14 December 2022
The first-ever European patent administration certification (EPAC) examination took place on 12 December 2022. More than 500 candidates from 33 countries sat the online examination, highlighting the global demand for such a certification and the convenience of digital testing. Once the marking is complete, the results will be issued and the inaugural candidates will be awarded their certificates.
The EPAC enables paralegals, patent administrators and formalities officers to demonstrate that they have acquired the knowledge and skills necessary to deal with the procedures associated with the filing, prosecution, grant and maintenance of European and international patent applications before the EPO, as well as post-grant administrative procedures.
Currently, paralegals and administrative staff working in intellectual property rights have limited choices when it comes to certification schemes. With the establishment of EPAC, these IP professionals now have an extra option to prove their competencies. Candidates prepared by participating in a mock examination, attending lectures, reviewing the seminar recordings or completing an e-learning module. From 2023, those who intend to sit the annual examination can join a seminar series and download a series of e-books as they work towards a high-quality certification.
In developing this project, the EPO has relied on the invaluable support of the epi, the European Platform of Intellectual Property Administrators and national offices with experience of training and certification in the field.