In addition to the extension agreements, the EPO has concluded validation agreements with a number of states which are not a party to the EPC and thus not included in the designation "EP" (validation states). These validation agreements, unlike extension agreements, are not limited to European states. Pursuant to such agreements and the relevant national law, it is possible for applicants to validate European patent applications and patents in validation states, where the validated patents will confer essentially the same protection as patents granted by the EPO for the current 38 member states of the European Patent Organisation.
In order to validate European patent applications and patents in a validation state, an applicant has to submit a request for validation and pay the validation fees in due time, i.e. within 31 months from the date of filing (or the earliest priority date) or six months from the date of publication of the international search report, whichever is the later. A further requirement is that, on the international filing date, the validation agreement has to be in force and the validation state must both be a PCT contracting state and be designated for a national patent in the international application. Thus, a decision on the states for which validation is sought – and, in accordance therewith, timely payment of the validation fee(s) is due – need not be taken until the application enters the European phase or until six months have expired since the publication of the international search report, whichever is the later.
Date retrieved: 24 November 2017
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EPO Guide for Applicants, part II Int.
EPO Guide for Applicants, part II Int. - A General Overview
EPO Guide for Applicants, part II Int. - B The EPO as a PCT receiving Office
EPO Guide for Applicants, part II Int. - E Euro-PCT procedure before the EPO as designated or elected Office
Offical Journal of the EPO
XOJ EPO 2015, A85 - Validation of European patents in the Republic of Moldova (MD) with effect from 1 November 2015
XOJ EPO 2015, A84 - Decision of the President of the European Patent Office dated 1 October 2015 fixing the amount of the fee for validating European patent applications and patents in the Republic of Moldova
XOJ EPO 2015, A19 - Notice from the European Patent Office dated 5 February 2015 concerning the time limits for paying validation fees