Good news for manufacturer of laminate flooring!
Unilin’s basis patent expires at beginning of June 2017
The European click-system basis patent for hard floor coverings held by the Unilin Group will expire on 7 June 2017 after having been valid for 20 years. The product and process patent, which in Europe features the number EP 0 843 763 and was granted to Unilin Beheer B.V., Nieuwerkerk (Netherlands), on 4 October 2000, describes the fundamental principles of the Uniclic system with which individual floor-covering elements can be joined using a glueless, one-piece tongue-and-groove connection.
Some Unilin licensees were of the opinion that the expiry of the patent family based on registration WO 97/47834 would mean that the Uniclic principle could be used freely in future, which in turn would signify that licence fees levied until now would no longer apply from June 2017. In talks held with licensees in the last few months regarding the expiry of the Uniclic basis patent, Unilin has made clear that production of click profiles will still not be possible in future without the approval of Unilin.