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Case Law of the Boards of Appeal

 
 
2.9.2 Reimbursement of appeal fee

For further details, see Chapter IV.E.8 "Reimbursement of appeal fees".

Under Art. 109(2) EPC 1973 a case had to be remitted to the boards of appeal without delay and without comments as to its merits if the decision under appeal was not rectified within a specified time after receipt of the statement of grounds of the appeal. Therefore, if further separate issues ­ such as the reimbursement of the appeal fee ­ arose out of the appeal, the department in charge of the case was obliged under Art. 109(2) EPC 1973 to take a separate decision on rectification before the end of this time limit as soon as it realised that a decision on any further issue could not be taken within that period (T 939/95, OJ 1998, 481). The time limit is currently three months.

Under R. 103(1)(b) EPC, the appeal fee shall be reimbursed if the appeal is withdrawn before the filing of the statement of grounds and before the period for filing that statement has expired. This is intended to go some way towards compensating for the lack of a cross-appeal facility - appeals filed as a precaution in case the other party appeals may be withdrawn if the other party does not file an appeal.