This case concerns a referral to the Enlarged Board of Appeal regarding the interpretation of the term ‘pending application’ in the wording of Rule 25(1) EPC 1973. In the appealed decision from the receiving section, the receiving section held that from the date of the refusal by an examining division an application was no longer pending as long as during the time limit for filing an appeal no appeal is filed. In contrast, the appellant asserted that the term ‘pending application’ should be construed that the pending status of an application only ends when the refusal becomes final.

The Legal Board of Appeal held that the wording of the EPC and the relevant case law of the Boards of Appeal as well as national law cannot provide a conclusive answer as to how the term ‘pending application’ should be interpreted. Hence, the following question was referred to the Enlarged Board of Appeal: is an application which has been refused by a decision of the Examining Division thereafter still pending within the meaning of Rule 25 EPC 1973 (Rule 36(1) EPC) until the expiry of the time limit for filing a notice of appeal, when no appeal has been filed?

The full summary of this case has been published on Kluwer IP Law.


To make sure you do not miss out on regular updates from the Kluwer Patent Blog, please subscribe here.

Kluwer IP Law

The 2022 Future Ready Lawyer survey showed that 79% of lawyers think that the importance of legal technology will increase for next year. With Kluwer IP Law you can navigate the increasingly global practice of IP law with specialized, local and cross-border information and tools from every preferred location. Are you, as an IP professional, ready for the future?

Learn how Kluwer IP Law can support you.

Kluwer IP Law
This page as PDF