Where the applicant claims the priority of an earlier application, a certified copy of that earlier application ("the priority document") must be filed with the receiving Office or the International Bureau within 16 months after the priority date. However, if the earlier application was filed with the receiving Office, the applicant may request that the receiving Office transmit a certified copy of the earlier application to the International Bureau. For that purpose, a check-box is provided in Box No. VI of the PCT request form.
Please note that the procedure whereby the EPO includes, free of charge, a copy of the previous application from which priority is claimed in the file of a European patent application does not apply in respect of an international application processed by the EPO as receiving Office (see point 634). Moreover, in the case of an EP priority document, the obligation to furnish such a priority document cannot be met by a request to the IB under the Digital Access Service (DAS) to retrieve it from an electronic library, because the EPO does not participate in this system. However, where the earlier application was filed as a national application with a national office that participates in DAS, the IB may be requested to obtain a certified copy of the earlier application from the digital library. For that purpose a check-box and a text field for the required access code are provided in Box No. VI of the PCT request form.
A priority document issued in paper form should also be submitted in that form to the EPO to ensure the validity of its certification. For that reason, it may not be filed by fax or using the EPO web-form filing service. On the other hand, priority documents issued in electronic form are accepted only if they are digitally signed by the issuing authority and if that signature is also accepted by the EPO. At present, only the Online Filing software supports the submission of priority documents issued in electronic form (see points 67 and 77).
Date retrieved: 30 December 2018
12 references found.Click X to load a reference inside the current page, click on the title to open in a new page.
EPC Rules relating to Fees
EPO Guide for Applicants, part II Int.
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
PCT Implementing Rules
Offical Journal of the EPO
XOJ EPO 2017, A59 - Decision of the President of the European Patent Office dated 19 June 2017 concerning the EPO Online Filing software to be used for the electronic filing of documents
XOJ EPO 2015, A91 - Decision of the President of the European Patent Office dated 10 November 2015 concerning the electronic filing of documents
XOJ EPO 2015, A27 - Decision of the President of the European Patent Office dated 11 March 2015 concerning the filing of documents using the EPO case management system