24 November 2021
In light of the ongoing coronavirus pandemic, travel restrictions and preventive health measures limiting the parties' possibilities to attend oral proceedings on its premises, the EPO has decided to further extend its pilot project for conducting oral proceedings in opposition by videoconference (VICO) until 31 May 2022. Where there are serious reasons against holding the oral proceedings in opposition by VICO, oral proceedings will be postponed until after that date.
The EPO is committed to improving the tools used for
conducting oral proceedings by VICO. It will continue to raise awareness and
provide additional training to parties so that VICO tools become as close an
approximation as possible to direct human interaction.