|London often looks like this|
after a couple of pints of Badger
|Many cricket games now last longer|
than Patent Court hearings ...
1. Already the patent litigant’s venue of choice
|The choice of a woman to hold|
the Scales of Justice reflects
national policy on Equal
In the intervening years, pending the adoption of a Community patent, where litigants have had a choice of forum, the UK courts have become the obvious venue of choice for litigants and practitioners -- European and foreign alike. The choice has been justified by litigants who point to the impartial court system (see below), the equal weight afforded to patentees and defendants, the high quality decisions and the speed of the system and litigation support, leading from trial to first instance judgment in 6-12 months.
2. It has the people
Besides New York (which is sadly not an option), London is the largest and most important financial market in the world. Say what you want about the current state of affairs in the world’s financial markets but, where there is strong financial center, therein follows innovation and expertise – expertise that is found in the UK’s judiciary, its experienced practitioners, and litigation support services.
|After a busy day in court, judges|
amuse themselves by playing
3. It has the venue
|Called the Rolls Building because|
IP litigation literally rolls along ...
As to be expected with any new building, there were some initial teething problems, but the venue is ready to go, should the Unified Patent Court find a home in London -- avoiding unnecessary costs and long delays in getting Europe's new, streamlined patent system up and running. Good litigators knows that avoiding unnecessary costs and delays should always be the main objective in everything they do, especially in establishing the new court system.
4. It has the location
If you are travelling from Silicon Valley or Sydney to attend a court hearing in the Unified Patent Court, do you want one non-stop flight or a three-leg journey to your destination? If you miss your flight, do you want to have to wait a day for the next flight? Thought so . ..! London is undoubtedly the world’s best connected city. Its five international airports see 5,000 international flights departing to 200 destinations, 10,000 incoming flights a week and 100 million passengers a year. How many direct flights are there from Alicante or Munich to destinations such as Cork, Billund, Kaunas, Poznan ..
|British ingenuity solves great|
problems, like "where do you
put the bathrooms in a building
made of glass?"
|The pound sterling: still|
worth more than its cousin
6. A few more reasons
A London-based Unified Patent Court is also politically advantageous for the UK and for Europe. The AmeriKat will not venture down the road of European politics (she cannot vote in UK or in EU elections so is neutral on this point) but, suffice to say, she agrees with the comment by "anonymous at 13:33" on Merpel's post (here). Unlike countries such as Italy and Spain, the UK has been ready and willing to engage in a Unified Patent System for a while and, unlike Germany, France, Spain, Italy, Belgium etc, the UK does not host an EU IP institution. Some say that, because Italy and Spain are reluctant to participate in the scheme as it stands, the court should go to one of them as an encouragement to them to commit. Willingness (or reluctance) to be involved in the system and process is not the litmus test, nor should it be a deciding factor for the appropriate venue for the court. The decision should be based on merit and the ability for the seat to meet the goals of an effective Unified Patent system and court as identified in the Working Draft's Recitals. (picture, left - the UK's most famous cat, besides the IPKat)
London already has everything and everyone that is needed to run an effective Unified Patent Court. All you need to bring is an umbrella ...