Complaint against the findings at the search stage 

If the search was restricted and the applicant complains about the findings at the search stage, the complaint will be dealt with by the Complaint Handling Unit at the EPO.

In order to ensure that a submission is treated as a complaint, applicants are advised to use the online complaint form and explicitly state that their reply is to be considered as a complaint. A letter of reply in which an applicant submits only substantive counterarguments contesting the findings of the ISA is not a complaint (see also GL/PCT‑EPO C‑IV, 4.1).

While there is no provision for a review based on substantive arguments, the ISA may exceptionally have to issue a corrected ISR in the event of a procedural flaw.

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