European qualifying examination
European qualifying examination 1995
1.1 Date and centres
The European qualifying examination will be held from 29 to 31 March 1995 at the European Patent Office in Munich, at its branch at The Hague (Rijswijk) and at its sub-office in Berlin.
In addition, the examination will be held in centres where the national central industrial property offices of Contracting States to the European Patent Convention are located or at a location appointed by the Head of the national central industrial property office if the following two conditions are fulfilled: at least ten candidates must be enrolled for a given centre and the Head of the national central office in question must be agreeable to holding the examination on the above-mentioned date at this centre. In case conditions for holding the examination at the centre chosen by the candidate cannot be met, the candidate should indicate in his application form for the European qualifying examination whether in that event he would wish to sit the examination in Munich, The Hague or Berlin, or withdraw from the examination. He is not permitted to indicate an alternative other than Munich, The Hague or Berlin.
In all non-EPO centres there is only a limited number of places; they will be allotted in the order in which applications to sit the examination are received. The remaining candidates will be asked to go to Munich, The Hague or Berlin.
1.2 Period for submission of applications
Applications for enrolment, which must meet the requirements of Article 21 of the Regulation on the European qualifying examination (OJ EPO 1994, 7), may be submitted as of now to the Secretariat of the Examination Board (European Patent Office, Munich); they must be received at the European Patent Office not later than 2 December 1994. The European Patent Office stamp showing the date of receipt will constitute proof. Applications for enrolment received after that date will be refused. Articles 121 and 122 EPC are not applicable.
It is recommended that the form reproduced on p. 427 be used to apply for enrolment for the European qualifying examination. It may be copied from the Official Journal.
Where an application for enrolment is filed by fascimile, written confirmation reproducing the contents of the facsimile documents must be supplied within a non-extendable period of one month.
Applications should be submitted as early as possible to give the Secretariat of the Examination Board sufficient time to check whether the conditions for enrolment have been fulfilled.
1.3 Examination fee
The basic fee is DEM 800 (OJ EPO 1991, 125).
Articles 5 to 9 of the Rules relating to Fees and the Implementing Rules thereto enacted by the President of the European Patent Office apply as regards payment of the fee.
The application for enrolment will not be deemed to have been received until the date on which the payment of the fee is considered to have been made pursuant to Article 8 of the Rules relating to Fees. If that date is later than 2 December 1994, the application will be refused. Articles 121 and 122 EPC are not applicable.
Several candidates for the previous examinations failed to pay the examination fee in time. Attention is therefore urgently drawn to the ten-day period laid down in Article 8(3) of the Rules relating to Fees.
Candidates can withdraw from the examination. If the withdrawal is notified to the Secretariat of the Examination Board at least four weeks before the start of the examination then, on request, 75% of the examination fee will either be refunded or counted towards the fee payable in respect of a subsequent application for enrolment for the European qualifying examination. For withdrawals which are received later this will apply only in exceptional circumstances.
2.2 Professional activity
(Articles 10(2)(a) and 21(2)(b) of the Regulation on the European qualifying examination (REE))
(a) Activities pertaining to European and national patent applications or patents - Article 10(2)(a) and (4) REE
Candidates will not be required to have taken part in activities pertaining to "European" patent applications or patents. It will suffice to have taken part in activities pertaining to "national" patent applications or patents.
With reference to sub-paragraphs (ii) and (iii), it will not be necessary to have acted "before the European Patent Office in accordance with Article 133, paragraph 3, of the European Patent Convention". It will suffice to have acted before the national central industrial property office in accordance with a national provision or practice corresponding to Article 133(3) EPC.
(b) Professional Representative - Article 10(2)(a)(i) REE
The person responsible for supervision must be entered on the list of professional representatives by the date of the application for the examination by the candidate in accordance with Article 21 REE.
(c) Training or Employment Certificate - Article 21(2)(b) REE
It is recommended that the form reproduced on p. 429 be used. It may be copied from the Official Journal.
(d) Nature and scope of duties performed by the candidate - Article 21(2)(b) REE -
The certificate(s) must indicate the nature and scope of the duties performed by the candidate during the training period. It is in the interest of both the training supervisor and the candidate that from the outset of the three-year training period the candidate should take part in a wide range of relevant activities, i.e. have the opportunity to prepare first applications, replies to examiners' communications, and notices of opposition and appeal. A record should be kept of such activities so that on completion of the training period figures can be entered in the certificate.
2.3 Remission of periods of professional activity
(Article 11 REE)
The current practice regarding recognition of successfully completed advanced specialised studies or training courses will be maintained (cf. OJ EPO 1980, 221, point 5.4.3).
Candidates who have performed the duties of examiner with the European Patent Office for a period of four years full-time will be granted a reduction of the duration of the period of professional activity of one year.
3. First-time candidates
Such candidates can sit the examination in two modules (Article 14(1) REE). The first module consists of papers A and B, the second of papers C and D (Rule 2 of the implementing provisions, to be published).
4. Resitting the examination
Candidates may only resit those papers which they did not pass (Article 18 REE). They do not have to resit them all at once, even if they did not pass any of the four papers.
If however a candidate last took the examination before 1993, he has to resit the whole examination, unless in 1993 he was already eligible to resit it in part. If he last took the examination in 1993 or had the right to a partial resit in 1993, he may choose between resitting the whole examination or only those papers he did not pass. A candidate taking the whole examination for the first time after the entry into force of the Regulation on the European qualifying examination as amended on 9 December 1993 is sitting it for the first time within the meaning of Article 17(1) REE. For candidates who may retake only those papers which they did not pass and who are resitting all four, Article 17(1) REE does not apply.
5. Enrolment of EPO examiners
Candidates who at the date of the examination have performed the duties of examiner at the EPO for at least four years full-time may enrol for the examination even if they have not yet completed a training period within the meaning of Article 10(2)(a) REE (Article 10(2)(b) REE). They must submit a certificate issued by Personnel Department. They do not pass the examination until they have fulfilled the requirements of Article 17(1) and (2) REE.
For technical reasons, the forms embedded in this article are only available in the PDF version.