Changes for Applicants of PCT applications as a result of the America Invents Act

The Leahy-Smith America invents Act (AIA) entered into force on September 16, 2012.

Due to the AIA, it is no longer required  to name inventors as Applicants of a PCT application solely for the purpose of the designation of the United States.

For more detailed information, refer to the FAQs regarding the AIA offered by the  WIPO, which can be found here: http://www.wipo.int/pct/en/faqs/aia.html

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Automatic inclusion of priority documents in the files of European patent applications

From September 3, 2012, a copy of a previous application is automatically included in the file of a European patent application, which claims the priority the previous application, if the previous application is

  • a European patent application
  • a Chinese patent or utility model application
  • a Japanese patent or utility model application
  • a Korean patent or utility model application
  • a United States provisional or non-provisional patent application

The European Patent Office informs the Applicant of the later filed European patent application if a copy of the previous application was included in the file.

Thus, if a priority of a previous application as listed above is claimed in a European patent application, it is no longer necessary to file a certified priority document with the Eropean Patent Office.

The respective decision of the President of the European Patent Office can be found here: http://www.epo.org/law-practice/legal-texts/official-journal/president-notices/archive/20120822.html

Ireland acceded the London Agreement

Ireland acceded the London agreement and dispensed the translation requirement of European patents granted in German or French. Thus, Applicants of European patents do no longer have to file an English translation with the Irish Patents Office in order to validate European patents for Ireland, which were granted on or after September 3, 2012 (also, European patents, for which the mentions of grant were published in the 6 months prior to September 3, 2012, are no longer treated as void) .

The official information from the EPO can be found here. The official information from the Irish Patents Office is available on the official website http://www.patentsoffice.ie