GETTING STARTED: LEGAL BACKGROUND AND TECHNICAL REQUIREMENTS
Have a look at some information about the legal background and technical requirements for oral proceedings by videoconference:
BACKGROUND INFORMATION [Text]
In this training module, you will find training material, informing you on various relevant aspects relating to oral proceedings via videoconference in both examination and opposition proceedings.
Since April 2020, all oral proceedings before examining divisions are held by videoconference and since May 2020, the EPO has been conducting a pilot project for oral proceedings by videoconference before opposition divisions (see the relevant decision and notice and the decision concerning the extension and modification of the pilot project; see also continually updated information and the FAQ). Under the terms of the project, oral proceedings before opposition divisions are held by videoconference via Zoom. The oral proceedings held by videoconference apply for multiparty hearings including with/without interpretation and with/without taking evidence.
This training module, produced by the EPO in co-operation with the epi, starts with an introduction to the legal background and technical requirements for such online proceedings, then provides information on how to best advocate a case online and finally provides further information related to opposition via videoconference, including a recording of mock oral proceedings held by videoconference. The mock proceedings were conducted by a real EPO opposition division with experienced European patent attorneys including interpretation in the EPO official languages.
In the recordings, you will see how formalities are completed in oral proceedings held by videoconference via Zoom. For instance, you will see how:
- a videoconference is started with distributed participation
- the identity of the persons involved is checked
- participation by members of the public is facilitated
- the proceedings are opened
- submissions by email may be performed
- the proceedings are interrupted and resumed, e.g. for deliberation in non-public breakout rooms by the division
- decisions are announced and proceedings are closed.
Heli Pihlajamaa, Doris Thums, Britta Kley, Nataša Doslik, Theodora Butkowskyj-Walkiw, Hervé Chabus and Frédéric Bockstahl
Beth Marshall, Catherine Menes, Christoph B. Gyaja and Joachim Renken.
Emma Darwall Smith, Communication Collective
INTRODUCTORY REMARKS (Video, 3 min)
TECHNICAL SET UP & NETIQUETTE [Video, 8 mins]
UPDATE OCTOBER 2021 [Video, 1:00:42 hours]
The European Patent Academy organised a public online seminar on 8 October 2021 where an EPO lawyer and a patent examiner as well as a patent attorney shared their experiences on using Zoom for oral proceedings in examination and opposition via videoconference. In this video, they provide practical tips for successfully running a hearing online and answers to the questions from the audience.
UPDATE FEBRUARY 2022 [Video, 1:02:29 hours]
The European Patent Academy organised a public online seminar on 16 February 2022 where an EPO lawyer, a patent examiner and a patent attorney discussed the results of the user survey conducted in September 2021 and the main aspects of the November 2021 report on the Pilot project for oral proceedings in opposition by videoconference.
Listen to the EPO'S podcast on Oral Proceedings by Videoconference.
DELIVERING ONLINE: PRESENTATION SKILLS
Conducting oral proceedings online not only means adapting to a new technological set-up but also learning how to present a case in the most effective way in this new environment. This recording is relevant to patent attorneys who are fully conversant with how traditional in-person oral proceedings are held but need to adapt their rhetorical skills to the online environment. A trainer with a background in acting, a senior examiner with an extensive know-how in oral proceedings and an experienced patent attorney guide participants through this journey from in-person to online hearings.
ADVOCATING ONLINE BEFORE THE EPO [Video, 2:08 hours]
Nataša Doslik (EPO), Joachim Renken (epi), Emma Darwall Smith (Communication Collective)
OPPOSITION USING THE ZOOM PLATFORM
In this video, the functionalities of the Zoom platform are explained in the context of oral proceedings in opposition.
OPPOSITION USING THE ZOOM PLATFORM [Video, 19 mins]
PUTTING INTO PRACTICE: MOCK ORAL PROCEEDINGS
MOCK ORAL PROCEEDINGS
Have a look at the case underlying the oral proceedings:
THE CASE [Video, 7 mins]
MOCK-CASE USING THE ZOOM PLATFORM [Video, 1:04 hours; available in E/D/F]