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Saeima ir pieņēmusi un Valsts
prezidents izsludina šādu likumu:
Par 1973. gada 5. oktobra Konvenciju par Eiropas patentu piešķiršanu (Eiropas patentu Konvencija), 2000. gada 17. oktobra Vienošanos par Konvencijas par Eiropas patentu piešķiršanu 65. panta piemērošanu un 2000. gada 29. novembra Grozījumiem 1973. gada 5. oktobra Konvencijā par Eiropas patentu piešķiršanu (Eiropas patentu Konvencija)

1.pants. 1973.gada 5.oktobra Konvencija par Eiropas patentu piešķiršanu (Eiropas patentu Konvencija) ar grozījumiem, kas izdarīti līdz 2004.gada 1.janvārim (turpmāk — Konvencija), 2000.gada 17.oktobra Vienošanās par Konvencijas par Eiropas patentu piešķiršanu 65.panta piemērošanu (turpmāk — Vienošanās) un 2000.gada 29.novembra Grozījumi 1973.gada 5.oktobra Konvencijā par Eiropas patentu piešķiršanu (Eiropas patentu Konvencija) (turpmāk — Grozījumi) ar šo likumu tiek pieņemti un apstiprināti.

2.pants. Konvencijas izpildi koordinē un Latvijas Republikas intereses Konvencijas izpildinstitūcijās pārstāv Patentu valde.

3.pants. Konvencija stājas spēkā tās 169.pantā noteiktajā laikā un kārtībā, Vienošanās stājas spēkā tās 6.pantā noteiktajā laikā un kārtībā, Grozījumi stājas spēkā to 8.pantā noteiktajā laikā un kārtībā, un Ārlietu ministrija par to paziņo laikrakstā "Latvijas Vēstnesis".

4.pants. Likums stājas spēkā nākamajā dienā pēc tā izsludināšanas. Līdz ar likumu izsludināma Konvencija, Vienošanās un Grozījumi angļu valodā un to tulkojums latviešu valodā.

Likums Saeimā pieņemts 2005.gada 24.februārī.
Valsts prezidente V.Vīķe-Freiberga
Rīgā 2005.gada 15.martā
Convention on the grant of European Patents
(European Patent Convention)
of 5 October 1973

text as amended by the act revising Article 63 EPC of 17 December 1991and by decisions of the Administrative Council of the European Patent Organisation of 21 December 1978, 13 December 1994, 20 October 1995, 5 December 1996 and 10 December 1998

PREAMBLE

The Contracting States,

DESIRING to strengthen co-operation between the States of Europe in respect of the protection of inventions,

DESIRING that such protection may be obtained in those States by a single procedure for the grant of patents and by the establishment of certain standard rules governing patents so granted,

DESIRING, for this purpose, to conclude a Convention which establishes a European Patent Organisation and which constitutes a special agreement within the meaning of Article 19 of the Convention for the Protection of Industrial Property, signed in Paris on 20 March 1883 and last revised on 14 July 1967, and a regional patent treaty within the meaning of Article 45, paragraph 1, of the Patent Cooperation Treaty of 19 June 1970,

HAVE AGREED on the following provisions:

Part I

GENERAL AND INSTITUTIONAL PROVISIONS

Chapter I

General provisions

Article 1

European law for the grant of patents

A system of law, common to the Contracting States, for the grant of patents for invention is hereby established.

Article 2

European patent

(1) Patents granted by virtue of this Convention shall be called European patents.

(2) The European patent shall, in each of the Contracting States for which it is granted, have the effect of and be subject to the same conditions as a national patent granted by that State, unless otherwise provided in this Convention.

Article 3

Territorial effect

The grant of a European patent may be requested for one or more of the Contracting States.

Article 4

European Patent Organisation

(1) A European Patent Organisation, hereinafter referred to as the Organisation, is established by this Convention. It shall have administrative and financial autonomy.

(2) The organs of the Organisation shall be:

(a) a European Patent Office;

(b) an Administrative Council.

(3) The task of the Organisation shall be to grant European patents. This shall be carried out by the European Patent Office supervised by the Administrative Council.

Chapter II

The European Patent Organisation

Article 5

Legal status

(1) The Organisation shall have legal personality.

(2) In each of the Contracting States, the Organisation shall enjoy the most extensive legal capacity accorded to legal persons under the national law of that State; it may in particular acquire or dispose of movable and immovable property and may be a party to legal proceedings.

(3) The President of the European Patent Office shall represent the Organisation.

Article 6

Seat

(1) The Organisation shall have its seat at Munich.

(2) The European Patent Office shall be set up at Munich. It shall have a branch at The Hague.

Article 7

Sub-offices of the European Patent Office

By decision of the Administrative Council, sub-offices of the European Patent Office may be created if need be, for the purpose of information and liaison, in the Contracting States and with inter-governmental organisations in the field of industrial property, subject to the approval of the Contracting State or organisation concerned.

Article 8

Privileges and immunities

The Protocol on Privileges and Immunities annexed to this Convention shall define the conditions under which the Organisation, the members of the Administrative Council, the employees of the European Patent Office and such other persons specified in that Protocol as take part in the work of the Organisation, shall enjoy, in the territory of each Contracting State, the privileges and immunities necessary for the performance of their duties.

Article 9

Liability

(1) The contractual liability of the Organisation shall be governed by the law applicable to the relevant contract.

