UK secondary legislation in place to accommodate UPC and UP; Bulgaria poised to ratify UPCA

There need to be 4 more formal ratifications of the UPC Agreement (UPCA), including the UK and Germany, for the UPC regime to come into effect. Bulgaria now looks poised to ratify, having passed the legislation necessary to implement the UPCA (when it comes into force) on 22 April 2016. If so, it will be the 10th ratification of the UPCA so far (see here for more on ratification and the UPCA)

On 12 March The Patents (European Patent with Unitary Effect and Unified Patent Court) Order 2016 (SI 2016/388)  was passed  to implement the changes necessary to give effect to the UPC and unitary patent in UK law; amendments to the Patent Rules were also made in a statutory instrument on 20 April (The Patent (Amendment) Rules 2016)  to allow for unitary patents once the UPCA comes into force. Although, the UK IPO has indicated that the UK Government would not automatically delay the ratification of the Unified Patent Court Agreement (UPCA) until after the Brexit referendum, recent comments from the IPO suggest that actual ratification is "likely to be post referendum". If the UK were to ratify this would leave only ratification by Germany and any four other contracting states needed to bring the UPCA into force.