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Guide for applicants, Part 2: PCT procedure before the EPO (Euro-PCT Guide)

 
 
Delaying of national phase until expiry of 30 months
329
Most contracting states apply Article 22 PCT as amended with effect from 1 April 2002. For these states, the 30/31-month time limit for entry into the national/regional phase applies regardless of whether the applicant has submitted the demand for international preliminary examination within 19 months from the (earliest) priority date.
WIPO PCT Guide 10.010, 10.050 
330
The EPO too applies Article 22 PCT as amended with effect from 1 April 2002. Therefore, the time limit for entry into the European phase is always 31 months from the priority date (see points 420 ff).
331
However, in respect of a small number of designated Offices, old Article 22(1) PCT still applies. The list of the contracting states for which that provision is still applicable is published on the WIPO website (see point 14). According to the latest information from WIPO available on 12 November 2013, the 20/21-month time limit applies to the following states: Luxembourg (LU), United Republic of Tanzania (TZ) and Uganda (UG). However, in respect of the regional designation of each of these states, the time limit under amended Article 22 PCT applies[ 26 ].
PCT Newsletter 2/2005, 6 
332
Therefore, if an applicant wants to enter the national phase for these states, the demand must be received by the competent IPEA within 19 months from the (earliest) priority date to secure the right to entry into the national phase being delayed until expiry of 30/31 months from the priority date.
333
Moreover, for these states, the applicant must respect the 19-month time limit even where the ISR and the WO-ISA are not yet available. In other words, a delay in the international search does not have as a consequence that the 19-month time limit is changed, since this time limit is exclusively calculated on the basis of the (earliest) priority date. 
WIPO PCT Guide 10.050 
334
For states applying the old Article 22(1) PCT, a demand filed with the EPO after expiry of 19 months from the priority date but prior to:
three months from the date of transmittal to the applicant of the ISR and the written opinion (WO-ISA) by the ISA, or 
22 months from the (earliest) priority date 
is valid, but does not have the effect of postponing commencement of the national phase to 30/31 months for the states in question (see point 331).