In April, we reported that the European Commission adopted the Single Market Act. The Single Market Act is a group of 12 initiatives intended to boost growth and enhance confidence in a single, European market. A key initiative is supporting research and innovation by establishing a unitary patent protection and a unified patent litigation system. Currently, while it is possible to file and prosecute a single patent application at the European Patent Office (EPO), there is no “European patent.” Instead, following the grant of a European patent, the applicant has to request validation of the grant in each member country where the applicant wants patent protection. This imposes a significant financial and administrative burden for applicants wishing to validate a granted European patent in more than a few countries.
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