OJ EPO SE 3/2018, p82 - ANNEX 1

 

Decisions discussed in the Case Law Report 2017

 

I.

PATENTABILITY

 

 

 

 

A.

Exceptions to patentability

 

1.

Essentially biological processes for the production of plants

 

 

T 2323/11 3.3.04 24.01.17

2

2.

Therapeutic methods

 

2.1

Methods with both therapeutic and non-therapeutic indications

 

 

T 158/13 3.3.10 17.11.16

T 44/12 3.2.02 11.01.17

3

4

 

 

 

B.

Novelty

 

1.

State of the art

 

 

T 1090/12 3.5.06 29.06.17

5

2.

Availability to the public

 

2.1

Advertising brochure

 

 

T 523/14 3.2.03 17.02.17

6

2.2

Public prior use

 

2.2.1

Internal structure or composition of a product

 

 

T 2048/12 3.3.06 19.01.16

7

2.3

Obligation to maintain secrecy

 

 

T 1829/12 3.5.02 17.02.17

7

2.4

Making samples/products available for test purposes

 

 

T 2068/15 3.3.09 25.01.17

8

3.

Determining the content of the relevant prior art

 

3.1

General rules of interpretation

 

 

T 1658/12 3.4.03 06.04.17

10

4.

First and second medical use

 

4.1

Interpretation of "substance or composition"

 

 

T 1758/15 3.2.08 11.07.17

10

 

 

 

C.

Inventive step

 

1.

Closest prior art

 

1.1

Speculative character

 

 

T 725/11 3.3.01 13.03.17

11

2.

Assessment of inventive step

 

2.1

Technical character of the invention

 

 

T 630/11 3.5.01 13.07.17

12

2.2

Assessment of features relating to mathematical algorithms

 

 

T 625/11 3.4.01 19.01.17

13

2.3

Example of lack of inventive step

 

 

T 519/12 3.4.01 17.03.17

14

3.

Secondary indicia in the assessment of inventive step

 

 

T 1892/12 3.2.05 30.09.16

14

 

 

 

II.

PATENT APPLICATION AND AMENDMENTS

 

 

 

 

A.

Claims

 

1.

Clarity of claims

 

 

T 268/13 3.2.05 07.07.17

15

2.

Interpretation of claims

 

 

T 1513/12 3.4.01 21.09.17

15

 

 

 

B.

Unity of invention

 

1.

Unsearched subject-matter and applicability of Rule 137(5) EPC or former Rule 164(2) EPC

 

 

T 145/13 3.4.03 10.02.17

15

 

 

 

C.

Sufficiency of disclosure

 

1.

The relationship between Article 83 and Article 84 EPC

 

 

T 2290/12 3.2.05 13.10.16

17, 60

 

 

 

D.

Priority

 

1.

Priority right of the applicant or his successor in title

 

 

T 1201/14 3.5.05 09.02.17

18

2.

Disclosure in the previous application as a whole – solution of the same problem

 

 

T 1434/13 3.5.07 13.09.16

20

3.

First application – identity of invention

 

 

T 1525/12 3.5.07 23.03.17

21

4.

Multiple priorities for one claim – partial priority – application of G 1/15

 

 

T 282/12 3.3.07 09.11.17

T 260/14 3.3.07 13.04.17

T 1519/15 3.2.01 03.08.17

22

24

26

 

 

 

E.

Amendments

 

1.

Article 123(2) EPC – added subject-matter

 

1.1

Gold standard and essentiality test

 

 

T 1852/13 3.2.05 31.01.17

T 2599/12 3.2.04 05.05.17

T 782/16 3.3.07 18.07.17

27

27

28

1.2

Ranges – setting a new end-point with a value that has not been expressly disclosed

 

 

T 1986/14 3.3.10 11.10.16

28

1.3

Disclaimers

 

 

G 1/16 18.12.17

29

2.

Article 123(3) EPC

 

2.1

Extent of protection

 

 

T 1896/11 3.4.01 25.11.16

31

 

 

 

F.

Divisional applications

 

1.

1. Inadmissible extension – amending the description

 

 

T 835/11 3.2.05 16.03.17

32

2.

