If the EPO notes that in respect of one or more of the designated Contracting States the content of an earlier European patent application forms part of the state of the art pursuant to Art. 54(3), two situations could arise:
The substance of H‑III, 4.2, applies mutatis mutandis in opposition proceedings. The transitional provisions to the EPC 2000 require that, if the underlying application for a patent was filed before the date of entry into force of the EPC 2000, the conflicting prior art under Art. 54 be treated in accordance with EPC 1973, e.g. taking into account Art. 54(3) and Art. 54(4) of EPC 1973 with the system of common designations. However for patents for which the underlying application was filed on or after the date of entry into force of the EPC 2000, the provisions of the latter apply, in which the system of common designations for conflicting prior art under Art. 54(3) no longer exists. Accordingly, different texts for different states are not acceptable any more for such patents (see F‑II, 4.3 and H‑III, 4.2).