Member States participating in UPC
Member States of the EU that have already ratified the UPC Agreement (or in the case of Germany has indicated it will do so) and so will take part in the UPC as soon as it commences are:
Austria, Belgium, Bulgaria, Denmark, Estonia, Finland, France, Germany, Italy, Latvia, Lithuania, Luxembourg, Malta, Netherlands, Portugal, Slovenia, Sweden.
Further Member States that have signed the UPC Agreement but not yet ratified and cannot take part until they ratify are:
Cyprus, Czechia, Greece, Hungary, Ireland, Romania, Slovakia.
The following Member States are not expected to join the UPC:
Croatia, Poland, Spain
EPC countries which are not Member States of the EU and so not eligible to take part in UPC are:
Albania, Iceland, Liechtenstein, Monaco, Montenegro (from 1 October 2022), North Macedonia, Norway, San Marino, Serbia, Switzerland, Turkey, UK.
Confirmed locations for local/regional divisions of UPC
The following locations have been confirmed for local/regional divisions.
|Member state||Local / regional division||Location||No. of Legally Qualified Judges|
|Bulgaria||No local / regional division|
|Luxembourg||No local / regional division (is seat of court appeal)|
|Malta||No local / regional division|
The Members States cooperating to provide the Nordic-Baltic Regional Division, which will be mainly located in Stockholm, are:
Estonia, Latvia, Lithuania and Sweden.
Note that, where a Member State does not have a local or regional division, proceedings that would otherwise be brought in local/regional division shall be brought before the central division.
There will be central divisions in Paris and Munich. Munich will deal with patents relating to mechanical engineering while Paris deals with electronics. There was to be a central division in London dealing with pharmaceuticals and life sciences, but as the UK is no longer eligible to take part in UPC, either a different third central division will be nominated or this subject matter will be split between Paris and Munich.
There will be an Arbitration and Mediation Centre in each of Lisbon and Ljubljana.
There is a Training Centre in Budapest for training judges, although Hungary itself has not yet formally ratified.
Written by Joanne Welch.
Interested in learning more about the UPC? This is one of a series of short explainers about the Unitary Patent and Unified Patent Court. The full list of articles is:
- What is the Unitary Patent, and how do I get one?
- What is the Unified Patent Court?
- What is the likely timing of the UPC and UP coming into being?
- How does the opt-out work in the transitional period of the UPC Agreement?
- What are the options if you want to be able to use the UPC?
- What are the options if you want to avoid the UPC?
- What languages does the UPC use?
- Member States participating in UPC