Language for filing divisional application

 

 

J 13/14 3.1.01 13.12.16

32

3.

Pendency of earlier application

 

 

J 10/16 3.1.01 26.09.16

33

 

 

 

III.

RULES COMMON TO ALL PROCEEDINGS BEFORE THE EPO

 

 

 

 

A.

The principle of the protection of legitimate expectations

 

1.

Contradictory acts

 

 

T 1825/14 3.5.03 05.09.16

34

 

 

 

B.

Right to be heard

 

1.

Surprising grounds or evidence

 

 

R 7/15 15.05.17

35

1.1

The meaning of "grounds or evidence"

 

 

T 556/15 3.3.07 01.06.17

36

2.

Text submitted or agreed by applicant (patent proprietor) – Article 113(2) EPC

 

2.1

General

 

 

T 1440/12 3.4.03 27.06.17

T 1477/15 3.2.02 23.02.17

37

38

2.2

Cases where the EPO is uncertain or mistaken about the approval of the text

 

 

T 1104/14 3.3.06 23.05.17

39

 

 

 

C.

Oral proceedings

 

1.

Late submission of new facts and evidence in the preparation for oral proceedings – Rule 116 EPC (Rule 71a EPC 1973)

 

 

T 1750/14 3.5.05 31.01.17

40

2.

Doubt as to the nature of the request for oral proceedings

 

 

T 1972/13 3.5.03 05.09.17

40

 

 

 

D.

Re-establishment of rights

 

1.

Right to file request for re-establishment of rights

 

 

T 181/14 3.5.02 13.07.17

41

2.

Loss of rights as a direct consequence by virtue of the EPC

 

 

J 23/14 3.1.01 15.12.16

41

3.

Admissibility of requests for re-establishment of rights

 

 

T 1588/15 3.2.04 15.02.17

43

 

 

 

E.

Languages

 

1.

Translations

 

 

T 1332/12 3.5.04 11.10.17

45

 

 

 

F.

Law of evidence

 

1.

Taking of evidence

 

1.1

Time frame for submitting evidence

 

 

T 545/08 3.5.07 24.03.17

46

2.

Evaluation of evidence

 

2.1

Witness testimony and written statements

 

 

T 2057/13 3.2.06 19.06.17

T 1107/12 3.3.05 19.09.17

46

46

2.2

Archives and internet publications

 

 

T 1711/11 3.4.01 09.11.16

T 545/08 3.5.07 24.03.17

47

48

2.3

Standard of proof

 

2.3.1

Receipt of formal documents

 

 

T 1/12 3.2.02 10.02.17

49

 

 

 

G.

Main and auxiliary requests

 

1.

Request not sufficiently defined

 

 

T 1138/12 3.2.06 09.05.17

49

2.

Withdrawal of request

 

 

T 388/12 3.4.01 07.03.17

50

 

 

 

H.

Suspected partiality

 

 

T 792/12 3.2.06 14.09.16

51

 

 

 

I.

Formal aspects of decisions of EPO departments

 

1.

Opposition division

 

 

T 1049/11 3.5.07 10.05.17

51

2.

Completion of the internal decision-making process

 

 

T 1138/12 3.2.06 09.05.17

52

3.

Department of first instance issues more than one decision

 

 

T 1972/13 3.5.03 05.09.17

52

4.

Examples of non-compliance with the requirements of Rule 111(2) EPC

 

 

J 18/16 3.1.01 08.02.17

53

5.

Decisions according to the state of the file

 

 

T 737/11 3.5.07 13.03.17

53

 

 

 

J.

Notification

 

1.

Forms of notification

 

 

T 1693/13 3.5.05 28.03.17

54

2.

Spheres of risk and apportioning the burden of proof

 

 

T 1934/16 3.2.06 21.08.17

T 2054/15 3.2.02 23.11.16

54

55

 

 

 

K.

Representation

 

1.

Legal practitioners entitled to act as professional representatives

 

 

T 1846/11 3.4.02 27.10.16

56

 

 

 

IV.

PROCEEDINGS BEFORE THE EPO

 

 

 

 

A.

