I would like to register a change in the name of the applicant/proprietor. What do I have to do?

Requests for registration of a change of name in the European Patent Register must be made in writing. We recommend using EPO Form F5051.

Where multiple applications/patents are concerned, you can indicate that the change of name applies to all the applications/patents belonging to the applicant/proprietor. In that case, you do not have to submit a list of the individual applications/patents concerned. The request must simply state that it relates to all the applications/patents owned by the applicant/proprietor.

There is no fee payable. Formal documentary proof of the change of name, e.g. a certificate of marriage, an extract from the commercial register (showing the old and new names) or any other official document (which must be certified by a notary public) must, however, be submitted.

A change of name of the applicant/proprietor can be registered in the European Patent Register as long as proceedings are pending before the EPO, and until expiry of the opposition period (see Article 99(1) EPC.)

As far as legal persons (e.g. companies) are concerned, the change of name must not involve a change of legal entity. In other words the legal entity must be the same before and after the change of name.

The Legal Division has sole responsibility for registering changes of name once an adverse decision seems likely (see Decision of the President of the EPO dated 21 November 2013 concerning the responsibilities of the Legal Division, OJ EPO 2013, 600).

Further information: