11.6.1 Key features in patent proceedings
The primary objective of proceedings before the Boards of Appeal is to review the decision under appeal in a judicial manner.45 As mentioned above in Section 126.96.36.199, the Boards of Appeal constitute the first and final judicial instance in the procedures before the EPO. In this capacity, they review appealed decisions on points of law and fact.
Parties may amend their cases during appeal proceedings, which also includes the possibility for the applicant or patent proprietor to amend their patent application or patent. However, as appeal proceedings progress, the possibilities for parties to amend their cases become increasingly limited. This has been coined the “convergent approach” and is described in Section 11.6.4 below.