3 February 2022
The latest version of the EPC and PCT-EPO Guidelines will come into force on 1 March, and a preview version has been published today. In parallel the EPO has opened its public user consultation on these latest Guidelines. Users are invited to submit their comments in any one of the EPO's three official languages via an online form. The deadline for contributions is 15 April 2022.
The Guidelines for Examination in the European Patent Office ("EPC Guidelines") and the Guidelines for Search and Examination at the European Patent Office as PCT Authority ("PCT-EPO Guidelines") give instructions on the practices and procedures to be followed in the examination of European and international applications and patents in accordance with the European Patent Convention (EPC), the Patent Cooperation Treaty (PCT) and their Implementing Regulations.
The Guidelines are a vital resource for illustrating the law and practice in proceedings before the EPO and are widely consulted by external parties. They are revised annually to keep them aligned with the latest legal and procedural developments.
We encourage all patent professionals and interested stakeholders to take this opportunity to comment on the EPC and PCT-EPO Guidelines.
The anonymised comments will be discussed with the members of the SACEPO Working Party on Guidelines in a meeting scheduled for May 2022.
We value your input and look forward to receiving your feedback.