAL

 35 555

Whether opting for a UP is commercially attractive will therefore be a balance between the scope of protection required and the cost of a UP versus opting for classical EP validations. In our experience the breadth of EP validations varies widely between different technology areas and so whether a UP will be attractive will be sector driven and specific to each business.

Table 2 shows a comparison of the renewal costs for differing validation strategies during the lifetime of a patent.

Table 2

Year

EP Large portfolio (€) (13; DE, UK, FR, AT, NL, BE, LU, IE, SE, DK, FI, GR, PT) 

EP Medium portfolio (€) (5: DE, UK, FR, NL, SE) 

EP Small portfolio (€) (3; DE, UK, FR) 

UP (€)
(25 member states) 

6

1600

660

330

475

15

7600

3360

1975

2830

20

12125

5575

3520

4855