Originally published in OJ EPO 2012, 14:
Communication from the Vice-President of Directorate-General 3 of the European Patent Office dated 15 December 2011 concerning the electronic authentication of decisions of the boards of appeal of the EPO
According to Rule 102, first sentence, EPC, decisions of the boards of appeal shall be authenticated by the Chairman of the Board of Appeal and by the competent employee of the registry of the Board of Appeal, either by their signature or by any other appropriate means. This rule thus also allows for authentication by electronic means.
In practice, decisions of the boards of appeal are increasingly authenticated by such electronic means, thereby replacing authentication by signature. Where a decision is authenticated electronically, the indication "decision electronically authenticated" will appear directly below the names of the Chairman of the Board of Appeal and of the competent employee of the registry of the Board of Appeal.