Electronic Certificates of Grant from the EPO

Rosalie Hide

Changes to Priority Document Arrangements at the EPO

From 01 April 2022, the European Patent Office (EPO) is changing its policy regarding the issuance of electronic certificates of grant for European patents.

At present, the EPO transmits the certificate of grant for each European patent to the patent proprietor, or their representative, by post as a physical copy. However, after 01 April 2022, where the patent proprietor or their representative has an activated electronic mailbox for receiving electronic mail directly from the EPO, grant certificates will be issued electronically. If there is more than one proprietor, the EPO will provide a certificate to each of them.

The move to Electronic Certificates of Grant

In practice, this change in procedure will mean that most patent certificates issued by the EPO are sent electronically to the electronic mailbox of the patent proprietor’s representative. However, if a physical certified copy of the grant certificate is required, this can be obtained from the EPO upon request alongside payment of an official fee. Where a certified copy is issued, the grant certificate will be accompanied by a copy of the patent specification as granted.

The changes discussed here also apply to certificates for patents that have been maintained in amended form after opposition proceedings, or have been amended via the central limitation procedure at the EPO.

These changes implemented by the EPO are welcomed and further move the office towards a completely paperless procedure.

Speak to Murgitroyd

If you have any questions regarding this change, don’t hesitate to get in touch with one of Murgitroyd’s IP Professionals.

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