(2) The non-contractual liability of the Organisation in respect of any damage caused by it or by the employees of the European Patent Office in the performance of their duties shall be governed by the provisions of the law of the Federal Republic of Germany. Where the damage is caused by the branch at The Hague or a sub-office or employees attached thereto, the provisions of the law of the Contracting State in which such branch or sub-office is located shall apply.

(3) The personal liability of the employees of the European Patent Office towards the Organisation shall be laid down in their Service Regulations or conditions of employment.

(4) The courts with jurisdiction to settle disputes under paragraphs 1 and 2 shall be:

(a) for disputes under paragraph 1, the courts of competent jurisdiction in the Federal Republic of Germany, unless the contract concluded between the parties designates the courts of another State;

(b) for disputes under paragraph 2, either the courts of competent jurisdiction in the Federal Republic of Germany, or the courts of competent jurisdiction in the State in which the branch or sub-office is located.

Chapter III

The European Patent Office

Article 10

Direction

(1) The European Patent Office shall be directed by the President who shall be responsible for its activities to the Administrative Council.

(2) To this end, the President shall have in particular the following functions and powers:

(a) he shall take all necessary steps, including the adoption of internal administrative instructions and the publication of guidance for the public, to ensure the functioning of the European Patent Office;

(b) in so far as this Convention contains no provisions in this respect, he shall prescribe which transactions are to be carried out at the European Patent Office at Munich and its branch at The Hague respectively;

(c) he may place before the Administrative Council any proposal for amending this Convention and any proposal for general regulations or decisions which come within the competence of the Administrative Council;

(d) he shall prepare and implement the budget and any amending or supplementary budget;

(e) he shall submit a management report to the Administrative Council each year;

(f) he shall exercise supervisory authority over the personnel;

(g) subject to the provisions of Article 11, he shall appoint and promote the employees;

(h) he shall exercise disciplinary authority over the employees other than those referred to in Article 11, and may propose disciplinary action to the Administrative Council with regard to employees referred to in Article 11, paragraphs 2 and 3;

(i) he may delegate his functions and powers.

(3) The President shall be assisted by a number of Vice-Presidents. If the President is absent or indisposed, one of the Vice-Presidents shall take his place in accordance with the procedure laid down by the Administrative Council.

Article 11

Appointment of senior employees

(1) The President of the European Patent Office shall be appointed by decision of the Administrative Council.

(2) The Vice-Presidents shall be appointed by decision of the Administrative Council after the President has been consulted.

(3) The members, including the Chairmen, of the Boards of Appeal and of the Enlarged Board of Appeal shall be appointed by decision of the Administrative Council, taken on a proposal from the President of the European Patent Office. They may be re-appointed by decision of the Administrative Council after the President of the European Patent Office has been consulted.

(4) The Administrative Council shall exercise disciplinary authority over the employees referred to in paragraphs 1 to 3.

Article 12

Duties of office

The employees of the European Patent Office shall be bound, even after the termination of their employment, neither to disclose nor to make use of information which by its nature is a professional secret.

Article 13

Disputes between the Organisation and the employees of the European Patent Office

(1) Employees and former employees of the European Patent Office or their successors in title may apply to the Administrative Tribunal of the International Labour Organisation in the case of disputes with the European Patent Organisation in accordance with the Statute of the Tribunal and within the limits and subject to the conditions laid down in the Service Regulations for permanent employees or the Pension Scheme Regulations or arising from the conditions of employment of other employees.

(2) An appeal shall only be admissible if the person concerned has exhausted such other means of appeal as are available to him under the Service Regulations, the Pension Scheme Regulations or the conditions of employment, as the case may be.

Article 14

Languages of the European Patent Office

(1) The official languages of the European Patent Office shall be English, French and German. European patent applications must be filed in one of these languages.

(2) However, natural or legal persons having their residence or principal place of business within the territory of a Contracting State having a language other than English, French or German as an official language, and nationals of that State who are resident abroad, may file European patent applications in an official language of that State. Nevertheless, a translation in one of the official languages of the European Patent Office must be filed within the time limit prescribed in the Implementing Regulations; throughout the proceedings before the European Patent Office, such translation may be brought into conformity with the original text of the application.

(3) The official language of the European Patent Office in which the European patent application is filed or, in the case referred to in paragraph 2, that of the translation, shall be used as the language of the proceedings in all proceedings before the European Patent Office concerning the application or the resulting patent, unless otherwise provided in the Implementing Regulations.

(4) The persons referred to in paragraph 2 may also file documents which have to be filed within a time limit in an official language of the Contracting State concerned. They must however file a translation in the language of the proceedings within the time limit prescribed in the Implementing Regulations; in the cases provided for in the Implementing Regulations, they may file a translation in a different official language of the European Patent Office.

(5) If any document, other than those making up the European patent application, is not filed in the language prescribed by this Convention, or if any translation required by virtue of this Convention is not filed in due time, the document shall be deemed not to have been received.

(6) European patent applications shall be published in the language of the proceedings.

(7) The specifications of European patents shall be published in the language of the proceedings; they shall include a translation of the claims in the two other official languages of the European Patent Office.

(8) There shall be published in the three official languages of the European Patent Office:

(a) the European Patent Bulletin;

(b) the Official Journal of the European Patent Office.

(9) Entries in the Register of European Patents shall be made in the three official languages of the European Patent Office. In cases of doubt, the entry in the language of the proceedings shall be authentic.

