The IP Federation has responded to the European Patent Office’s (EPO) public consultation on the Guidelines. We focus on Part F, Chapter IV – Claims (Art. 84 and formal requirements) of the Guidelines for Examination in the European Patent Office, March 2021 edition.
In a nutshell, the IP Federation objects to the changes made in the March 2021 edition of the EPC Guidelines which adversely affect an applicant’s ability to include disclosure in the specification at their own discretion that may not directly relate to the claimed subject matter but that may nonetheless be desirable. These changes are not necessary to solve any problem posed by the previous version of the Guidelines, have no support in EPO case law, will create complications which will make the process of patent examination in the EPO less efficient, will therefore give rise to delay, and will create problems of interpretation in the litigation of European patents.
This we urge the EPO to reconsider its amendments to EPC Guidelines F-IV-4.3(iii) and to restore the previous version.
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