Q. Continuation of the opposition proceedings by the EPO
R. 84 EPC provides for the continuation of opposition proceedings by the EPO of its own motion. This may happen in the following circumstances: where the patent has lapsed or been surrendered and the opponent requests continuation of the opposition proceedings (R. 84(1) EPC); in the event of the death or legal incapacity of an opponent and where the opposition has been withdrawn (R. 84(2) EPC). In the case of a withdrawal of the opposition during the opposition appeal proceedings, there are a number of procedural consequences which depend on the party status of the opponent and which do not permit the exercise of discretion as to whether or not opposition appeal proceedings are continued (see in this chapter III.Q.3.3.).