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Institute of Professional Representatives before the European Patent Office
 

Today, the Enlarged Board of Appeal of the European Patent Office has issued the order of its decision in case G 1/21

July 16, 2021

The Enlarged Board of Appeal (EBA) has today released its order in case G1/21. According to the order:

“During a general emergency impairing the parties' possibilities to attend in-person oral proceedings at the EPO premises, the conduct of oral proceedings before the boards of appeal in the form of a videoconference is compatible with the EPC even if not all of the parties to the proceedings have given their consent to the conduct of oral proceedings in the form of a videoconference”.

epi very much regrets that the EBA has not answered in the order the question referred by Board 3.5.02 (Is the conduct of oral proceedings in the form of a videoconference compatible with the right to oral proceedings as enshrined in Article 116(1) EPC if not all of the parties to the proceedings have given their consent to the conduct of oral proceedings in the form of a videoconference?). This question is indeed of tremendous importance for all users of the patent system in Europe. epi hopes that the reasons for the decision when issued in writing will allow to understand the legal situation outside a general emergency as defined in the order.

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