The European Council has just indicated on its website (https://www.consilium.europa.eu/en/documents-publications/treaties-agreements/agreement/?id=2015056) that the Protocol to the Agreement on a Unified Patent Court on provisional application (also called PAP) has entered into force yesterday, January 19, 2022.
Yesterday, December 2nd, 2021, the Austrian Bundesrat (second chamber of the Austrian Parliament) approved unanimously the Protocol to the Agreement on a Unified Patent Court on provisional application (the PAP-Protocol) of the Unified Patent Court Agreement (UPCA).
The Protocol to the Agreement on a Unified Patent Court on provisional application (the PAP-Protocol) was initially signed on 1st October 2015 to establish a Phase of Provisional Application (PAP) to ensure « a smooth transition into the operational phase and ensure the proper functioning of the Unified Patent Court before the entry into force of the Agreement on a Unified Patent Court ».
The Unified Patent Court Agreement will enter into a provisional preparatory stage once 13 signatory states of the Agreement including Germany, France and the United Kingdom and having ratified said Agreement have ratified or expressed their consent to be bound by the Protocol on Provisional Application (A.3(1) of the Protocol).
The publication of the law in the Federal Law Gazette finally puts an end to the legal complications that have been blocking the german ratification process and, consequently, the establishment of the Unified Patent Court (UPC).
But this does not mean that the UPC can finally start to operate.