Article 15

The departments charged with the procedure

For implementing the procedures laid down in this Convention, there shall be set up within the European Patent Office:

(a) a Receiving Section;

(b) Search Divisions;

(c) Examining Divisions;

(d) Opposition Divisions;

(e) a Legal Division;

(f) Boards of Appeal;

(g) an Enlarged Board of Appeal.

Article 16

Receiving Section

The Receiving Section shall be in the branch at The Hague. It shall be responsible for the examination on filing and the examination as to formal requirements of each European patent application up to the time when a request for examination has been made or the applicant has indicated under Article 96, paragraph 1, that he desires to proceed further with his application. It shall also be responsible for the publication of the European patent application and of the European search report.

Article 17

Search Divisions

The Search Divisions shall be in the branch at The Hague. They shall be responsible for drawing up European search reports.

Article 18

Examining Divisions

(1) An Examining Division shall be responsible for the examination of each European patent application from the time when the Receiving Section ceases to be responsible.

(2) An Examining Division shall consist of three technical examiners. Nevertheless, the examination prior to a final decision shall, as a general rule, be entrusted to one member of the Division. Oral proceedings shall be before the Examining Division itself. If the Examining Division considers that the nature of the decision so requires, it shall be enlarged by the addition of a legally qualified examiner. In the event of parity of votes, the vote of the Chairman of the Division shall be decisive.

Article 19

Opposition Divisions

(1) An Opposition Division shall be responsible for the examination of oppositions against any European patent.

(2) An Opposition Division shall consist of three technical examiners, at least two of whom shall not have taken part in the proceedings for grant of the patent to which the opposition relates. An examiner who has taken part in the proceedings for the grant of the European patent shall not be the Chairman. Prior to the taking of a final decision on the opposition, the Opposition Division may entrust the examination of the opposition to one of its members. Oral proceedings shall be before the Opposition Division itself. If the Opposition Division considers that the nature of the decision so requires, it shall be enlarged by the addition of a legally qualified examiner who shall not have taken part in the proceedings for grant of the patent. In the event of parity of votes, the vote of the Chairman of the Division shall be decisive.

Article 20

Legal Division

(1) The Legal Division shall be responsible for decisions in respect of entries in the Register of European Patents and in respect of registration on, and deletion from, the list of professional representatives.

(2) Decisions of the Legal Division shall be taken by one legally qualified member.

Article 21

Boards of Appeal

(1) The Boards of Appeal shall be responsible for the examination of appeals from the decisions of the Receiving Section, Examining Divisions, Opposition Divisions and of the Legal Division.

(2) For appeals from a decision of the Receiving Section or the Legal Division, a Board of Appeal shall consist of three legally qualified members.

(3) For appeals from a decision of an Examining Division, a Board of Appeal shall consist of:

(a) two technically qualified members and one legally qualified member, when the decision concerns the refusal of a European patent application or the grant of a European patent and was taken by an Examining Division consisting of less than four members;

(b) three technically qualified members and two legally qualified members, when the decision was taken by an Examining Division consisting of four members or when the Board of Appeal considers that the nature of the appeal so requires;

(c) three legally qualified members in all other cases.

(4) For appeals from a decision of an Opposition Division, a Board of Appeal shall consist of:

(a) two technically qualified members and one legally qualified member, when the decision was taken by an Opposition Division consisting of three members;

(b) three technically qualified members and two legally qualified members, when the decision was taken by an Opposition Division consisting of four members or when the Board of Appeal considers that the nature of the appeal so requires.

Article 22

Enlarged Board of Appeal

(1) The Enlarged Board of Appeal shall be responsible for:

(a) deciding points of law referred to it by Boards of Appeal;

(b) giving opinions on points of law referred to it by the President of the European Patent Office under the conditions laid down in Article 112.

(2) For giving decisions or opinions, the Enlarged Board of Appeal shall consist of five legally qualified members and two technically qualified members. One of the legally qualified members shall be the Chairman.

Article 23

Independence of the members of the Boards

(1) The members of the Enlarged Board of Appeal and of the Boards of Appeal shall be appointed for a term of five years and may not be removed from office during this term, except if there are serious grounds for such removal and if the Administrative Council, on a proposal from the Enlarged Board of Appeal, takes a decision to this effect.

(2) The members of the Boards may not be members of the Receiving Section, Examining Divisions, Opposition Divisions or of the Legal Division.

(3) In their decisions the members of the Boards shall not be bound by any instructions and shall comply only with the provisions of this Convention.

(4) The Rules of Procedure of the Boards of Appeal and the Enlarged Board of Appeal shall be adopted in accordance with the provisions of the Implementing Regulations. They shall be subject to the approval of the Administrative Council.

Article 24

Exclusion and objection

(1) Members of the Boards of Appeal or of the Enlarged Board of Appeal may not take part in any appeal if they have any personal interest therein, if they have previously been involved as representatives of one of the parties, or if they participated in the decision under appeal.

(2) If, for one of the reasons mentioned in paragraph 1, or for any other reason, a member of a Board of Appeal or of the Enlarged Board of Appeal considers that he should not take part in any appeal, he shall inform the Board accordingly.

(3) Members of a Board of Appeal or of the Enlarged Board of Appeal may be objected to by any party for one of the reasons mentioned in paragraph 1, or if suspected of partiality. An objection shall not be admissible if, while being aware of a reason for objection, the party has taken a procedural step. No objection may be based upon the nationality of members.

