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Guidelines for Examination

 
 

3. Stay of proceedings when a referral to the Enlarged Board of Appeal is pending

Where a referral to the Enlarged Board of Appeal is pending and the outcome of examination or opposition proceedings depends entirely on the decision ofanswer to the questions referred to the Enlarged Board of Appeal, the proceedings willmay be stayed only upon by the Examining or Opposition Division on its own initiative or on request of at least one ofa party or the parties. The party/ies will be informed of the stay of proceedings as well as of the continuation of the proceedings after a stay. During the stay of proceedings, a PACE request will have no effect. After their resumption, proceedings may (again) be accelerated (E‑VII, 3.2). Where the proceedings are not stayed, they will be decided according to existing practice (see OJ EPO 2006, 538).

A stay of proceedings due to dependency on a referral to the Enlarged Board of Appeal is to be distinguished from a stay of proceedings pursuant to Rule 14 (see E‑VI, 2).