XI. FILING OF PATENT APPLICATIONS AND OTHER DOCUMENTS
XI.1
Filing of patent applications and other documents by facsimile

Decision of the President of the European Patent Office dated 12 July 2007 concerning the filing of patent applications and other documents by facsimile (OJ EPO 2007, Special edition No. 3, 7)

The President of the European Patent Office, having regard to Rule 2(1) EPC and Rule 92.4 PCT, has decided as follows:

Article 1

Filing of European patent applications

(1) European patent applications may be filed by facsimile with the filing offices of the European Patent Office in Munich, The Hague and Berlin.

(2) European patent applications may also be filed by facsimile with the competent national authorities of those contracting states which so permit.

(3) European patent applications and international applications may not be filed by telegram, teletex or similar means. Applications so filed shall be deemed not to have been received.

Article 2

Filing of international patent applications

(1) International (PCT) applications may be filed by facsimile with the filing offices of the European Patent Office in Munich, The Hague and Berlin.

(2) Where an international application is filed by facsimile, the application documents in due form and the Request (Form PCT/RO/101) shall be filed by post at the same time. The facsimile should state that the application documents have been filed separately on paper.

Article 3

Filing of other documents

After a European patent application or an international application has been filed, documents as referred to in Rule 50 EPC or Rule 92.4 PCT with the exception of authorisations and priority documents may be filed by facsimile with the filing offices of the European Patent Office in Munich, The Hague and Berlin.

Article 4

Signature

Where a document is filed by facsimile, reproduction of the filing person's signature on the facsimile shall in keeping with Rule 2(2) EPC be deemed sufficient to confirm the document's authenticity. The signature must clearly indicate the filing person's name and position.

Article 5

Date of filing of patent applications and date of receipt of documents

(1) The date of filing accorded to a European patent application or international patent application filed by facsimile shall be the date on which the application documents filed by facsimile were received in full at a filing office of the European Patent Office in Munich, The Hague or Berlin, provided these documents satisfy the requirements of Article 80 EPC and Rule 40 EPC or of Article 11(1) PCT.

(2) If the filing process extends beyond midnight and the documents received on the earlier day satisfy these requirements, the date of filing accorded to the application shall be the earlier day, provided the applicant so requests and at the same time renounces those parts of the application received after midnight.

(3) The date of receipt accorded to other documents filed by facsimile with the filing offices of the European Patent Office in Munich, The Hague and Berlin shall be the date on which they were received at the said filing offices.

(4) The foregoing paragraphs shall apply mutatis mutandis to documents filed with the competent national authorities of those contracting states which permit filing by facsimile. However, once the applicant has received the communication under Rule 35(4) EPC from the European Patent Office, all further documents relating to the application may be filed only with the European Patent Office.

(5) European or international patent applications and other subsequent documents filed with the Vienna sub-office shall be forwarded to one of the filing offices, and the date of filing accorded to them shall be their date of receipt at the latter office.

Article 6

Illegible or incomplete documents

Where a document filed by facsimile is illegible or incomplete, or where an attempt to file a document by facsimile has failed, the facsimile shall be deemed not to have been received. The sender, if identifiable, shall be notified without delay.

Article 7

Supplying confirmation of European patent applications and other documents

(1) At the invitation of the European Patent Office department charged with the procedure, paper confirmation of a European patent application filed by facsimile shall be supplied within a period of two months in the form of application documents reproducing the contents of the facsimile documents and complying with the requirements of the Implementing Regulations to the EPC. If the applicant fails to comply with this invitation in due time, the European patent application shall be refused (Article 90(5) EPC, Rule 2(1) EPC).

(2) At the invitation of the European Patent Office department charged with the procedure, paper confirmation of documents filed by facsimile which relate to European patent applications or patents or to international applications shall be supplied within a period of two months in the form of documents reproducing the contents of the facsimile documents and complying with the requirements of the Implementing Regulations to the EPC. If the party concerned fails to comply with this invitation in due time, the facsimile shall be deemed not to have been received (Rule 2(1) EPC, Rule 92.4(g)(ii) PCT).

Article 8

Acknowledgment of receipt

(1) The European Patent Office or the competent national authority of the contracting state concerned shall acknowledge receipt of a European patent application on the form provided for that purpose (EPO Form 1001 (Request for Grant), p. 6). For international applications the European Patent Office shall use EPO Form 1030/1031.

(2) The European Patent Office shall acknowledge receipt of other documents on the form provided for that purpose, which is to be completed by the party concerned (EPO Form 1037 or 1038).

(3) Prompt acknowledgment of the receipt of filed documents shall be assured only if the postal address is given to which such acknowledgment is to be sent.

(4) On request, the European Patent Office shall acknowledge receipt of the documents referred to in paragraphs 1 and 2 by facsimile. This shall be subject to payment of an administrative fee. Where immediate acknowledgment of receipt by facsimile has been requested, this shall be assured only if the request and evidence of payment of the administrative fee or a debit order are enclosed with the documents or filed at the same time and the facsimile number is given to which such acknowledgment is to be sent.

Article 9

Previous decisions superseded

Upon entry into force of this decision, the decision dated 6 December 2004 on the use of facsimile for filing patent applications and other documents (OJ EPO 2005, 41) and the notice dated 6 December 2004 concerning the filing of patent applications and other documents (OJ EPO 2005, 44) shall cease to have effect.

Article 10

Entry into force

This decision shall enter into force upon the entry into force of the revised text of the Convention in accordance with Article 8 of the Revision Act.

Done at Munich, 12 July 2007

Alison BRIMELOW

President

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