(4) The Boards of Appeal and the Enlarged Board of Appeal shall decide as to the action to be taken in the cases specified in paragraphs 2 and 3 without the participation of the member concerned. For the purposes of taking this decision the member objected to shall be replaced by his alternate.

Article 25

Technical opinion

At the request of the competent national court trying an infringement or revocation action, the European Patent Office shall be obliged, against payment of an appropriate fee, to give a technical opinion concerning the European patent which is the subject of the action. The Examining Division shall be responsible for the issue of such opinions.

Chapter IV

The Administrative Council

Article 26

Membership

(1) The Administrative Council shall be composed of the Representatives and the alternate Representatives of the Contracting States. Each Contracting State shall be entitled to appoint one Representative and one alternate Representative to the Administrative Council.

(2) The members of the Administrative Council may, subject to the provisions of its Rules of Procedure, be assisted by advisers or experts.

Article 27

Chairmanship

(1) The Administrative Council shall elect a Chairman and a Deputy Chairman from among the Representatives and alternate Representatives of the Contracting States. The Deputy Chairman shall ex officio replace the Chairman in the event of his being prevented from attending to his duties.

(2) The duration of the terms of office of the Chairman and the Deputy Chairman shall be three years. The terms of office shall be renewable.

Article 28

Board

(1) When there are at least eight Contracting States, the Administrative Council may set up a Board composed of five of its members.

(2) The Chairman and the Deputy Chairman of the Administrative Council shall be members of the Board ex officio; the other three members shall be elected by the Administrative Council.

(3) The term of office of the members elected by the Administrative Council shall be three years. This term of office shall not be renewable.

(4) The Board shall perform the duties given to it by the Administrative Council in accordance with the Rules of Procedure.

Article 29

Meetings

(1) Meetings of the Administrative Council shall be convened by its Chairman.

(2) The President of the European Patent Office shall take part in the deliberations of the Administrative Council.

(3) The Administrative Council shall hold an ordinary meeting once each year. In addition, it shall meet on the initiative of its Chairman or at the request of one third of the Contracting States.

(4) The deliberations of the Administrative Council shall be based on an agenda, and shall be held in accordance with its Rules of Procedure.

(5) The provisional agenda shall contain any question whose inclusion is requested by any Contracting State in accordance with the Rules of Procedure.

Article 30

Attendance of observers

(1) The World Intellectual Property Organization shall be represented at the meetings of the Administrative Council, in accordance with the provisions of an agreement to be concluded between the European Patent Organisation and the World Intellectual Property Organization.

(2) Any other intergovernmental organisation charged with the implementation of international procedures in the field of patents with which the Organisation has concluded an agreement shall be represented at the meetings of the Administrative Council, in accordance with any provisions contained in such agreement.

(3) Any other intergovernmental and international non governmental organisations exercising an activity of interest to the Organisation may be invited by the Administrative Council to arrange to be represented at its meetings during any discussion of matters of mutual interest.

Article 31

Languages of the Administrative Council

(1) The languages in use in the deliberations of the Administrative Council shall be English, French and German.

(2) Documents submitted to the Administrative Council, and the minutes of its deliberations, shall be drawn up in the three languages mentioned in paragraph 1.

Article 32

Staff, premises and equipment

The European Patent Office shall place at the disposal of the Administrative Council and any body established by it such staff, premises and equipment as may be necessary for the performance of their duties.

Article 33

Competence of the Administrative Council in certain cases

(1) The Administrative Council shall be competent to amend the following provisions of this Convention:

(a) the time limits laid down in this Convention; this shall apply to the time limit laid down in Article 94 only in the conditions laid down in Article 95;

(b) the Implementing Regulations.

(2) The Administrative Council shall be competent, in conformity with this Convention, to adopt or amend the following provisions:

(a) the Financial Regulations;

(b) the Service Regulations for permanent employees and the conditions of employment of other employees of the European Patent Office, the salary scales of the said permanent and other employees, and also the nature, and rules for the grant, of any supplementary benefits;

(c) the Pension Scheme Regulations and any appropriate increases in existing pensions to correspond to increases in salaries;

(d) the Rules relating to Fees;

(e) its Rules of Procedure.

(3) Notwithstanding Article 18, paragraph 2, the Administrative Council shall be competent to decide, in the light of experience, that in certain categories of cases Examining Divisions shall consist of one technical examiner. Such decision may be rescinded.

(4) The Administrative Council shall be competent to authorise the President of the European Patent Office to negotiate and, with its approval, to conclude agreements on behalf of the European Patent Organisation with States, with intergovernmental organisations and with documentation centres set up by virtue of agreements with such organisations.

Article 34

Voting rights

(1) The right to vote in the Administrative Council shall be restricted to the Contracting States.

(2) Each Contracting State shall have one vote, subject to the application of the provisions of Article 36.

Article 35

Voting rules

(1) The Administrative Council shall take its decisions other than those referred to in paragraph 2 by a simple majority of the Contracting States represented and voting.

(2) A majority of three-quarters of the votes of the Contracting States represented and voting shall be required for the decisions which the Administrative Council is empowered to take under Article 7, Article 11, paragraph 1, Article 33, Article 39, paragraph 1, Article 40, paragraphs 2 and 4, Article 46, Article 87, Article 95, Article 134, Article 151, paragraph 3, Article 154, paragraph 2, Article 155, paragraph 2, Article 156, Article 157, paragraphs 2 to 4, Article 160, paragraph 1, second sentence, Article 162, Article 163, Article 166, Article 167 and Article 172.

