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Appeal proceedings

Appeal proceedings

Has your European patent been revoked or maintained in an amended form after facing an opposition? Or perhaps you have filed an opposition seeking revocation of a competitor’s patent and it has been maintained in a form not suitable for your business . Or has your European application been refused during examination proceedings? All these situations may lead you to consider appealing the decision.

An appeal in opposition prompts a review of the decision given by the opposition division and thereby provides the losing party an opportunity to challenge that decision.

During examination the examiner refuses to grant a patent, and launching an appeal is the last resort for the applicant to obtain a grant (apart from filing a divisional application and starting all over again at a substantial cost).

Experts with appeal proceedings
NLO can support you with its broad experience in appeals both in examination and opposition proceedings. NLO has experts in many technical fields and as a firm we are specialised in handling complex appeal cases. Our patent attorneys have successfully represented a wide range of clients before the Board of Appeal. With our technical expertise and our vast appeal experience, we are very well-positioned to determine the best strategy that will give your case the best chance of success.

Our patent attorneys have successfully represented a wide range of clients before the Board of Appeal.

The Board of Appeal

The Board of Appeal has its own set of Rules of Procedure, which put strict requirements on how appeal proceedings must be pursued. For example, the grounds of appeal must contain the appellant’s complete case, and late-filed submissions are only very reluctantly allowed in the procedure. Therefore, appellants should draft their submissions with great care. It is at the Board’s discretion to accept any new submission during the appeal proceedings. Many written and unwritten rules of appeal proceedings need to be considered, and failing to abide by them could be devastating for the appellant, who may lose more than necessary.

Appeal in Opposition proceedings

The Rules of Procedure are applied particularly stringently in opposition appeals, when several parties with opposing interests are involved. It requires extensive experience to carefully navigate the balance between successfully representing the appealing party without giving the other side leverage to undermine your case, while at the same time adhering to the stringent rules of procedure.

Appeal in Examination proceedings

Also in examination, it is highly recommended to follow the Rules of Procedure. The Board of Appeal is typically strict as regards late filing during oral proceedings. This is especially true when a submission brings about a new case or (auxiliary) claim sets are presented that could have been filed and defended before the examiner.