If an applicant, following a communication from the search division, has paid a further search fee but the examining division, at the applicant's request, has found that there was no justification for charging the further search fee, the latter will be repaid. The same principle applies if the applicant has paid a search fee on the basis of an invitation by the examining division in accordance with Rule 164(2) (see C‑III, 2.3). In such case the examining division will, on request, review the justification for charging the search fee in its invitation under Rule 164(2) (see C‑III, 3.3).
The international search fee will be refunded in the cases specified in Rules 16.2 PCT, Rule 16.3 PCT and Rule 41 PCT and in Annex C of the Agreement between the European Patent Organisation and the International Bureau of the World Intellectual Property Organization (WIPO) under the PCT (see OJ EPO 2010, 304). Following amendment of the provisions set out in Annex C, Part II(3) of the above mentioned agreement, any refund of the international search fee paid for an international application will be granted to the extent set out in the Decision of the President of the EPO dated 21 February 2014, OJ EPO 2014, A30, for international applications for which the international search report is completed on or after 1 July 2014. Details on the criteria for the refund of international search fees are given in the Notice from the EPO dated 9 January 2009, OJ EPO 2009, 99. See also GL/PCT-EPO A-II, 9.2.
Rule 16.2 PCT and Rule 16.3 PCT
Rule 41 PCT