(3) Abstentions shall not be considered as votes.

Article 36

Weighting of votes

(1) In respect of the adoption or amendment of the Rules relating to Fees and, if the financial contribution to be made by the Contracting States would thereby be increased, the adoption of the budget of the Organisation and of any amending or supplementary budget, any Contracting State may require, following a first ballot in which each Contracting State shall have one vote, and whatever the result of this ballot, that a second ballot be taken immediately, in which votes shall be given to the States in accordance with paragraph 2. The decision shall be determined by the result of this second ballot.

(2) The number of votes that each Contracting State shall have in the second ballot shall be calculated as follows:

(a) the percentage obtained for each Contracting State in respect of the scale for the special financial contributions, pursuant to Article 40, paragraphs 3 and 4, shall be multiplied by the number of Contracting States and divided by five;

(b) the number of votes thus given shall be rounded upwards to the next higher whole number;

(c) five additional votes shall be added to this number;

(d) nevertheless no Contracting State shall have more than 30 votes.

Chapter V

Financial provisions

Article 37

Cover for expenditure

The expenditure of the Organisation shall be covered:

(a) by the Organisation's own resources;

(b) by payments made by the Contracting States in respect of renewal fees for European patents levied in these States;

(c) where necessary, by special financial contributions made by the Contracting States;

(d) where appropriate, by the revenue provided for in Article 146.

Article 38

The Organisation's own resources

The Organisation's own resources shall be the yield from the fees laid down in this Convention, and also all receipts, whatever their nature.

Article 39

Payments by the Contracting States in respect of renewal fees for European patents

(1) Each Contracting State shall pay to the Organisation in respect of each renewal fee received for a European patent in that State an amount equal to a proportion of that fee, to be fixed by the Administrative Council; the proportion shall not exceed 75 per cent and shall be the same for all Contracting States. However, if the said proportion corresponds to an amount which is less than a uniform minimum amount fixed by the Administrative Council, the Contracting State shall pay that minimum to the Organisation.

(2) Each Contracting State shall communicate to the Organisation such information as the Administrative Council considers to be necessary to determine the amount of its payments.

(3) The due dates for these payments shall be determined by the Administrative Council.

(4) If a payment is not remitted fully by the due date, the Contracting State shall pay interest from the due date on the amount remaining unpaid.

Article 40

Level of fees and payments — Special financial contributions

(1) The amounts of the fees referred to under Article 38 and the proportion referred to under Article 39 shall be fixed at such a level as to ensure that the revenue in respect thereof is sufficient for the budget of the Organisation to be balanced.

(2) However, if the Organisation is unable to balance its budget under the conditions laid down in paragraph 1, the Contracting States shall remit to the Organisation special financial contributions, the amount of which shall be determined by the Administrative Council for the accounting period in question.

(3) These special financial contributions shall be determined in respect of any Contracting State on the basis of the number of patent applications filed in the last year but one prior to that of entry into force of this Convention, and calculated in the following manner:

(a) one half in proportion to the number of patent applications filed in that Contracting State;

(b) one half in proportion to the second highest number of patent applications filed in the other Contracting States by natural or legal persons having their residence or principal place of business in that Contracting State.

However, the amounts to be contributed by States in which the number of patent applications filed exceeds 25 000 shall then be taken as a whole and a new scale drawn up determined in proportion to the total number of patent applications filed in these States.

(4) Where, in respect of any Contracting State, its scale position cannot be established in accordance with paragraph 3, the Administrative Council shall, with the consent of that State, decide its scale position.

(5) Article 39, paragraphs 3 and 4, shall apply mutatis mutandis to the special financial contributions.

(6) The special financial contributions shall be repaid together with interest at a rate which shall be the same for all Contracting States. Repayments shall be made in so far as it is possible to provide for this purpose in the budget; the amount thus provided shall be distributed among the Contracting States in accordance with the scale mentioned in paragraphs 3 and 4 above.

(7) The special financial contributions remitted in any accounting period shall be wholly repaid before any such contributions or parts thereof remitted in any subsequent accounting period are repaid.

Article 41

Advances

(1) At the request of the President of the European Patent Office, the Contracting States shall make advances to the Organisation, on account of their payments and contributions, within the limit of the amount fixed by the Administrative Council. Such advances shall be apportioned in proportion to the amounts due by the Contracting States for the accounting period in question.

(2) Article 39, paragraphs 3 and 4, shall apply mutatis mutandis to the advances.

Article 42

Budget

(1) Income and expenditure of the Organisation shall form the subject of estimates in respect of each accounting period and shall be shown in the budget. If necessary, there may be amending or supplementary budgets.

(2) The budget shall be balanced as between income and expenditure.

(3) The budget shall be drawn up in the unit of account fixed in the Financial Regulations.

Article 43

Authorisation for expenditure

(1) The expenditure entered in the budget shall be authorised for the duration of one accounting period, unless any provisions to the contrary are contained in the Financial Regulations.

(2) Subject to the conditions to be laid down in the Financial Regulations, any appropriations, other than those relating to staff costs, which are unexpended at the end of the accounting period may be carried forward, but not beyond the end of the following accounting period.

(3) Appropriations shall be set out under different headings according to type and purpose of the expenditure and subdivided, as far as necessary, in accordance with the Financial Regulations.

