Ireland’s new Government committed to the Unified Patent Court

The Government of the 32nd Dáil is the newly established Government of Ireland, formed after the 2016 general election to Dáil Éireann on 26 February 2016. After three failed attempts to elect an Taoiseach (Prime Minister), the Dáil (the lower house of the legislature of Ireland) eventually re-elected former Taoiseach Enda Kenny, and his new cabinet was elected on 6 May 2016.

Mary Mitchell O’Connor of the Fine Gael party was appointed as Minister for Jobs, Enterprise and Innovation, a role which historically has been responsible for the implementation of policy in the area of intellectual property. Mitchell O’Connor has previously been involved at local level with transport, economic development and planning; and has taken a previous stance on patent legislation amendment as a pro-business and pro-enterprise approach on the part of the Government.

The new Irish Government has just yesterday published “A Programme for a Partnership Government”, which details the programme for government agreed between the Fine Gael Party, the Independent Alliance and Independent TDs (MPs).

As part of the new initiatives to be introduced by Government, it is proposed to address the Constitutional reform required to enable Ireland to ratify the Unified Patent Court (UPC) Agreement. This is a clear statement that the Irish Government is committed to taking the steps necessary to allow the Irish public to decide whether to transfer jurisdiction in respect of Irish-validated European Patents from the Irish Courts to the UPC.

It looks like we could expect Ireland to be voting in a referendum to consent to the UPC before the end of 2016.

Find out more about how 2016 looks to be a pivotal year for the establishment of the UPC.

If you have any questions about the UPC and the affects it will have on your business, please contact Donal M Kelly PhD, European Patent Attorney.