Amendment of Brussels I Regulation: The Council of Justice Ministers agrees on a General Approach.

On 20 November 2012 the European Parliament voted in favour of the Legal Affairs’ Committee amendments to the European Commission’s proposal to reform the Brussels Regulation. The draft legislation was sent to the Council of the EU for final adoption, which took place on December 06th 2013 at the Council of Justice Ministers.


The Council agreed on a general approach on a proposal for a regulation amending Regulation 1215/2012 on jurisdiction and the recognition and enforcement of judgments in civil and commercial matters, also known as Brussels I.

This general approach will constitute the basis for negotiations with the European Parliament in order to agree the final text of the regulation.


What needs to be amended?

Article 31 of the UPC Agreement states that the international jurisdiction of the Unified Patent Court is to be established in accordance with Regulation 1215/2012, or, where applicable, the 2007 Lugano Convention. Article 89 of the UPC Agreement links the entry into force of that Agreement to the entry into force of the amendments to Regulation 1215/2012 concerning the relationship between those two instruments.

It is therefore necessary to amend Regulation 1215/2012, in particular to insert provisions which determine how the Unified Patent Court can exercise its international jurisdiction.

The Commission submitted its proposal in July 2013. Although the main objective of the proposal is to regulate the relationship between Regulation 1215/2012 and the UPC Agreement, it also takes into account the existence of the Benelux Court of Justice and the international jurisdiction to be exercised by that Court in specific matters which are covered by Regulation 1215/2012.

Source: Press release of the Justice and Home Affairs Council meeting