Is consent to oral proceedings as videoconference required from all parties?
In a new referral in T1807/15, the EPO Board of Appeal refers the following question the Enlarged Board of Appeal for decision: “Is the conduct of oral proceedings in the form of a videoconference compatible with the right to oral proceedings as enshrined in Article 116(1) EPC if not all of the parties to the proceedings have given their consent to the conduct of oral proceedings in the form of a videoconference?”
As will be recalled, Article 116(1) EPC “enshrines” that
Oral proceedings shall take place either at the instance of the European Patent Office if it considers this to be expedient or at the request of any party to the proceedings. However, the European Patent Office may reject a request for further oral proceedings before the same department where the parties and the subject of the proceedings are the same.Read more
This new referral seems very likely to become G1/21.