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Guidelines for Examination

 
 
3.2.1
Failure to reply in time or no reply 

If the applicant does not reply in time to the invitation under Rule 63(1), the Search Division will determine what to search. In this case a partial search report will be drawn up accordingly, or in exceptional cases a declaration replacing the search report. This limitation of the search has consequences in examination (see H-II, 5 and 6.1). A late-filed reply is included in the file for consideration by the examiner at the examination phase because it may be useful for reviewing the arguments given by the examiner for carrying out an incomplete search.

Given that the search report should be published together with the application, the two-month period prescribed under Rule 63 is not open to further processing, but it is possible to request re-establishment of rights (see OJ EPO 2009, 533).