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Guidelines for Examination

 
 
7.
Title, abstract and figure(s) to be published with the abstract (as indicated on supplemental sheet A) 

Supplemental sheet A is prepared by the examiner before publication of the application, regardless of whether this is with the search report (A1 publication) or without it (A2 publication). The information contained in supplemental sheet A is needed for the publication of the application.

On supplemental sheet A, the examiner indicates:

(i)
approval or amendment of the text of the abstract, the content of which is communicated to the applicant according to Rule 66 (see A-III, 10). Examination of the abstract does not go beyond ensuring that it relates to the application concerned and that there is no conflict with the title of the invention or with the classification of the application. Since the abstract should relate to the application as filed, the examiner should consider it and determine its definitive content before carrying out the search, in order to avoid being inadvertently influenced by the results of the search.

If the search report is published separately (A3 publication), information about the abstract is not given in the communication. The information sent to the applicant includes the title of the invention and the figure, if any, of the drawings to be published with the abstract.

In exceptional cases, the examiner may change the abstract after the search has been carried out. However, if this is done after the application has been published A2, supplemental sheet A is not reissued;

(ii)
approval or amendment of the title of the invention (see A-III, 7);
(iii)
approval, modification or abolition of the selection of the figure which is to accompany the abstract (see F-II, 2.3(vi) and 2.4); and
(iv)
the translation of the title of the European application into the two other official languages. 

The European Patent Bulletin is published in all three official languages of the EPO according to Art. 14(7)(a) and contains the entries made in the Register of European Patents, which, according to Rule 143(1)(c), must contain the title of the invention. Consequently, the title is required in all three official languages of the EPC.

The above applies equally to applications published with the search report (A1 publication) and those published without it (A2 publication). In the case of an A2 publication, supplemental sheet A further contains the official classification of the application (see B-X, 5). In case of an A1 publication, the official classification appears only on the search report (Rule 61(6)).

Supplemental sheet A also indicates the nature of the publication to which it relates (A1 or A2).

In the case of a supplementary European search report in respect of an international application, supplemental sheet A should be marked A4. The examiner does not determine the title, abstract or figure to be published with the abstract, since these have already been determined by the International Searching Authority according to Rules 37.2, 38.2(a) and 8.2 PCT, respectively.