18 April 2018
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This is the first Annual report of the Boards of Appeal since a major structural reform was introduced on 1 January 2017.
Topics covered in the 2017 report include the implementation of the structural reform, the measures taken to increase timeliness and reduce the number of pending cases, the contacts during the year between the Boards and national courts, users and representatives, and finally information on the case law of the Boards of Appeal. Statistics on various aspects of the appeal procedure are also provided.
The President of the Boards of Appeal, Carl Josefsson, comments:
"Despite the organisational challenges created by the removal to new offices in Haar, the Boards of Appeal were able to increase their performance in 2017, while at the same time maintaining the high quality that users rightfully expect from a judicial authority which renders decisions at final instance."
In 2017, the number of technical cases settled increased by 2.5%, and the number of technical cases on which the Boards started work (i.e. in which a first communication was issued) rose by 12.4%. This was in line with the five-year objective set by the President of the Boards of Appeal, which is that, by 2022, 90% of cases will be settled within 30 months and the number of pending cases will have dropped from the current 9000 to below 7000.
The intention of the President of the Boards of Appeal is that this objective will be achieved by increases in the efficiency of the Boards of Appeal and the allocation of additional posts to the Boards. Efficiency measures which are either already in place or currently in preparation include specific objective-setting, developing internal timelines for the main stages of the appeal procedure, and revising the Rules of Procedure of the Boards of Appeal.