Tuesday, 6 December 2016

J 7/15 - Re-establishment for outside payment firm

The applicant uses an outside outside payment firm for paying the renewal fees, as well as an unrelated outside attorney for substantive patent work. The board is not unable to establish exactly why the renewal fees were not paid in time, but finds it sufficient that a historically reliable payment firm was used. 

Wednesday, 30 November 2016

G 1/15 (1) - Order from the Enlarged Board

The order of the decision of the Enlarged Board in the partial priority referral, G 1/15, was issued. The reasoned decision will be issued as soon as possible.

See file wrapper, and our earlier posts Poisonous or nothing wrong? and Referral: Mother poisonous for child?

Tuesday, 29 November 2016

T 628/14 - within time limit for making written submissions, but too late

In this opposition appeal, an opponent submitted new documents in response of the invitation to oral proceedings under Rule 116(1) EPC ("When issuing the summons, the European Patent Office shall draw attention to the points which in its opinion need to be discussed for the purposes of the decision to be taken. At the same time a final date for making written submissions in preparation for the oral proceedings shall be fixed. Rule 132 shall not apply. New facts and evidence presented after that date need not be considered, unless admitted on the grounds that the subject of the proceedings has changed."). The documents were not admitted in the proceedings as they were late filed and prima facie not relevant. The Board emphasized that the invitation for written submissions should, according to established case law, not be construed as an invitation to file new evidence or other material departing from the legal and factual framework of issues and grounds pleaded as established with the notice of opposition. The Board also reviewed that it is at the first-instance division's discretion to admit late filed documents or not, and concluded that the first instance division did not exercise its discretion in an unreasonable way as it had assessed the prima facie relevance of both documents.

Friday, 25 November 2016

T 792/12: the atmosphere of the oral proceedings


Sometimes, when I read a decision, I feel the atmosphere of the oral proceedings. Sometimes it gives you also some information about the "happiness" of the Board, the Appellant and/or the Respondent. This recently published decision presents some interesting information with respect to these themes and gives a view of the Board whether they have to sit silently in the room or whether they may interrupt the parties.

Tuesday, 22 November 2016

D 7/16 - "without comment as to the merits"

In appeals D 5/16 and D 7/16, the Board saw itself confronted with a  comment from the Exam Committee in the remittal letter from the Exam Secretariat. The comment addressed one of the statements under appeal of Pre-Exam 2016 and its answer. Despite the general requirement that remittance to the Board shall be done without comments to the merits -Art.109(2) EPC-, the Board seems to be puzzled what the aim of the Examination Committee was, and why/whether its comments were (not) taken into account in deciding on interlocutory revision.

Sunday, 20 November 2016

T 1802/13 Medical imaging - is presenting the information technical?

In this decision it needs to be settled if in medical imaging the claimed superposition of a leadwire has a technical effect. The Board goes into the discussion of presentation of information, differentiating between what is presented and how it is presented (cognitive aspect). Regarding the technicality of the manner in which (i.e. "how") information is presented - the main issue to be established is whether the underlying user interface together with the manner in which cognitive content is presented credibly assists the user in performing a technical task by means of a continued and guided human-machine interaction process (basically related to the question "for what purpose" the content is presented). The Board decides that it is not derivable from the claim - beyond mere speculation - that it credibly brings about the technical effect of accurately predicting the electrodes' properties and providing that information to the surgeon in an efficient manner. The case is dismissed as lacking inventive step.

Tuesday, 15 November 2016

Gold standard poll results

In T 437/14 the board of appeal referred questions on disclaimers to the enlarged board. The central question is how the gold standard of G 2/10 is to be squared with the disclaimers that are allowed for accidental anticipations under G 1/03. The case has been discussed in the comments, and various directions were suggested in which the enlarged board could go.

The past two weeks we placed a poll at our blog in which our readers could make their predictions. Polling is now closed and the results are in.

So there is a clear majority that does not expect that G1/03 is any in danger. I'm looking forward to the enlarged board's decision to see how well this poll matches reality.