The finance helpdesk just published an answer to the question: "Is it a problem if the eligible costs of a Beneficiary turn out to be significantly higher than the EC contribution for FP7 projects?".
Their answer is "absolutely not":
"If you are in the position where your eligible costs are higher then you can actually claim for, please still show your full correct eligible costs even if you think that you will not receive extra funding for it. Do not artificially cap your eligible costs so that the requested funding is a direct fit.
Showing that you actually spent more that you are allowed to claim for is good on so many levels:
1) The Commission feel that they get more value for money – and that you were committed to the project.
2) If another partner underspends, and the consortium agrees, then you could claim extra money.
3) If you have to do similar work in the future you can justify asking for more funding.
4) If you have an external audit and it is found that some of your eligible costs are actually ineligible, then you have more eligible costs to draw from."
The European Commission has adopted a Recommendation to the Council that would provide the Commission with negotiating directives for the conclusion of an agreement creating a Unified Patent Litigation System (UPLS). Indeed, the diverse competences in the field of patents imply involving the European Community, its Member States and other contracting parties of the European Patent Convention, such as Switzerland and Norway.
The court structure would basically be composed of a decentralised first instance, a single appeal instance and a role for the European Court of Justice (ECJ). It should have jurisdiction on both European patents and future Community patents.
According to the Commission, the current patent litigation system, which is complex, slow and costly, would increase legal certainty and efficiency, helping to stimulate innovation and competitiveness. It would also render the patent system more affordable, in particular for SMEs.
The court structure to be established in the framework of the UPLS would have jurisdiction both for existing European patents and for future Community patents. This constitutes a further significant step in the pursuit of the EU's patent reform agenda. Read more.