FAQ patents

  • Can I enter the regional phase before the EPO of a PCT application if no English, French or German translation is available at the 31 month due date?
    The requirements for performing the acts of the regional entry before the EPO of a PCT application are outlined in Rule 159(1) EPC. Within thirty-one months from the date of filing of the International application or, if priority has been claimed, from the priority date the applicant shall

    (a)                  supply, where applicable, the translation (in English, French or German) of the international application,
    (b)                  specify the application documents on which the examination has to be based and
    (c-d-e-f)               pay the filing, supplemental search, designation and examination fees and if applicable additional claim and page fees.

     In absence of a proper translation as required under (a) at the 31st month time limit the EPO will issue shortly afterwards a Notice of Loss of Rights, with an invitation to correct the omitted act within two months under payment of a Fee for Further Processing.

    Thus YES, it is possible to enter the regional phase before the EPO at the 31st month time limit when no translation is available yet. The EPO allows the applicant to correct this omission within two months upon notification under payment of a restoration fee.

    Can I, as an applicant, influence at which of the three EPO Offices (The Hague, Munich or Berlin
  • Can I, as an applicant, influence at which of the three EPO Offices (The Hague, Munich or Berlin) my European patent application is being examined?
    Any language, e.g. a Chinese, English, Korean or Japanese specification, can be used for filing a national Dutch patent application, either directly as a first priority application or within the priority year claiming Paris Convention priority. After filing a complete Dutch translation of the specification or an English translation of the description and a Dutch translation of the claims need to be filed within a time limit set by the Dutch Patent Office. The claims of a Dutch patent application need always to be filed in the Dutch language. Also the applicant needs to be mentioned, and the filing and search fee need to be paid in time.
  • What are the filing requirements for filing a national Dutch patent application?
    Any language, e.g. a Chinese, English, Korean or Japanese specification, can be used for filing a national Dutch patent application, either directly as a first priority application or within the priority year claiming Paris Convention priority. After filing a complete Dutch translation of the specification or an English translation of the description and a Dutch translation of the claims need to be filed within a time limit set by the Dutch Patent Office. The claims of a Dutch patent application need always to be filed in the Dutch language. Also the applicant needs to be mentioned, and the filing and search fee need to be paid in time.
  • Can I enter the national phase in the Netherlands based on an International patent application (PCT)?
    NO, the national route for national Dutch patent applications originating directly from PCT applications has been closed.

    Instead, patent protection in the Netherlands can be obtained:
    • via the national route, that is by filing a direct national Dutch patent application within the priority year (see previous Q&A), or
    • via the Euro-PCT route, that is by entering the regional phase before the EPO under designation of the Netherlands and, upon grant of the European patent, by validating the European patent in the Netherlands.

FAQ designs

  • What are the formal requirements pertaining to the drawings of a community design application (EUIPO)?
    The representation of the design must consist of a graphic and/or photographic reproduction of the design, either in black and white or in color. The design must be reproduced on a neutral background and must not be retouched with ink or correcting fluid. Patent drawings mostly are not suitable because they include reference marks.

    It must be of a quality permitting all the details of the matter for which protection is sought to be clearly distinguished and permitting it to be reduced or enlarged to a size no greater than 8 cm by 16 cm per view for entry in the Register of Community Designs and for publication in the Community Designs Bulletin. It s possible to file a maximum of 7 perspectives of the design in one application.

    Drawings, photographs (except slides), computer-made representations or any other graphical representations are accepted, provided they are suitable for reproduction, including on a registration certificate in paper format. On the basis of the current legislation 3D computer-animated design generating motion simulation can only be considered as an additional technical means of viewing the design and does not replace conventional static views. CDROMs and other data carriers are not accepted.
  • Can we enter a figurative description with the drawings of a community design application?
    NO, the correct “Locarno-classification” of the design should be filed and optionally a title for the design can be included in the application.