Patent revocation

Revocation of a patent in Europe and Germany

1. Where do I have to file a request for patent revocation?

If the term for filing an opposition has expired, the patent may still be revoked in cancellation proceedings. The request for patent revocation against a German patent or the German part of a European patent is to be lodged at the Federal Patent Court.

2. On which grounds may request for patent revocation be based on?

The revocation of a patent can only be based on specific grounds. These are:

  • The patent’s subject-matter is not an invention (no technical teaching or lack of feasibility).
  • The patent’s subject-matter lacks patentability (lack of novelty or inventive step).
  • The patent’s subject-matter is not sufficiently disclosed.
  • The patent‘s subject-matter extends beyond the content of the application as filed.
  • The patent‘s subject-matter has been unlawfully withdrawn from the inventor.

Moreover, a request for patent revocation may also be based on the ground that the scope of the patent has been unlawfully extended. Howver, such request may not be based on any other grounds, such as a lack of clarity, a lack of unity of invention, or contradictions within the description of the patent.

Please feel free to contact us in case of questions about revocation of a patent. Our German and European patent attorneys in Munich are looking forward to advising you. Please contact us.

3. How much do revocation proceedings cost?

Patent revocation proceedings are held before a civil court, wherein the court fees and attorney fees are calculated depending on the amount in dispute. The underlying party has to bear the costs of the proceedings, including the cost of the other party. The amount in dispute is typically set to about € 500,000 or € 1,000,000 by the court. Based on a value of € 500,000, the cost risk for the first instance (Federal Patent Court) is approximately € 50,000 and for the second instance (Bundesgerichtshof) around € 68,000. In case of a value of € 1,000,000, the cost risk will be about € 79,000 and € 102,000 for the first and second instance, respectively.

Thus, revocation proceedings involve a considerable cost risk.

For further information on patent cancellation proceedings, please contact one of our partners or give us a call. Our European patent attorneys in Munich are looking forward to hearing from you.