01.11.18

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126th Session of the ILO Administrative Tribunal is Around the Corner and EPO Staff Representatives Will Have Their Cases Heard Soon

Posted in Europe, Patents at 10:29 am by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

Remember that it can take many years for ILO to process EPO cases and there’s a massive backlog

ILO Administrative Tribunal Sessions

Summary: With infinitesimal chances of justice inside the EPO, workers turn to ILO, which has fallen really badly behind and is unable to correct injustices in a timely manner; there is, however, still hope

THE EPO will no doubt play a big role in the next (and imminent) session of the ILO Administrative Tribunal. It was the “big story” of the last session, where half the decisions concerned the EPO and several were about Judge Corcoran.

“Battistelli and his cabal just want patents issued as fast as possible and with miminal scrutiny/challenge. EPO is becoming INPI or SIPO.”Based on the above tweets, which someone told us about, some former EPO staff representatives are going to have their cases heard and decided on. Also, based on this new article (just promoted by SUEPO), Ciaran McGinley's departure predates or precedes some profoundly inane organisational chaos. McGinley himself used to be in staff representation albeit people we heard from generally regarded him to be somewhat of a “sellout” (to top-level management). Here is the relevant portion from the article:

In an internal memo, the Staff Union of the EPO (SUEPO) has described the merger as a “disaster in the making”, arguing that it has split patent administration staff into much smaller units of around four to seven members, which are required to provide the same service as the much larger units, which contained around 15 to 20 staff, used before the merge.

To cope with rising workloads, 18 months ago the now ex-director of patent administration at the EPO, Ciaran McGinley implemented a structure of hubs in which staff were regrouped into large units with “sufficient manpower and expertise”, according to SUEPO.

Of the new structure, the memo said: “Such division into small units creates obvious issues of unequally distributed expertise (individual patent administration staff cannot master perfectly the many necessary procedures).”

“Even the patent administration procedures that until now were centralised in a dedicated unit, like the receiving office for WIPO in the EPO, will be decentralised to the small units … expertise will be much more diluted than before.”

The memo added: “To solve the problem they have created, management has decided to train intensively all patent administration staff in basically all procedures. This is taking place while patent administration staff is already struggling with the workload, further increasing work strain. In any event, one cannot reasonably expect that a hasty training will allow building up the necessary level of expertise in all the small teams.”

They don’t care about expertise; as we pointed out in several articles last night, Battistelli and his cabal just want patents issued as fast as possible and with miminal scrutiny/challenge. EPO is becoming INPI or SIPO. In other words, it is becoming the very opposite of what it was once renowned for.

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