As for the WO‑ISA, the examiner needs to indicate whether the IPER is to be considered positive or negative. The same criteria apply as in GL/PCT‑EPO B‑XI, 3.4.
In the special case of a non-unitary application, where all inventions examined (normally after issuance of an invitation to pay additional fees (Form 405); see GL/PCT‑EPO C‑V, 1) were found novel and inventive, but still lacking unity – as the only remaining objection – the IPER is marked as negative. Under Section V, a positive statement as to novelty and inventive step is given for all examined inventions, and the objection as to lack of unity is reasoned under Section IV.
In this special case, the negative IPER can be sent directly without any further written opinion, as an exception to the general principle outlined in GL/PCT‑EPO C‑IV, 2.2, that prior to issuing a negative IPER a WO-IPEA (Form 408) is to be sent. The reason for this exception is that the applicant is entitled to have multiple inventions examined in Chapter II if additional fees have been paid, so that there is no objection to be raised in the WO-IPEA.
In the case of a non-unitary application where no additional search fees were paid and the report on the first invention is positive, the IPER is also marked as negative (because the non-unity objection will prevent a direct grant upon entry into the European phase) and can be sent directly. Under Section V, a positive statement as to novelty and inventive step is given for the first invention only. Section IV is not filled out (see GL/PCT‑EPO C‑V, 2).
Date retrieved: 17 May 2021