Article 44

Appropriations for unforeseeable expenditure

(1) The budget of the Organisation may contain appropriations for unforeseeable expenditure.

(2) The employment of these appropriations by the Organisation shall be subject to the prior approval of the Administrative Council.

Article 45

Accounting period

The accounting period shall commence on 1 January and end on 31 December.

Article 46

Preparation and adoption of the budget

(1) The President of the European Patent Office shall lay the draft budget before the Administrative Council not later than the date prescribed in the Financial Regulations.

(2) The budget and any amending or supplementary budget shall be adopted by the Administrative Council.

Article 47

Provisional budget

(1) If, at the beginning of the accounting period, the budget has not been adopted by the Administrative Council, expenditures may be effected on a monthly basis per heading or other division of the budget, according to the provisions of the Financial Regulations, up to one-twelfth of the budget appropriations for the preceding accounting period, provided that the appropriations thus made available to the President of the European Patent Office shall not exceed one-twelfth of those provided for in the draft budget.

(2) The Administrative Council may, subject to the observance of the other provisions laid down in paragraph 1, authorise expenditure in excess of one-twelfth of the appropriations.

(3) The payments referred to in Article 37, sub-paragraph (b), shall continue to be made, on a provisional basis, under the conditions determined under Article 39 for the year preceding that to which the draft budget relates.

(4) The Contracting States shall pay each month, on a provisional basis and in accordance with the scale referred to in Article 40, paragraphs 3 and 4, any special financial contributions necessary to ensure implementation of paragraphs 1 and 2 above. Article 39, paragraph 4, shall apply mutatis mutandis to these contributions.

Article 48

Budget implementation

(1) The President of the European Patent Office shall implement the budget and any amending or supplementary budget on his own responsibility and within the limits of the allocated appropriations.

(2) Within the budget, the President of the European Patent Office may, subject to the limits and conditions laid down in the Financial Regulations, transfer funds as between the various headings or sub-headings.

Article 49

Auditing of accounts

(1) The income and expenditure account and a balance sheet of the Organisation shall be examined by auditors whose independence is beyond doubt, appointed by the Administrative Council for a period of five years, which shall be renewable or extensible.

(2) The audit, which shall be based on vouchers and shall take place, if necessary, in situ, shall ascertain that all income has been received and all expenditure effected in a lawful and proper manner and that the financial management is sound. The auditors shall draw up a report after the end of each accounting period.

(3) The President of the European Patent Office shall annually submit to the Administrative Council the accounts of the preceding accounting period in respect of the budget and the balance sheet showing the assets and liabilities of the Organisation together with the report of the auditors.

(4) The Administrative Council shall approve the annual accounts together with the report of the auditors and shall give the President of the European Patent Office a discharge in respect of the implementation of the budget.

Article 50

Financial Regulations

The Financial Regulations shall in particular establish:

(a) the procedure relating to the establishment and implementation of the budget and for the rendering and auditing of accounts;

(b) the method and procedure whereby the payments and contributions provided for in Article 37 and the advances provided for in Article 41 are to be made available to the Organisation by the Contracting States;

(c) the rules concerning the responsibilities of accounting and paying officers and the arrangements for their supervision;

(d) the rates of interest provided for in Articles 39, 40 and 47;

(e) the method of calculating the contributions payable by virtue of Article 146;

(f) the composition of and duties to be assigned to a Budget and Finance Committee which should be set up by the Administrative Council.

Article 51

Rules relating to Fees

The Rules relating to Fees shall determine in particular the amounts of the fees and the ways in which they are to be paid.

Part II

SUBSTANTIVE PATENT LAW

Chapter I

Patentability

Article 52

Patentable inventions

(1) European patents shall be granted for any inventions which are susceptible of industrial application, which are new and which involve an inventive step.

(2) The following in particular shall not be regarded as inventions within the meaning of paragraph 1:

(a) discoveries, scientific theories and mathematical methods;

(b) aesthetic creations;

(c) schemes, rules and methods for performing mental acts, playing games or doing business, and programs for computers;

(d) presentations of information.

(3) The provisions of paragraph 2 shall exclude patentability of the subject-matter or activities referred to in that provision only to the extent to which a European patent application or European patent relates to such subject-matter or activities as such.

(4) Methods for treatment of the human or animal body by surgery or therapy and diagnostic methods practised on the human or animal body shall not be regarded as inventions which are susceptible of industrial application within the meaning of paragraph 1. This provision shall not apply to products, in particular substances or compositions, for use in any of these methods.

Article 53

Exceptions to patentability

European patents shall not be granted in respect of:

(a) inventions the publication or exploitation of which would be contrary to "ordre public" or morality, provided that the exploitation shall not be deemed to be so contrary merely because it is prohibited by law or regulation in some or all of the Contracting States;

(b) plant or animal varieties or essentially biological processes for the production of plants or animals; this provision does not apply to microbiological processes or the products thereof.

Article 54

Novelty

(1) An invention shall be considered to be new if it does not form part of the state of the art.

(2) The state of the art shall be held to comprise everything made available to the public by means of a written or oral description, by use, or in any other way, before the date of filing of the European patent application.

(3) Additionally, the content of European patent applications as filed, of which the dates of filing are prior to the date referred to in paragraph 2 and which were published under Article 93 on or after that date, shall be considered as comprised in the state of the art.

