EU: German Constitutional Court publishes decision on UPC


German Constitutional Court publishes decision on UPC

After more than two and a half years of wait, the German Federal Constitutional Court has published today its decision upholding the constitutional complaint against the German ratification of the Agreement on a Unified Patent Court (UPC). The Court´s decision (BVerfG, Beschluss des Zweiten Senats vom 13. February 2020 - 2 BvR 739/17 -, Rn. (1-21).), from which three out of eight judges dissented, states that the Act of Approval of the UPC Agreement by the German Federal Parliament was void, as a two-thirds majority was required.

This decision constitutes a major blow to the very existence of the UPC. Ratification by Germany, UK and France was needed for the UPC to enter into force. The UK had already ratified, but BREXIT posed a major obstacle to its participation.  All the more so after the British Government declared recently that it would not join the UPC because of the requirement to remain under CJEU´s jurisdiction. Today´s decision paints an even bleaker future for the UPC. Even if the Bundestag tried again to pass the Act, it would be difficult, with the current state of affairs, that a two-thirds majority agreed. And, even if it did, probably a new complaint would be lodged, since the German Court did not consider the other grounds brought up in the 2017 complaint.

We will follow the reactions to today´s decision with interest, and will keep you posted.  read more