What can people, in particular citizens of Munich and Bavaria, do if they feel that elementary constitutional rights are infringed, not somewhere abroad and far away, but literally next door, at the Isar river banks or in the Pschorrhöfe building? Unfortunately, this is no rhetorical question. If such things happen in the jurisdiction of German…

Part II (- sorry, this will be a bit longer, but a lot has accumulated recently…) How does the EPO in 2018 fare with regard to the criterion “expert, well supported and motivated staff”? To what extent is it already reality, and to what “vision” in the sense of fancy? In my personal view, it…

Part I – Introduction The word “vision” has a couple of fascinatingly different meanings. There is a famous saying by Helmut Schmidt, Germany’s chancellor from 1974-1982, who recommended to anyone proclaiming that he/she had a vision to see a doctor. According to wiktionary, vision may mean: 1. The sense or ability of sight. 2. Something…

Recently, “New Investment Guidelines of the European Patent Office” (CA/F 18/17 Rev. 1) was published among the “Administrative Council documents” on the EPO web site. The Investment Guidelines relate to management of the treasury of the EPO and outline a more flexible approach for investing the funds in the treasury. In particular, rather than being…

The Administrative Tribunal of the ILO (ILOAT), which decided a series of cases concerning the EPO in its 125th session last week, dismissed a complaint of the former SUEPO trade union chairman Elizabeth Hardon against her downgrading by EPO president Benoit Battistelli. After the suicide of an EPO employee in May 2012, Hardon, at the…

An EPO board of appeal observed that a careful opponent that is economically active in the same field as the patentee should search for internal evidence of public prior use before filing an opposition. If such internal evidence is filed belatedly, the fact the search was started only after filing the opposition per se is…

The European Patent Office has been established by an international agreement, the European Patent Convention. All functioning patent systems that I am aware of are based on a structural principle that is basically simple: There is a patent office that receives and examines patent applications and grants patents for those that satisfy the requirements of…

EPO president Benoit Battistelli has strengthened the overall position of the European Patent Organisation, but the social problems cloud these achievements. Christoph Ernst, chairman of the EPO Administrative Council (AC), has said this in an interview with the German legal website JUVE. According to Ernst, who has been AC member for years and succeeded Jesper…