The research exemption for patents has long been a vital mechanism in striking a balance between protecting inventors’ rights and promoting scientific exploration. Within Europe, Belgium historically provided a notoriously broad exemption relating to research. However, on the 1st of June this year, the Unified Patent Court will start. One of the aims of the new patent court is harmonization and Belgium and other countries that will join the system have aligned their patent law. The changes that have been introduced in the Belgian law will have an immediate impact on companies, universities and institutes and concern general research as well as research and development for medicines specifically.