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European Patent Convention (EPC 1973)

 
 
A revised version of the European Patent Convention entered into force on 13 December 2007. The provisions of the revised Convention apply unless the transitional provisions provide for the applicability of the EPC 1973.

Article 157

International search report

Art. 35, 92, 93
R. 69, 107



(1) Without prejudice to the provisions of paragraphs 2 to 4, the international search report under Article 18 of the Cooperation Treaty or any declaration under Article 17, paragraph 2(a), of that Treaty and their publication under Article 21 of that Treaty shall take the place of the European search report and the mention of its publication in the European Patent Bulletin.


(2) Subject to the decisions of the Administrative Council referred to in paragraph 3:


(a) a supplementary European search report shall be drawn up in respect of all international applications;


(b)108 the applicant shall pay the search fee, which shall be paid at the same time as the national fee provided for in Article 22, paragraph 1, or Article 39, paragraph 1, of the Cooperation Treaty. If the search fee is not paid in due time the application shall be deemed to be withdrawn.


(3) The Administrative Council may decide under what conditions and to what extent:


(a)109 the supplementary European search report is to be dispensed with;


(b)110 the search fee is to be reduced.


(4)111 The Administrative Council may at any time rescind the decisions taken pursuant to paragraph 3.



108 See decisions of the Enlarged Board of Appeal G 3/91, G 5/93 (Annex I).

109 See the decisions of the Administrative Council of 21.12.1978 (OJ EPO 1979, 4, Corr. 50), 17.05.1979 (OJ EPO 1979, 248) and 09.06.1995 (OJ EPO 1995, 511) dispensing with the supplementary European search report. These decisions continue to apply to applications filed before 01.07.2005, but for those filed on or after that date they have been rescinded by Council decision of 10.06.2005 (OJ EPO 2005, 422) as amended on 27.10.2005 (OJ EPO 2005, 546), except that the rescinding of the decision of 21.12.1978 does not extend to international applications on which the European Patent Office draws up the international search report.

110 See the decision of the Administrative Council of 10.06.2005 reducing the fee for the supplementary European search (OJ EPO 2005, 422) as amended on 27.10.2005 (OJ EPO 2005, 546) and 15.12.2005 (OJ EPO 2006, 13 f). See also the Council's decisions of 14.09.1979 (OJ EPO 1979, 368), 11.12.1980 (OJ EPO 1981, 5), 09.12.1993 (OJ EPO 1994, 6) and 08.06.2000 (OJ EPO 2000, 321) reducing the fee for the supplementary European search. These decisions continue to apply to applications filed before 01.07.2005 ; for those filed on or after that date, the decision of 27.10.2005 (OJ EPO 2005, 548) applies.

111  See the decision of the Administrative Council of 10.06.2005 reducing the fee for the supplementary European search (OJ EPO 2005, 422), as amended on 27.10.2005 (OJ EPO 2005, 546) and 15.12.2005 (OJ EPO 2006, 13 f), and the decision of 27.10.2005 (OJ EPO 2005, 548).

Cross-reference list
Art. 157(1), (2), (3) Art. 153(6), (7)