French Parliament Approves London Agreement


MUNICH - Following the approval of the National Assembly on September 26, 2007, the French Senate approved on October 9, 2007, two pieces of legislation relating to European patent law:

• Draft Law No. 473 authorizing ratification of the European Patent Convention as revised in November 2000 (EPC 2000)

• Draft Law No. 474 authorizing ratification of the October 2000 London Agreement

According to a press release by the European Patent Office (EPO), once the instruments of ratification have been deposited, both the EPC 2000 and the London Agreement will enter into force for France over the next few months; the EPC 2000 on December 13, 2007, the London Agreement on the first day of the fourth month following deposit of the instrument of ratification.

The aim of both texts is to improve the European patent system established in the 1970s. The EPC 2000 modernizes the European patent grant procedure for which the EPO is responsible, whilst the London Agreement makes it easier to obtain a European patent- especially for small and medium-sized firms- by reducing post-grant translation costs.

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