Decision of the President of the European Patent Office dated 21 February 2014 concerning the refund of the international search fee by the EPO acting as International Searching Authority

THE PRESIDENT OF THE EUROPEAN PATENT OFFICE,

having regard to the Agreement under the PCT between the European Patent Organisation and the International Bureau of WIPO which entered into force on 13 December 2007, and in particular Article 5(2)(i) and Annex C, Part II(3) thereof,

HAS DECIDED AS FOLLOWS:

Article 1

Refundable amounts

Where the international search report drawn up by the Office acting as International Searching Authority is based on an earlier search report prepared by the Office on an application whose priority is claimed for the international application, the international search fee paid for the pending international application shall be refunded as follows:

Type of earlier search Level of benefit for current search and refund(expressed as percentage of fee paid for current search)

1. Searches with written opinion

 

1a) European search (Art. 92 EPC)

full 100 %
partial 25 %

1b) International search (Art. 15(1) PCT)

1c) Supplementary international search (Rule 45bis PCT)

1d) Search made on behalf of a national office on a national application (BE[ 1 ], CY, FR, GR, IT, LT[ 2 ] , LU, MT, NL[ 1 ], SM[ 2 ], TR)

2. Searches without written opinion

 

2a) International-type search (Art. 15(5) PCT)

full 70 %
partial 17,5 %

2b) Standard search

2c) Search made on behalf of a national office on a national application (BE, CY[ 3 ], FR, GR[ 3 ], LU, NL, TR)

Article 2

Refund level

If the EPO can make full use of the earlier search report, it shall make a full refund as indicated in Article 1.

If the EPO can make partial use of the earlier search report, it shall make a partial refund as indicated in Article 1.

Article 3

Criteria for refund and refund procedure

The criteria determining the applicable refund level (full or partial use of the earlier search report) and the refund procedure shall be governed by the notice from the European Patent Office dated 9 January 2009 concerning the criteria for refund of search fees (OJ EPO 2009, 99).

Article 4

Entry into force

This decision shall enter into force on 1 July 2014 and shall apply to all international applications in respect of which the international search is completed on or after that date.

It replaces the decision of the President of the European Patent Office dated 24 March 2010 (OJ EPO 2010, 341).

Done at Munich, 21 February 2014

Benoît Battistelli

President


[ 1 ] Includes international-type searches covered by a specific working agreement.

[ 2 ] Applies to search requests in respect of national applications filed as of 1 January 2014.

[ 3 ] Applies only to search requests in respect of national applications transmitted to the EPO after 1 January 2009.

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