Applicants may be represented before the EPO as IPEA by the agent appointed on filing the international application and having the right to practise before the receiving Office, i.e. the agent for the international phase (see point 36). The applicant may also appoint an agent to represent him specifically before the EPO as IPEA. Moreover, the agent appointed for the international phase may appoint a sub-agent to represent the applicant specifically before the EPO as IPEA.
Any agent specifically appointed before the EPO as IPEA must be entitled to practise before the EPO. It is strongly recommended that applicants who do not have their residence or place of business in one of the EPC contracting states appoint an agent entitled to practise before the EPO for the proceedings before the EPO as IPEA (see points 96 ff).
The appointment of an agent specifically before the EPO as IPEA can be done by the applicant or the agent for the international phase either by completing Box No. III of the PCT demand form (PCT/IPEA/401) and signing the demand, or by signing and submitting a separate power of attorney. Appointment may also be effected by reference in the demand or in a separate notice to a correctly deposited general power of attorney, of which a copy must be submitted. In that case, the demand or the separate notice may be signed by the purported agent.
The EPO as IPEA has waived the requirement that a signed separate power of attorney or a copy of a general power of attorney be submitted to it if the demand is signed by the purported agent for the procedure before the EPO as IPEA and not by the applicant or the agent for the international phase.
An exception to the waiver applies where the demand is signed by an agent who is not the agent of record, both agents do not belong to the same office and the new agent is not appointed in addition to the agent appointed earlier but appointed under revocation of any earlier appointment (PCT/IPEA/401, Box III, second check-box). In that situation, a separate power of attorney signed by the applicant or the agent of record, or a copy of a general power of attorney, is to be furnished. A further exception applies in any other case where the EPO is in doubt as to the person entitled to act for the application concerned.
Date retrieved: 24 November 2017