On 14 January 2020, the German Federal Ministry of Justice published a draft act to modernize German patent law. Among other things, the draft addresses the fact that patent infringement trials proceed much quicker than parallel invalidity proceeding (which, under German law, are conducted separately). Hence, an injunction may be issued in first instance infringement proceedings before a decision on the validity of the patent in suit can be obtained; the resulting time gap between infringement and invalidity decision is called the “injunction gap” in German patent litigation. The draft modernization act seeks to improve the coordination between infringement and invalidity proceedings by having the Federal Patent Court provide a preliminary assessment of patent validity quickly. In view of such preliminary assessment, an infringement court may then stay infringement proceedings until a decision in the parallel invalidity proceedings.


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