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Tata Steel IJmijden B.V. v. ArcelorMittal France, District Court The Hague, 13 September 2017, Case No. ECLI:NL:RBDHA:2017:10432

ArcelorMittal holds EP 863 that relates to a “process for manufacturing stamped [steel] products, and stamped products prepared from the same”. Tata Steel successfully institutes and action to revoke the Dutch part of EP 863.

The Court rules that the method of claim 1 is obvious in the light of the closest prior art. Claim 2 only adds an already published feature to claim 1 and therefore is also revoked.

The Court further states that ArcellorMittal rightfully holds that the non obviousness of the method should not automatically lead to the invalidity of product claims 3 up to and including 9. However, a product obtained by using an obvious method can only be inventive if the product is not the inevitable direct result of that method. This was not argued or substantiated by ArcellorMittal.

A copy of the decision can be read here.