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06 February 2023
The European Patent Office (EPO) has published a preview version of its annual update of 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") which will come into force on March 1, 2023. At the same time, public users are invited to submit comments thereon to the EPO, which will be used to improve the 2024 editions.
EPC Guidelines and PCT-EPO Guidelines are widely consulted by EPO examiners and professional users on practices and procedures to be followed in the examination of European and International applications and patents under the European Patent Convention (EPC), the Patent Cooperation Treaty (PCT) and their Implementing Regulations. Comments on the 2023 editions may be submitted in any one of the EPO's three official languages (EN, FR, DE) via an online form, which will be open until 4 April, 2023. Submissions are anonymised and will be forwarded to the Standing Advisory Committee before the EPO (SACEPO) Working Party on Guidelines for consideration, and will form part of the discussions during the 25th meeting of the SACEPO Working Party on Guidelines in May 2023.
The preview version of the 2023 EPC Guidelines is here, the preview version of the 2023 PCT-Guidelines is here, and the online consultation form is here.
De Clercq & Partners is heavily involved in commenting on said amendments through the different bodies of EPI and AIPPI. We will keep you informed of how this evolves in the coming weeks and months.