1. Where a number of oppositions have been entered in respect of the same application for the registration of an EU trade mark, the Office may examine them in one set of proceedings. The Office may subsequently decide to examine those oppositions separately.
2. Where a preliminary examination of one or more oppositions reveals that the EU trade mark for which an application for registration has been filed may be ineligible for registration in respect of some or all of the goods or services for which registration is sought, the Office may suspend the other opposition proceedings relating to that application. The Office shall inform the opposing parties affected by the suspension of any relevant decisions taken in the context of those proceedings which are ongoing.
3. Once a decision rejecting an application as referred to in paragraph 1 has become final, the oppositions for which proceedings have been suspended in accordance with paragraph 2 shall be deemed to have been disposed of and the opposing parties concerned shall be informed accordingly. Such a disposition shall be considered to constitute a case which has not proceeded to judgment within the meaning of Article 109(5) of Regulation (EU) 2017/1001.
4. The Office shall refund 50 % of the opposition fee paid by each opposing party whose opposition is deemed to have been disposed of in accordance with paragraph 3, provided that the suspension of the proceedings relating to that opposition took place before the commencement of the adversarial part of the proceedings.