What does the Association do?
The aims of the Association of Pensioners of the EPO are set out in its Statutes as follows:
- to assist in the examination of problems faced by staff in their adjustment to a life in retirement;
- to represent members and safeguard their interests; for this purpose it shall co-operate with the departments of the European Patent Office (EPO) and establish any necessary contacts at national level;
- to further and develop friendly relations between EPO pensioners.
The Association was founded in 1983 in The Hague and is registered in Munich. It has several local sections. Although the EPO’s Service Regulations do not explicitly provide for a right of the pensioners to be heard or to take part in the statutory bodies of the EPO, an Agreement was drawn up between the Association and the Office in 2006, giving the Association a right to receive information and to represent the pensioners in working groups affecting their interests. The Association also regularly meets the representatives of the active staff about these interests. Of particular importance is the representation of the pensioners in the meetings of Supervisory Board of the Pension Reserve Fund and in ad hoc bodies dealing with other matters of relevance to Pensioners.
Who is entitled to become a member?
Membership is open to persons drawing a pension from the EPO whether it be a retirement pension, survivors’ or orphan’s pension, or a pension for health reasons.