UPC aims to be operational by December 2017
The UKIPO UPC Taskforce and the UPC Preparatory Committee have today confirmed that Provisional Application Phase (PAP) for the UPC will start at the end of spring 2017 (May 2017).
This means they expect the UPC to become operational by December 2017.
The start of the sunrise-period for the possibility to opt out European patents is now planned for early September 2017 which will provide a minimum of 3 months for patent holders who wish to opt out their patents to do so before the Court becomes operational.
Judicial recruitment can also get underway under the PAP.
The announcement went on to say that:
"The above timetable is conditional and provided with the clear disclaimer that there are a number of factors that will dictate whether it is achievable. The most important factors in meeting these dates is the necessary ratifications of the UPCA and accession to the Protocol on Provisional Application. If these are not achieved the time-plan will be disrupted.
There will be a final Preparatory Committee meeting in early March 2017, and in due course, updates and more specific details of the Committee’s work programme will be published on this website. Those who have applied for judicial appointments will be contacted separately."