Thursday, 27 December 2012

We have prepared an 18-page document with updates to the Pre-Exam Book (EQE2013 Edition) in view of: 
The update document can be downloaded from

Note: the bold-face text in this message is clickable.

Friday, 2 November 2012

Tutors' Report on the EQE 2012 Papers [and comments on 2013 paper formats]

For the first time ever, the EQE tutors have made minutes of their meeting with the EQE tutors in September. I have combined and edited the comments to make single report:

In addition to documenting the discussions with the Examination Committees, comments are provided on the Compendium answers and there are some comments about the changes to the paper in 2013.

Wednesday, 9 May 2012

The results are in...

Earlier today the EPO published the official results and the examiner's report of the first ever EQE pre-exam. The results have turned out to be completely different from what we are used to in the EQE. The guinea pigs of this first year's pre-exam show an astonishing passing rate of 98.7%. Only 5 out of 390 candidates did not manage to score at least 50 out of 100 marks. Four candidates did not make any error at all.

With an average score of 84.1, a median score of 87 and almost every candidate passing, the pre-exam seems to have failed its main objective. According to the exam committee, the goal of the pre-exam was to filter out the ill-prepared candidates and serial resitters that take up so much of their valuable correction time (and energy).
However, the current results can only be interpreted in two ways. Either the pre-exam was too easy and the ill-prepared candidates will sit the main exam in 2013 with the usual lack of preparation and a little bit more confidence, or there never have been many ill-prepared candidates and the low pass rates for the main exam are primarily caused by difficult exams.

Thursday, 15 March 2012

Dates EQE 2013 announced by EPO

The EPO accounced the European qualifying examination 2013. Much to our surprise, the exam is not scheduled in the first week of March, but in the last week of February!

The pre-examination will be held on 25 February 2013.
Complete applications to register and enrol for the pre-examination (Form 51015 or Form 51016 plus enclosures) must be received by the Examination Secretariat no later than 11 June 2012.

The main examination will be held from 26 to 28 February 2013.
Complete applications to register and enrol for the main exanimation (Form 51015) must be received by the Examination Secretariat no later than 5 September 2012.

Candidates awaiting results from the EQE 2012 (pre-examination or main examination) may not  file their application until after their results are known.

The relevant date for checking the period of professional acvtivity is 1 March 2013.
Thus, if you are a trainee patent attorney who would have completed your 2-year (pre-exam) or 3-year (main exam) period only on March 1, 2013, and not yet on the actual date of the exam, this does not prevent you from enrolling.

Friday, 9 March 2012

Pre-Exam 2012 - our thoughts and preliminary answers

At DeltaPatents we like to do the exams ourselves before the official answers come out.
But there are always discussions on what the correct answers are - we do not know for sure, and sometimes we all miss a hint in the question.

We now have the first example of  the topics that the Pre-Exam actually tests.
The level seems to be similar to the second pre-exam mock of Sept. 2012.

The 10 legal questions were straightforward, and we believe the answers are:
1: T; T; T; F
2: T; F; T; T
3: T; F; T; F
4: F; T; T; F
5: F; F; F; T
6: F; F; F; T
7: F; F; T; F
8: T; F; F; F
9: F; T; F; F
10: T; F; F; F

For the claim analysis, some questions led to a lot of discussion. The answer depends on how you read the claims, the application and the prior art. If you think about things too long, then everything can become unsure, particularly as some of our tutors have practical drafting experience in this area.
11: T;  F;  F;  T
12: T;  T;  T;  T
13: T?; T;  T;  T
14: T;  T;  F;  T
15: T;  ??; T;  F
16: T?; T;  F;  F  
17: T;  F;  T;  F
18: T?; F;  T?; F
19: F;  T;  T;  F
20: F;  T;  F?; T

13.1: depends on interpretation of “on”. If = “directly on”, statement is False. If it includes embodiments where something is in between (as butter can be in between the cheese and the bread in a cheese sandwich), the statement is True. Majority went for T

15.2: first part of statement is true. But may D2 be used to support the “not indispensable”-argument?. After consulting the Guidelines, we are unsure.

16.1: depends on if “a complete layer” may be considered the same as “continuous … portion completely covering” (D1, [008], 1st line). D1, [008], 2nd sentence, does equate “discontinuous portion” to “incomplete layer”. But is this enough.  If the same, no extension and statement is False; if different, it is True. We tend to T.

18.1: It may hint to the solution, or the problem should not refer to the closure as a whole, but rather to the sealing part. But statement reflects most directly the technical effect given in Question 18. We tend to T.

18.3: Based on Question 18 alone, tampering detection does not seem to be the objective technical problem. But based on D1, [012], last line, enabling tampering detection is the objective technical problem, which is solved by the characterizing feature because of the effect given in question 18. We tend to T.

20.3: As claim X is a specific embodiment of claim IX, and 19.3 is a valid argument for claim IX, 20.3 shall be a valid argument for claim X. The at least two adhesive dots form a discontinuous adhesive portion (D1, [0078], last sentence). But the argument may not be sufficiently specific for claim X: statement would then be F. We tend to F