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EPC 2000 - has arrived

EPC 2000 - has arrived

06/12/07

On 13th December 2007, EPC 2000, the most comprehensive overhaul of the European Patent Convention (EPC), will enter into effect.

In brief this will:

- allow filing in any language or simply by reference to the bibliographic data if an earlier application

- remove the need for "Swiss-type claims" for second (and subsequent) medical use inventions

- expand the relevance of earlier co-pending EP applications as prior art

- provide for post-grant central limitation of the claims at the EPO

- allow for referral of Board of Appeal decisions to the Enlarged Boatd of Appeal in limited circumstances

- provide guidance that, when considering questions of infringement, the national courts should take due account of equivalents to claimed features

- state that privilge applies to communications between European Patent Attorneys and their clients

- increase the availability of restoration or further processing as a means for overcoming missed deadlines.

From the same date, UK national law will be amended for consistency regarding second medical use claims, co-pending EP applications and post-grant amendment.

For further information please refer to the associated news item on this site or contact us with your enquiry.