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Law & practice

Official Journal May 2019

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Citation: OJ EPO 2019, A52
Online publication date: 31.5.2019

Communication from the Enlarged Board of Appeal concerning case G 3/19

In accordance with Article 112(1)(b) EPC, the President of the European Patent Office has referred the following points of law to the Enlarged Board of Appeal:

1. Having regard to Article 164(2) EPC, can the meaning and scope of Article 53 EPC be clarified in the Implementing Regulations to the EPC without this clarification being a priori limited by the interpretation of said article given in an earlier decision of the boards of appeal or the Enlarged Board of Appeal?

2. If the answer to question 1 is yes, is the exclusion from patentability of plants and animals exclusively obtained by means of an essentially biological process pursuant to Rule 28(2) EPC in conformity with Article 53(b) EPC which neither explicitly excludes nor explicitly allows said subject-matter?

The text of the referral in English is available on the EPO website under www.epo.org/law-practice/case-law-appeals/eba/pending.html.

The Enlarged Board of Appeal considering the referral will be composed as follows: C. Josefsson (Chairman), I. Beckedorf, T. Bokor, S. Nathanael, H. Rothe, G. Eliasson, W. Sieber.

Third parties are hereby given the opportunity to file written statements in accordance with Article 10 of the Rules of Procedure of the Enlarged Board of Appeal (OJ EPO 2015, A35) in one of the official languages of the EPO (English, French or German).

To ensure that any such statements can be given due consideration they should be filed by 1 October 2019 with the Registry of the Enlarged Board of Appeal, quoting case number G 3/19, and should be marked for the attention of Mr Wiek Crasborn (EBAamicuscuriae@epo.org).