T 0182/22 02-05-2023
SCREWDRIVER FOR DENTAL IMPLANTOLOGY
Straumann Holding AG
Universal Ball Head, S.L.
I. With the decision posted on 18 November 2021 the opposition division decided to reject the opposition against European patent No. EP 3 260 079.
II. The opponent filed an appeal against that decision.
III. The appellant (opponent) requested that the decision under appeal be set aside and that the patent be revoked.
IV. In its letter dated 28 April 2023, the respondent (patent proprietor) requested revocation of the patent.
1. Pursuant to Article 113(2) EPC, the EPO shall examine, and decide upon, the European patent only in the text submitted to it, or agreed, by the patent proprietor of the patent.
2. Such an agreement cannot be deemed to exist where the patent proprietor no longer approves the text of the patent as granted and withdraws all pending requests. The Board understands the respondent's request that the patent be revoked to be an equivalent to a declaration that it no longer approves the text of the patent as granted and withdraws all pending claim requests (cf. T 186/84, Reasons 3, last sentence).
3. There is therefore no text of the patent on the basis of which the Board can consider the appeal. In these circumstances, the proceedings are to be terminated by a decision ordering revocation of the patent (Article 101 EPC), without examination as to patentability (see Case Law of the Boards of Appeal of the European Patent Office, 10th edition 2022, IV.D.2).
For these reasons it is decided that:
1. The decision under appeal is set aside.
2. The patent is revoked.