(4) Paragraph 3 shall be applied only in so far as a Contracting State designated in respect of the later application, was also designated in respect of the earlier application as published.

(5) The provisions of paragraphs 1 to 4 shall not exclude the patentability of any substance or composition, comprised in the state of the art, for use in a method referred to in Article 52, paragraph 4, provided that its use for any method referred to in that paragraph is not comprised in the state of the art.

Article 55

Non-prejudicial disclosures

(1) For the application of Article 54 a disclosure of the invention shall not be taken into consideration if it occurred no earlier than six months preceding the filing of the European patent application and if it was due to, or in consequence of:

(a) an evident abuse in relation to the applicant or his legal predecessor, or

(b) the fact that the applicant or his legal predecessor has displayed the invention at an official, or officially recognised, international exhibition falling within the terms of the Convention on international exhibitions signed at Paris on 22 November 1928 and last revised on 30 November 1972.

(2) In the case of paragraph 1(b), paragraph 1 shall apply only if the applicant states, when filing the European patent application, that the invention has been so displayed and files a supporting certificate within the period and under the conditions laid down in the Implementing Regulations.

Article 56

Inventive step

An invention shall be considered as involving an inventive step if, having regard to the state of the art, it is not obvious to a person skilled in the art. If the state of the art also includes documents within the meaning of Article 54, paragraph 3, these documents are not to be considered in deciding whether there has been an inventive step.

Article 57

Industrial application

An invention shall be considered as susceptible of industrial application if it can be made or used in any kind of industry, including agriculture.

Chapter II

Persons entitled to apply for and obtain European patents — Mention of the inventor

Article 58

Entitlement to file a European patent application

A European patent application may be filed by any natural or legal person, or any body equivalent to a legal person by virtue of the law governing it.

Article 59

Multiple applicants

A European patent application may also be filed either by joint applicants or by two or more applicants designating different Contracting States.

Article 60

Right to a European patent

(1) The right to a European patent shall belong to the inventor or his successor in title. If the inventor is an employee the right to the European patent shall be determined in accordance with the law of the State in which the employee is mainly employed; if the State in which the employee is mainly employed cannot be determined, the law to be applied shall be that of the State in which the employer has his place of business to which the employee is attached.

(2) If two or more persons have made an invention independently of each other, the right to the European patent shall belong to the person whose European patent application has the earliest date of filing; however, this provision shall apply only if this first application has been published under Article 93 and shall only have effect in respect of the Contracting States designated in that application as published.

(3) For the purposes of proceedings before the European Patent Office, the applicant shall be deemed to be entitled to exercise the right to the European patent.

Article 61

European patent applications by persons not having the right to a European patent

(1) If by a final decision it is adjudged that a person referred to in Article 60, paragraph 1, other than the applicant, is entitled to the grant of a European patent, that person may, within a period of three months after the decision has become final, provided that the European patent has not yet been granted, in respect of those Contracting States designated in the European patent application in which the decision has been taken or recognised, or has to be recognised on the basis of the Protocol on Recognition annexed to this Convention:

(a) prosecute the application as his own application in place of the applicant,

(b) file a new European patent application in respect of the same invention, or

(c) request that the application be refused.

(2) The provisions of Article 76, paragraph 1, shall apply mutatis mutandis to a new application filed under paragraph 1.

(3) The procedure to be followed in carrying out the provisions of paragraph 1, the special conditions applying to a new application filed under paragraph 1 and the time limit for paying the filing, search and designation fees on it are laid down in the Implementing Regulations.

Article 62

Right of the inventor to be mentioned

The inventor shall have the right, vis-à-vis the applicant for or proprietor of a European patent, to be mentioned as such before the European Patent Office.

Chapter III

Effects of the European patent and the European patent application

Article 63

Term of the European patent

(1) The term of the European patent shall be 20 years as from the date of filing of the application.

(2) Nothing in the preceding paragraph shall limit the right of a Contracting State to extend the term of a European patent, or to grant corresponding protection which follows immediately on expiry of the term of the patent, under the same conditions as those applying to national patents:

(a) in order to take account of a state of war or similar emergency conditions affecting that State;

(b) if the subject-matter of the European patent is a product or a process of manufacturing a product or a use of a product which has to undergo an administrative authorisation procedure required by law before it can be put on the market in that State.

(3) Paragraph 2 shall apply mutatis mutandis to European patents granted jointly for a group of Contracting States in accordance with Article 142.

(4) A Contracting State which makes provision for extension of the term or corresponding protection under paragraph 2(b) may, in accordance with an agreement concluded with the Organisation, entrust to the European Patent Office tasks associated with implementation of the relevant provisions.

Article 64

Rights conferred by a European patent

(1) A European patent shall, subject to the provisions of paragraph 2, confer on its proprietor from the date of publication of the mention of its grant, in each Contracting State in respect of which it is granted, the same rights as would be conferred by a national patent granted in that State.

(2) If the subject-matter of the European patent is a process, the protection conferred by the patent shall extend to the products directly obtained by such process.

(3) Any infringement of a European patent shall be dealt with by national law.

Article 65

Translation of the specification of the European patent

(1) Any Contracting State may prescribe that if the text, in which the European Patent Office intends to grant a European patent or maintain a European patent as amended for that State, is not drawn up in one of its official languages, the applicant for or proprietor of the patent shall supply to its central industrial property office a translation of this text in one of its official languages at his option or, where that State has prescribed the use of one specific official language, in that language. The period for supplying the translation shall end three months after the date on which the mention of the grant of the European patent or of the maintenance of the European patent as amended is published in the European Patent Bulletin, unless the State concerned prescribes a longer period.

