1.2.2 Interpretation of substantive patent law

In G 2/07 and G 1/08 (OJ 2012, 130 and 206) the Enlarged Board of Appeal held that there could be no "legitimate expectation" that an interpretation of a substantive provision governing patentability given in a decision of the boards of appeal will not be overruled in the future by the Enlarged Board, since recognising such an expectation as legitimate would undermine the function of the Enlarged Board. This holds particularly true for issues on which there is no solid body of decisions all to the same effect but where instead the relevant jurisprudence consists only of a very limited number of individual decisions.

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