Case Law

T0754/13 Clear, concise and supported !

This decision is a good refresher on how the EPO looks at the requirements of clarity under Article 84 EPC. The appeal lies from a decision of the Examining Division.

2. Clarity (Article 84 EPC)

Article 84 EPC requires that "The claims shall define the matter for which protection is sought. They shall be clear and concise and be supported by the description".


T1474/12 Clear clarity

This is an opposition appeal case, where the Board had to decide on a (in my view) creative way of alleged lack of clarity. The Board did not accept the argument by the opponent:

R4.1 Claim 1 differs from claim 1 as granted in that the expression "sample of bodily fluid" is replaced by the expression "sample of urine, plasma or serum".


T0607/10 Late filed arguments

Late filed amendments or prior art have been subject of many decisions and case law has developed around that subject. For late filed arguments it is not always clear whether those have/are to be admitted into the proceedings or not. This decision deals with just that and I will limit this post to the Catchword which is clear and reads as follows:


T0833/11 Closer or equally close ?

One of the underlying principles of the problem solution approach (or at least that’s my understanding of it) is that if an invention is non-obvious over the closest prior art, then the invention is non-obvious over any further and more remote prior art.

However, determining which prior art is the closest prior art is often the subject of discussion and quite some case law has developed on it over the years.


T0046/10 Inter partes but without the other party

This decision contains some interesting procedural aspects on opposition-appeal proceedings

In first instance opposition proceedings patent EP1488468 was revoked. The patentee filed an appeal against this decision.

Then, during the appeal proceedings the opponent withdrew its opposition. 

In paragraph 2 of the Reasons the Board summarises the legal situation which was then created (freely translated from German):


T2026/10 Disclosed, but not enabling

This decision deals with an appeal against the decision of the Examining Division.

Claim 1 of the application reads:

1.   A dispersion comprising porous inorganic oxide particles, wherein the particles have

a) a median particle size in the range of 0.05 to 3μm; and

b) porosity such that when an aqueous dispersion of the particles is dried at least 0.5 ml/g of pore volume as measured by BJH nitrogen porosimetry is from pores having a pore size of 50 nm (600 Å) or smaller.


T0317/10 Yoghurt in your hair is not inventive !

This decision deals with an opposition against a patent directed to a hair styling composition comprising, inter alia, spray dried yoghurt. According to the patent such compositions result in improved hair setting. It is furthermore mentioned that properties of hair such as manageability, shine, volume, body and elasticity are improved, too. The patent contains formulation examples, but does not provide any experimental data in support of these alleged improvements.


T0775/12 Don't be late !

This is an opposition appeal case where in first instance the opposed patent was revoked. The proprietor appealed the decision and filed several (new) requests with its statement setting out the grounds of appeal. The 1st auxiliary request is identical to the main request as was discussed during the oral proceedings. 
The opponent (respondent) did not submit any arguments in view of Article 123(2) EPC until the oral proceedings before the Board. The Board did not appreciate this and used its discretion not to admit these arguments at such a late stage in the proceedings.



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