T 0905/90 (Fee-reduction) of 13.11.1992

European Case Law Identifier: ECLI:EP:BA:1992:T090590.19921113
Date of decision: 13 November 1992
Case number: T 0905/90
Application number: 84301975.3
IPC class: C07F 9/38
Language of proceedings: EN
Distribution: A
Download and more information:
Decision text in EN (PDF, 986.826K)
Documentation of the appeal procedure can be found in the Register
Bibliographic information is available in: EN
Versions: OJ | Published
Title of application: -
Applicant name: Albright
Opponent name: Monsanto
Board: 3.3.01
Headnote: 1. Rule 6(3) EPC must be narrowly construed so as to preclude fee reductions in cases where only inessential parts of the first act of the relevant proceedings had been filed in an authorised non- official language (cf. point 3, first paragraph, of the Reasons for the Decision).
2. The essential nature of the first act in the relevant proceedings is the decisive criterion for entitlement to fee reduction under Rule 6(3) EPC, and not the linguistic sensitivity of such an act (G 6/91, OJ EPO 1992, 491 followed; cf. point 3, second paragraph, of the Reasons for the Decision).
Neither a request for fee reduction, nor a notification that only a reduced fee had been paid is an essential part of the first act of the relevant proceedings (cf. point 4 of the Reasons for the Decision).
3. Rule 6(3) EPC does not permit the advance withholding by a party of the amount provided for by Article 12(1) of the Rules relating to Fees (cf. points 6, last paragraph, and 7 of the Reasons for the Decision).
4. A 20% shortfall in any relevant fee, being the amount
specified by Article 12(1) of the Rules relating to Fees is not "small" within the meaning of Article 9(1) of these Rules (deviation from T 290/90, OJ EPO 1992, 368; cf. point 10 of the Reasons for the Decision).
5. The legitimate expectation of parties as to the future conduct of organs of the EPO can arise not only from express statements made by duly authorised officials acting in a particular case, or from official EPO announcements, but also from a settled relevant EPO administrative practice (cf. point 5 of the Reasons for the Decision).
All changes in these practices should be officially announced at the earliest possible moment in order to avoid misleading the parties (cf. point 7 of the Reasons for the Decision).
Relevant legal provisions:
European Patent Convention 1973 Art 14(4)
European Patent Convention 1973 Art 99(1)
European Patent Convention 1973 Art 125
European Patent Convention 1973 R 6(3)
Rules relating to fees Art 9(1)
Keywords: Fee reduction - inessential parts of proceedings in non-official language
Fee reduction - meaning "small" in Rules relating to Fees
Good faith - relevance of general conduct of EPO
Good faith - Need of timely announcement by EPO of changes in practice
Good faith - EPO practice relaxed
Good faith - appellant not mislead, opposition inadmissible
Equality of treatment
Catchwords:

-

Cited decisions:
-
Citing decisions:
G 0001/97
J 0027/92
J 0014/95
J 0015/95
J 0016/95
J 0017/95
J 0024/95
J 0025/95
J 0012/05
J 0013/05
J 0019/16
T 0188/97
T 0739/05
T 0482/06
T 1607/08
T 0041/09
T 0642/12

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