Wednesday, 21 October 2009

T 217/07 - Boards May Still Apportion Costs

A 104 EPC, an article dealing with costs, has undergone some changes when the EPC was revised. Not all of these changes were purely cosmetic. In particular, A 104(1) does not refer to the Boards of appeal any more : (click to enlarge)


Does this mean that the Boards will not be able to order apportionment of costs under the EPC 2000 ? No, says the Board in decision T 217/07 :

A 104(1) of the revised EPC states “Each party to the opposition proceedings shall bear the costs it has incurred, unless the Opposition Division, for reasons of equity, orders, in accordance with the Implementing Regulations, a different apportionment of costs.” Although A 104(1) EPC does not refer to the boards of appeal any more (in contrast to A 104(1) EPC 1973), the boards of appeal still have the power to apportion costs according to A 104(1) EPC. This power stems from A 111(1) EPC. [7.2]

To read the whole decision, click here.