A divisional application may be filed relating to any pending earlier European patent application. The term "earlier application" refers to the immediate application on which the divisional application is based ("parent application"). Where the earlier application is a Euro-PCT application, a divisional application can only be filed upon entry of the earlier application into the European phase (see E‑IX, 2.4.1).
The divisional application is accorded the same date of filing as the parent application and has the benefit of any right of priority of the parent application in respect of the subject-matter contained in the divisional application (see A‑IV, 1.2.1).
A European patent application may give rise to more than one divisional application. A divisional application may itself give rise to one or more divisional applications.