S. Notifications

Notifications are governed in detail by Art. 119 EPC and R. 125 to 130 EPC. Notification may be made by post, delivery by hand, public notice or, as provided for in R. 127 EPC, by means of electronic communication. With regard to notifications by electronic communication, a pilot project was launched by the Decision of the President dated 4 July 2012 (OJ 2012, 486), with the aim of progressively introducing new technical means for the electronic communication of patent applications, other documents, notifications and further information. The pilot project was continued by the Decision of the President dated 11 March 2015 (OJ 2015, A28) together with Administrative Council decision CA/D 6/14 of 15 October 2014 (OJ 2015, A17).

Under the above-mentioned Administrative Council decision CA/D 6/14 (OJ 2015, A17), a set of amendments to the Implementing Regulations concerning notification and the use of electronic tools in proceedings before the EPO were introduced, thereafter entering into force on 1 April 2015. In particular amendments to 125, 126, 127 and 129 EPC were adopted, and these are explained in the sections on the individual forms of notification below. Amended R. 125(1) EPC clarifies what documents must be notified and serves merely as an explicit legal basis for the EPO's existing practice of not formally notifying notices and communications from which no time limits are reckoned (see notice of the EPO dated 30 March 2015, OJ 2015, A36). R. 126(1) EPC was further amended by Administrative Council decision CA/D 2/19 (OJ 2019, A31) to remove the requirement to notify with advice of delivery (proposed to enter into force on 1 November 2019).

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