D2 2024: Spiders, mosquitos and silk

This year's D2 was a paper of 2 h 40 min (14:05 - 16:45 CET) and only 45 marks, together with D2 2023 the shortest D2s ever (or at lerast, since very long).

You will have met Mr. Wool, Xeracno, Prosilk, and Smart SA. You learned about harvesting spider silk, raising spiders, cannibalism between spiders and feeding spiders with tiger mosquitos. Even two species of spiders starred in the paper: AA (Aranea aurata) and AF (Aranea fortis)!

D1 2024: a 14-mark question to start with!

One of us sat the D paper today as a benchmarker and made some notes on the D1 paper that we share below. Note that these are just a few brief notes, and have not been reviewed yet by colleague tutor. We will post more extensive answers later, after our internal review. 

Today's D1 was again worth a total of 55 marks, distributed over 2 parts with a 30 minute break in between:

  • D1-1 had only 2 questions, for a total of 26 marks, and had to be done from 9:30-11:05. 
  • D1-2 also had 3 questions, for a total of 29 marks, and had to be done from 11:35-13:20.

D 2024: first impressions?

To all who sat the D-paper today:  

What are your first impressions to this year's D-paper? Any general or specific comments? 

How did this year's D-paper compare to the earlier online D papers of 2021 - 2023?
Were the D1 questions and the D2 part similar as to its subjects and difficulty as the last few years (apart from the ratio this year being 55:45 as in 2023, but different from 2022's 45:55, 2021's 50:50 or the earlier 40:60)? 
Did you appreciate the longer the questions (only 5 questions for 55 marks, and in the first part at least one question of 13 marks or more)?

Our paper D 2024 blog will be open for comments after the exam (5 March 2024, 16:45)

Good luck with paper D 2024!

Our EQE blogs will be open for your comments and opinions w.r.t. the Pre-ExamABand shortly after the exams. We aim to post our (provisional) answers to the various papers shortly after we have received a copy of the respective exam paper.

EQE 2024 exam schedule now available: Paper D

The "Information on the schedule for the EQE 2024 examination papers" (dated 27 July 2023) is now available on the EQE website

The EQE 2024 will take place online using the examination software Wiseflow, with substantially the same setup as the e-EQE/Online EQE of 2021, 2022 and 2023.

Paper D 2024 is split into three parts: 

  1. a first D1 part of two questions and 26 marks (1 h 35 min),
  2. a second D1 part of three questions and 29 marks (1 h 45 min), and
  3. a D2 part of 45 marks (2 h 40 min)

Once the time allowed for a part has elapsed, it will not be possible to go back to that part.

Note that the D1:D2 ratio is again 55:45, with more than half of the marks available for D1 and less than half for D2, so the D paper again has the emphasis on the legal questions (See here). As the first D1 part has 26 marks for only two questions, at least one of the D1 questions will be at least 13 marks and longer than ever before (D 2023 included an 11-mark question)!

W.r.t. D2, note a minor change compared to D 2023: the 45-mark D2 part now has 2 h 40 min, whereas it had 2 h 45 min in 2023 - the 5 minutes seem to have been allocated to the first D1 part.

Each part must be completed before the start of the next break, with the next part only becoming available after the break. Paper D lasts six hours.

No calendars will be provided (see here). No documents will be available for printing.

Further, in view of the amendments to Rule 126(2)/127(2)/131(2) EPC per 1 November 2023 (1 day after the legal cutoff date acc IPREE, i.e., 31 October 2023), refer tothis blog post

(Note that that the document may be subject to minor changes as testing continues. Please check the EQE website for updates)

Please feel invited to post your comments. You are allowed to post anonymously and do not need an account, but please give your name or a nickname for an easy and inter-human interaction.

D 2024: No 10 days anymore - unless you really want to (or stick to the version as defined in the REE/IPREE)!!!

The Supervisory Board of the EQE issued a decision on "Notification and time limit calculation" dated 26 June 2023:

"1. Candidates sitting the EQE 2024 (pre-examination and main examination) can use as legal basis Rules 126, 127 and 131 EPC as in force on 31 October 2023 or Rules 126, 127 and 131 EPC as in force on 1 November 2023.

2. In the main exam papers, the default Rules 126, 127 and 131 EPC to be applied are those in force on 1 November 2023. If the candidate chooses to apply Rules 126, 127 and 131 EPC as in force on 31 October 2023, this must be clearly indicated.

3. Candidate papers will be marked accordingly."

So when calculating time limits during Paper D 2024 that run from the (fictitious) date of notification of a document, you are free to use:

  • either the current "10-day rule" for deemed notification (with true date of receipt if received later) according to current Rule 126(2)/127(2) (as in force until 31/10/2023 in line with Rules 2 & 22 IPREE) - in which case you need to indicate that you use the version as in force in 31/10/2023; Guidelines E-II, 2.3 and 2.4
Our Q&A books "Basic Legal Questions for Pre-Exam and Paper D" and "Main Exam Questions for Paper D" provide time limit calculations for both versions of R.126(2)/127(2) for (almost) all questions involving time limits calculated from the notification of a document.

D2 2023: nappies getting wet...

This year's D2 was a paper of 2 h 45 min (14:00 - 16:45 CET) and only 45 marks, the shortest D2 ever (that I know of).

As in 2021 and 2022, the paper had to be taken fully from the screen in Wiseflow - nothing was printable. The pdf of the paper could be viewed side-by-side with the editor, without annotation possibility; or in one or more separate tabs, with annotation possibility. As last year, no calendars were given with the exam paper, but candidates had to bring their own lists of Saturdays and Sundays and had to check EPO closure dates in the OJ.

The paper was of a quite common design, with quite some different subject-matter. A careful patentability assessment was needed, followed by a who-is-free-to-do-what analysis, and then an improvement question. There were no really strange legal topics, which is probably the main reason why this D2 had less marks and time than the earlier D2s.

Candidates had to deal with: