Filing of amendments 

Prior to the receipt of the European search report the applicant may amend the application only if invited by the Receiving Section to remedy particular deficiencies, including the case where no claims are present in the application as originally filed, wherein the applicant must rectify this deficiency by filing a set of claims in response to a communication according to Rule 58 (see A‑III, 15). After receipt of the European search report and before receipt of a first communication from the examining division, i.e. also during the period in which the application may still be with the Receiving Section, applicants may of their own volition amend the description, claims and drawings (Rule 137(2)). Furthermore, where a search opinion accompanies the search report under Rule 62(1), the applicant must respond to it by filing observations and/or amendments (see B‑XI, 8 for details and exceptions to this requirement). However, the European patent application may not be amended in such a way that it contains subject-matter which extends beyond the content of the application as filed (regarding the publication of claims thus amended in response to the European search report under Rule 137(2), see also A‑VI, 1.3).

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