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Applications for Petitions for Review at the EPO do not have a have a high success rate. Of the 105 currently-available Decisions relating to Petitions for Review, the vast majority have been found to be inadmissible; only four have resulted in a successful outcome for the applicant (i.e the decision under review being set aside) – R15/11, R21/11, R3/10 and R7/09, and one in a successful interim decision for the Petitioner, with the final decision still pending – R19/12, putting the current hit rate at just under 5 %.
Decision R19/12 issued in the last month or so, and makes for interesting reading. The Decision is only available in German – mine’s somewhat rusty, so there’s a (very!) crude machine translation here for anyone who is interested to see it*. It isn’t going to be affecting practice for any EPA’s, but it will have a significant impact on internal organisation at the EPO.
As well as taking a look at the reasons for the success-so-far of R19/12, this post will also delve a little deeper into the four successful Petitions to see how they come to succeed, and see what became of the patents after the proceedings were reopened… (more…)