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Nina O'Sullivan - Mishcon de Reya

Irish referendum on joining Unified Patent Court: Nina O'Sullivan in Commercial Dispute Resolution

Posted on 21 February 2024

Nina O'Sullivan, Mishcon de Reya Partner and Head Knowledge Lawyer spoke to Commercial Dispute Resolution after the Irish Government announced a referendum on the country's participation in the Unified Patent Court (UPC) and Unitary Patent.

An affirmative vote could give way to wide-ranging changes in Ireland for protection and enforcement of patents. Ireland shares many traits with the UK including a common law-based, English-speaking legal system, and both jurisdictions are contracting states to the European Patent Convention (EPC).

Speaking on the grant of a European patent under the EPC framework, Nina said: “You end up with a bundle of national patents you must enforce on a country-by-country basis – this is the challenge of the existing regime.”  Nina also commented on the early days of the UPC and the challenges that have arisen in relation to transparency.

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