21 February 2013

Representation before the Unified Patent Court from the point of view of the Rules of Procedure

In this earlier posting I sketched the contradictory positions of general lawyer associations (e.g. CCBE) and more patent-related organisations (e.g. epi and CEIPI) as to the authorisation rights before the Unified Patent Court (UPC), back then called European and EU Patents Court (EEPC).


As analysed on the ksnh::law blog in an article titled Representation before the UPC: Are some Patent Attorneys authorised without Patent Litigation Certificate?, there are four groups of legal professionals defined in Article 48 UPCA and Rule 286 RoP that will be entitled to autonomously represent cases before the new court:
  1. lawyers authorised to practise before a court of a Contracting Member State,

  2. jurists authorised to practice in patent related matters before a court in a Contracting Member State, 
  3. European Patent Attorney having obtained the European Patent Litigation Certificate, and
  4. European Patent Attorney having an appropriate qualification.
While no 1 relates to attorneys-at-law, there are some good reasons that no 2 may cover legally trained patent professionals who are authorised to only practice in patent related matters before a court of a Contracting Member State, such as e.g. German or British patent attorneys.

Further, no 3 relates to European Patent Attorneys according to Art 134 EPC having obtained the European Patent Litigation Certificate which may be obtained by attending a course similar to the Patent Litigation in Europe program of CEIPI in Strassbourg, while no 4 might relate to European Patent Attorneys having alternative qualifications such as an LL.M.degree in IP law or practical litigation expertise proved by a case book.


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