28th dec, 2014

Trouble brewing in EPO

Just before Christmas EPO President Benoit Battistelli and Chair of the Administrative Council at the European Patent Office gave an interview with Managing Intellectual Property.
The reason was recent unrest at the office: employee strikes due to a move to performance based pay and the administrative removal of a judge of the Boards of Appeal. The situation must have been so grave that the top team of the EPO deemed it necessary to address some of the concerns floating around.
See the interview here.
The duo dismisses any concerns addressed in this matter, and is not challenged very hard by the interviewer. The interview briefly addresses the issue about the controversial removal of the BoA member. The interview does not comment on the letter from 7 external members of the BoA expressing their concern of the way the suspension have been handled. In the letter it is stated that “ we would wish to remind the President that the BoA are in all material respects courts and its members judges. They are not his staff” . One of the seven is the Danish Judge Henrik Rothe.
Addressing the concerns that the EPO will not be able to service the unitary patent the president reassures the readers that this is not the case.
Is the trouble wisked away by the statement from the Administrative Council and the interview or will the trouble continue in 2015??

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