Thursday, 3 March 2016

C 2016: First impressions?

To all who sat the C-paper today:

What are your first impressions to this year's C-paper?
Any general or specific comments?

Was the number of claims as expected, or more, or less? And the number of prior art documents?
Were the various attack types well balanced - novelty, inventive step, added subject-matter, ...?
Was the described technology well understandable? For electronics/electricity attorneys, mechanics attorneys, chemists, biotech attorneys, ...?

How many marks do you expect to have scored?
What is your expectation of the pass rate and the average score?
How did this year's paper compare to the 2013, 2014 and 2015 papers (assuming your practiced those)

The paper and our answers

Copies of the paper will be provided on this blog as soon as we have received copies of the papers, in all three languages here (English, French and German).

The core of our answers will be given as soon as possible in a separate blog post.

We look forward to your comments!
Comments are welcome in any official EPO language, not just English. So, comments in German and French are also very welcome!

Please do not post your comments anonymously - it is allowed, but it makes responding more difficult and rather clumsy ("Dear Mr/Mrs/Ms Anonymous of 03-03-2015 03:03"), whereas using your real name or a pseudonym is more personal, more interesting and makes a more attractive conversation. You do not need to log in or make an account - it is OK to just put your (nick) name at the end of your post.

Please post your comments as to first impressions and general remarks to this blog.
Please post responses to our answer (as soon as available) to the separate blog post with our answer.

Jelle, Sander, Nico, Joeri, Gregory


  1. First impression: Fair exam. It has a lot of information but also clear links for combining annexes for inventive step attacks. Only one (minor) point was very special. It seems as if it was expected to quote T 861/04 for the publication date of annex 5. I did not have time to look this information up during the exam.

  2. I could not attack Claims 3(1)A and 3(2)B in time sufficiently because I did not find the right D1-document.

    1. My solution:

      Cl1: Novelty (A2) + Inventive Step (A3/A4)
      Cl2: No valid date, violates Art. 123(2)
      Cl3: Inventive step for both embodiments with partial problem (A3/A4/A6)
      Cl4: Inventive step (A2/A6) -> remark: A3 cannot be closes prior art, see [0009])
      Cl5: Inventive step (A4/A5)
      Cl6: Inventive step (A4 alone) -> remark: I could not derive a problem from A1 and took it from A4 (toxic)

    2. Dear Manuel, I have got exact the same attacks as you! All the same! Shake hands!

  3. Here are my attacks

    claim 1: A2 novelty Art. 54(3) and IS A3+A4
    claim 2: Art. 123(2)
    claim 3-hock: IS A6+A3+A4
    claim 3-hoof: IS A6+A3+A4
    claim 4: Art 123(2)
    claim 5: IS A4+A5
    claim 6: IS A4 (only with combination of prior art included in A4 itself)

    Thanks for commenting.

    1. In view of the other comment, I recognize that my attacks on claim 3 starts from the wrong prior art document (but at least, I terminated the exam by this claims).
      For the rest, I think it was clear that claim 4 extend beyond the content of the application as filed...(only one of the fastening means is elastic although in the description, both of them should be elastic).

    2. The effective date of claim 4 is the filing date. So there is no possible A123(2) for it. A123(2) is for claims included after the filing date.

  4. - A6 is not closes prior art but Cl.3 - but A3. See also A3 [0011].
    - No priority for Cl. 4 but Art. 123(2) is fine.

    1. wrong for A123(2) and Claim 4.
      Claim 4 just doesn't take advantage of the priority date.

  5. Here my attacks:
    Claim 1: novelty A2
    Claim 2: Art. 123(2)
    Claim 3 (both embodiments): IS, partial psa with A3+A6+A4 (and in the end a quick second attack starting from A6 - I was quite long doubting what should be cpa for claim 3)
    Claim 4: IS, A2+A6
    Claim 5: IS, A5+A4 (problem: replacing toxic compound)
    Claim 6: novelty A2

  6. I thought it was a fair paper overall. One does not expect them to be easy and they all have their moments and this paper was no different.

    My attacks were:

    Cl. 1 A2 novelty
    Cl. 2 Art 123(2)
    Cl. 3 IS - A3+A6+A4
    Cl. 4 IS - A2+A6
    Cl. 5 IS - A5 + A4
    Cl. 6 IS - A2 + A4

    I am a little worried about Claim 5 as I think it should be A4 + A5 but I am confident I wrote something credible for all claims.

  7. My attacks were:
    Cl.1- Nov A2
    Cl.2 Art.123(2)
    Cl.3 IS A3+A4+A6
    Cl.4 A2+A6
    Cl. 5 IS A5+A4
    CL.6 Nov A4/ IS A4 (I had doubts about the novelty attack, and so I decided to additionally include the Inventive step attack)

    Good luck for everybody!. We will cross our fingers

  8. Did anyone use A7 in some way? I didn't.

    1. Dear Wolfie, I didn't use A7, neither. My theory is that the examiners will not spend a lot of energy to produce a material that you cannot use. But considering it is only one sentence, it should be OK for me to abandon it – the examiners didn’t waste too much energy anyway…

    2. I used A7 to get confused and loose way too much time on it...:-(

  9. I used it in an Art.123(2) attack for the description....but probably it´s wrong....

  10. And nobody thought on A5 as the c.p.a. for the inventive step attack of claims 1/3? I know it needed to be combined with more tan 2 documents, but the purpose was the same as the invention, i.e. cooling (and not A3). Also, it seemed to be the c.p.a. commented in the patent (A1).