J 0001/78 (Family name) of 2.3.1979

European Case Law Identifier: ECLI:EP:BA:1979:J000178.19790302
Date of decision: 02 March 1979
Case number: J 0001/78
Application number: -
IPC class: -
Language of proceedings: DE
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Bibliographic information is available in: DE | EN | FR
Versions: OJ
Title of application: -
Applicant name: von Füner
Opponent name: -
Board: 3.1.01
Headnote: A professional representative whose family name comprises a number of distinct parts ("von....") is not entitled to be entered on the list of professional representatives before the European Patent Office under a letter other than the first letter of the first part of his family name.
Relevant legal provisions:
European Patent Convention 1973 Art 134(1)
European Patent Convention 1973 Art 134(2)
European Patent Convention 1973 Art 163(1)
Keywords: Family name


Cited decisions:
Citing decisions:

Summary of Facts and Submissions

The appellant was entered on the list of professional representatives before the European Patent Office under the letter "V" as "von Füner, Alexander". The object of his appeal was to obtain a ruling which would enable him to be entered under the letter "F" as, for example, in the telephone directory. The decision found that the entry was made in accordance with the principles laid down by the President of the EPO whereby the full surname must be entered in alphabetical order. Under German law, former titles of nobility ("von") form part of the surname. The Board of Appeal confirmed that this guideline, which prescribes a uniform procedure for entering parts of names on the list, as well as the manner of its application, was in accordance with the terms of the Convention. The purpose of entry on the list was to confer upon the person whose name was entered the right to appear in the European patent grant procedure. A distinction had to be made between entry for the purposes of conferring a right and publication of the list, which latter was not prescribed in the Convention. The EPO intends to issue such a directory from time to time for the purposes of meeting public demand for information. In this directory, the person entered on the list could be allowed an additional entry under another letter should he so desire. This will also be done in the case of the appellant who has already filed a request to that effect. The appeal was therefore disallowed.

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