Last week the German Constitutional Court declared the Act of Approval to the Agreement on a Unified Patent Court is void. While not a definitive end to a European “Federal Circuit”, my sense is that is the result. Even putting aside this ruling, a similar ruling in Hungary, UK withdraw from European Union and the COVID-19 fallout make the creation of a central European patent court highly unlikely.
This decision and the events above will mean “business as usual”. Some may see that as positive; I see it as a lost opportunity to further clarify the role and value of intellectual property to global innovation and trade. As far as Ocean Tomo is concerned, we will continue to lay the ground work for a global intellectual property market, relying further of the U.S. and Chinese systems as anchors to inform global patent pricing. I now also see an even greater need for the work of the International Arbitration Center in Tokyo (IACT) (https://www.iactokyo.com/) as a forum that brings globally leading IP judges to expeditiously resolve a range of disputes, with a specialty in IP. IACT and Ocean Tomo collaborate as independent parties to further dispute resolution. Presuming no existing relationship with the parties to a given IACT proceeding, Ocean Tomo may serve as a valuation and damages expert for either party or as a neutral, panel appointed expert to assist IACT. Ocean Tomo fees are paid by the party which engages the firm or shared equally by the parties when appointed and accepted as a neutral panel expert. IACT and Ocean Tomo believe that having an independent valuation resource can both expedite the process and provide a fairer, more objective result.
For more details on the German Constitutional Court decision:
Link to an English translation of the Court’s decision: