Patent Litigation in the Pharmaceutical Sector in Germany

Dr. Anna Wolters

Although there is no specific "pharmaceutical patent law" codified in the German Patent Act, there are actually some particularities in litigation to be considered, which relate to this very specific market. The presentation will mainly deal with the infringement of pharmaceutical patent claims and their enforcement. This includes use claims often found in pharmaceutical patents. In this regard, the scope of protection of such claims will be discussed. The presentation will also touch upon some recent case-law on the question of equivalent infringement. A further specific issue is the question of privileged use acts. Particularly those acts are exempted from patent protection, which are performed in order to obtain a market authorization for the pharmaceutical product, which is the so-called "Bolar exemption". Subsequently, the procedural enforcement of pharmaceutical patents in Germany will be described and how to gather evidence for proving infringement in litigation. In that regard, emphasis will be put on preliminary injunction proceedings in the pharmaceutical field and respective case-law.