Reduction of the filing fee 

In the case of the filing of the European application, the presence of a description is necessary for the accordance of a date of filing (Rule 40(1)(c)), but claims are no longer required for this. According to J 4/88, only the description and claims needed to be in this language to qualify for the fee reduction (not the request for grant for example). However, since claims are no longer required for a date of filing, the essential element is now the description.

Consequently, the filing fee is reduced if the European patent application (i.e. at least the description) is filed in an admissible non-EPO language (i.e. an official language of a contracting state which is not an official language of the EPO).

Where the application is filed by reference to a previously filed application (see A‑II,, and the previously filed application referred to is in an admissible non-EPO language, and the applicant satisfies the eligibility criteria mentioned in A‑X, 9.2.1, then the applicant is also entitled to the reduction in the filing fee. For the purposes of the reduction, it does not matter whether or not the applicant requested that the claims of the previously filed application take the place of the claims in the application as filed (see above).

The reduction of the filing fee is also applicable to divisional applications if the parent application was filed in an admissible non-EPO language (see A‑IV, 1.3.3 and A‑X, 9.2.1) and the divisional application is filed in the same admissible non-EPO language as the earlier application (Rule 36(2) and Rule 6(3)), provided that the other requirements for the reduction are met (see above) and a translation is filed in time (see A‑X, 9.2.1).

Since the additional fees payable if the application comprises more than thirty-five pages, or if it is a second- or further generation divisional application, form part of the filing fee, the reduction applies also to them.

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