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Guidelines for Examination


4.5 Technical problem and its solution

The invention as claimed should be disclosed in such a way that the technical problem, or problems, with which it deals can be appreciated and the solution can be understood. To meet this requirement, only such details should be included as are necessary for elucidating the invention.

To elucidate the nature of the solution according to the independent claims, either the characterising portion of the independent claims is repeated or referred to, or the substance of the features of the solution according to the relevant claims is reproduced.

In cases where the subject-matter of a dependent claim can be understood either by the wording of the claim itself or by the description of a way of performing the invention, no additional explanation of this subject-matter will be necessary. A mention in the description that a particular embodiment of the invention is set out in the dependent claim will then be sufficient.

When there is doubt, however, as to whether certain details are necessary, the examiner should not insist on their excision. It is not necessary, moreover, that the invention be presented explicitly in problem-and-solution form. Any advantageous effects which the applicant considers the invention to have in relation to the prior art should be stated, but this should not be done in such a way as to disparage any particular prior product or process. Furthermore, neither the prior art nor the applicant's invention should be referred to in a manner likely to mislead. This might be done e.g. by an ambiguous presentation which gives the impression that the prior art had solved less of the problem than was actually the case. Fair comment as referred to in F‑II, 7.3 is, however, permitted. Regarding amendment to, or addition of, a statement of problem, see H‑V, 2.4.