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Case Law of the Boards of Appeal

 
 
VI. The EPO acting as a PCT authority - Euro-PCT applications

The EPC provisions governing "international applications filed under the Patent Cooperation Treaty - Euro-PCT applications" are to be found in Part X of the Convention (Art. 150 to 153 EPC) and Part IX of the Implementing Regulations (R. 157 to 165 EPC).

Reference is also made to the Guidelines for Examination (June 2012 version) E-VIII and the EPO publication "How to get a European patent - Euro-PCT", Guide for applicants Part 2 (6th edition, October 2012).

Pursuant to Art. 150(2) EPC, international applications filed under the PCT may be the subject of proceedings before the EPO. In such proceedings, the provisions of the PCT and its Regulations apply, supplemented by the provisions of the EPC. In case of conflict, the provisions of the PCT or its Regulations prevail.

An applicant may file an international application for which the EPO is a designated Office (and optionally an elected Office). Such an application, once it has been accorded an international filing date, is equivalent to a regular European application and is generally referred to as a Euro-PCT application (Art. 153(2) EPC). Once the Euro-PCT application enters the regional phase before the EPO the appeal procedures provided for under the EPC supplement the provisions of the PCT (J 20/89, OJ 1991, 375; see also point B. below).