Examination procedure

 

 

T 2324/14 3.5.06 04.10.17

57

 

 

 

B.

Special features of opposition and appeal proceedings

 

1.

Apportionment of costs

 

1.1

Acts or omissions prejudicing the timely and efficient conduct of oral proceedings

 

 

T 2377/13 3.3.07 19.01.17

T 1699/15 3.2.04 20.12.16

T 258/13 3.2.07 11.01.17

58

59

60

 

 

 

C.

Opposition procedure

 

1.

Amendments in opposition proceedings

 

 

T 2290/12 3.2.05 13.10.16

T 1758/15 3.2.08 11.07.17

60

60

2.

Correction of the name of the opponent

 

 

T 579/16 3.3.03 18.01.17

61

3.

No consideration of late-filed evidence of public prior use

 

 

T 1955/13 3.2.01 09.05.17

61

 

 

 

D.

Appeal procedure

 

1.

Filing and admissibility of appeal

 

1.1

Entitlement to appeal – party adversely affected

 

 

T 735/13 3.2.04 11.10.17

62

1.2

Entitlement to appeal – procedural status of the parties

 

 

T 540/13 3.5.03 29.03.17

63

1.3

Form and content of notice of appeal (Rule 99(1) EPC)

 

 

T 2561/11 3.2.05 04.07.16

63

1.4

Statement of grounds of appeal

 

 

T 393/15 3.3.05 17.03.17

64

2.

Interlocutory revision

 

 

T 2445/11 3.5.07 02.05.17

65

3.

Subject-matter under examination and non-opposed dependent claims

 

 

T 2094/12 3.2.04 05.04.17

65

4.

Review of first-instance decisions

 

4.1

The boards' discretion

 

4.1.1

Scope for reviewing discretion

 

 

T 820/14 3.5.06 29.11.16

T 1816/11 3.4.03 22.11.16

67

68

4.1.2

Own discretion to admit submissions not admitted at first instance

 

 

T 945/12 3.5.07 22.06.17

T 556/13 3.4.02 14.10.16

69

69

4.2

Review of an opposition division's discretionary decision (not) to admit a new ground for opposition

 

 

T 1286/14 3.5.05 29.09.16

70

4.3

Review of discretion – stay of proceedings

 

 

J 1/16 3.1.01 25.11.16

71

5.

Late submission

 

5.1

Late-filed documents

 

 

T 2193/14 3.2.01 14.03.17

71

5.2

Unsubstantiated requests

 

 

T 2598/12 3.5.03 04.08.17

72

5.3

Late-filed requests

 

5.3.1

Response to new objections

 

 

T 2227/12 3.5.02 04.05.17

72

5.3.2

Diverging versions of claims

 

 

T 1903/13 3.4.02 27.04.17

73

5.3.3

Reverting to the patent as granted

 

 

T 1578/13 3.2.06 27.11.17

73

6.

Reimbursement of appeal fees

 

6.1

Distinction between an appeal deemed not to have been filed and an inadmissible appeal

 

 

T 2406/16 3.3.05 21.09.17

74

6.2

Substantial procedural violation

 

6.2.1

Oral proceedings

 

 

T 679/14 3.5.07 19.01.17

75

6.2.2

No reasons for refusal of request for postponement

 

 

T 1750/14 3.5.05 31.01.17

75

 

 

 

E.

Proceedings before the Enlarged Board of Appeal

 

1.

Petition for review under Article 112a EPC

 

 

R 2/14 22.04.16 

R 3/15 28.11.17

R 2/15 21.10.15

R 8/15 18.07.16

R 6/16 29.09.17

76

76

77

77

78

 

 

 

V.

DISCIPLINARY BOARD OF APPEAL

 

 

 

 

1.

Objective review of the marks awarded

 

 

D 20/16 16.02.17

79

 

 

 

VI.

THE EPO ACTING AS A PCT AUTHORITY – EURO-PCT APPLICATIONS

 

 

 

 

1.

Competence of the EPO acting as designated or elected Office

 

 

J 19/16 3.1.01 03.08.17

80

 

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EPC Articles

EPC Implementing Rules

Case Law of the Enlarged Board

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