(2) Any Contracting State which has adopted provisions pursuant to paragraph 1 may prescribe that the applicant for or proprietor of the patent must pay all or part of the costs of publication of such translation within a period laid down by that State.

(3) Any Contracting State may prescribe that in the event of failure to observe the provisions adopted in accordance with paragraphs 1 and 2, the European patent shall be deemed to be void ab initio in that State.

Article 66

Equivalence of European filing with national filing

A European patent application which has been accorded a date of filing shall, in the designated Contracting States, be equivalent to a regular national filing, where appropriate with the priority claimed for the European patent application.

Article 67

Rights conferred by a European patent application after publication

(1) A European patent application shall, from the date of its publication under Article 93, provisionally confer upon the applicant such protection as is conferred by Article 64, in the Contracting States designated in the application as published.

(2) Any Contracting State may prescribe that a European patent application shall not confer such protection as is conferred by Article 64. However, the protection attached to the publication of the European patent application may not be less than that which the laws of the State concerned attach to the compulsory publication of unexamined national patent applications. In any event, every State shall ensure at least that, from the date of publication of a European patent application, the applicant can claim compensation reasonable in the circumstances from any person who has used the invention in the said State in circumstances where that person would be liable under national law for infringement of a national patent.

(3) Any Contracting State which does not have as an official language the language of the proceedings, may prescribe that provisional protection in accordance with paragraphs 1 and 2 above shall not be effective until such time as a translation of the claims in one of its official languages at the option of the applicant or, where that State has prescribed the use of one specific official language, in that language:

(a) has been made available to the public in the manner prescribed by national law, or

(b) has been communicated to the person using the invention in the said State.

(4) The European patent application shall be deemed never to have had the effects set out in paragraphs 1 and 2 above when it has been withdrawn, deemed to be withdrawn or finally refused. The same shall apply in respect of the effects of the European patent application in a Contracting State the designation of which is withdrawn or deemed to be withdrawn.

Article 68

Effect of revocation of the European patent

The European patent application and the resulting patent shall be deemed not to have had, as from the outset, the effects specified in Articles 64 and 67, to the extent that the patent has been revoked in opposition proceedings.

Article 69

Extent of protection

(1) The extent of the protection conferred by a European patent or a European patent application shall be determined by the terms of the claims. Nevertheless, the description and drawings shall be used to interpret the claims.

(2) For the period up to grant of the European patent, the extent of the protection conferred by the European patent application shall be determined by the latest filed claims contained in the publication under Article 93. However, the European patent as granted or as amended in opposition proceedings shall determine retroactively the protection conferred by the European patent application, in so far as such protection is not thereby extended.

Article 70

Authentic text of a European patent application or European patent

(1) The text of a European patent application or a European patent in the language of the proceedings shall be the authentic text in any proceedings before the European Patent Office and in any Contracting State.

(2) However, in the case referred to in Article 14, paragraph 2, the original text shall, in proceedings before the European Patent Office, constitute the basis for determining whether the subject-matter of the application or patent extends beyond the content of the application as filed.

(3) Any Contracting State may provide that a translation, as provided for in this Convention, in an official language of that State, shall in that State be regarded as authentic, except for revocation proceedings, in the event of the application or patent in the language of the translation conferring protection which is narrower than that conferred by it in the language of the proceedings.

(4) Any Contracting State which adopts a provision under paragraph 3:

(a) must allow the applicant for or proprietor of the patent to file a corrected translation of the European patent application or European patent. Such corrected translation shall not have any legal effect until any conditions established by the Contracting State under Article 65, paragraph 2, and Article 67, paragraph 3, have been complied with mutatis mutandis;

(b) may prescribe that any person who, in that State, in good faith is using or has made effective and serious preparations for using an invention the use of which would not constitute infringement of the application or patent in the original translation may, after the corrected translation takes effect, continue such use in the course of his business or for the needs thereof without payment.

Chapter IV

The European patent application as an object of property

Article 71

Transfer and constitution of rights

A European patent application may be transferred or give rise to rights for one or more of the designated Contracting States.

Article 72

Assignment

An assignment of a European patent application shall be made in writing and shall require the signature of the parties to the contract.

Article 73

Contractual licensing

A European patent application may be licensed in whole or in part for the whole or part of the territories of the designated Contracting States.

Article 74

Law applicable

Unless otherwise specified in this Convention, the European patent application as an object of property shall, in each designated Contracting State and with effect for such State, be subject to the law applicable in that State to national patent applications

Part III

APPLICATION FOR EUROPEAN PATENTS

Chapter I

Filing and requirements of the European patent application

Article 75

Filing of the European patent application

(1) A European patent application may be filed:

(a) at the European Patent Office at Munich or its branch at The Hague, or

(b) if the law of a Contracting State so permits, at the central industrial property office or other competent authority of that State. An application filed in this way shall have the same effect as if it had been filed on the same date at the European Patent Office.

(2) The provisions of paragraph 1 shall not preclude the application of legislative or regulatory provisions which, in any Contracting State:

(a) govern inventions which, owing to the nature of their subject-matter, may not be communicated abroad without the prior authorisation of the competent authorities of that State, or

(b) prescribe that each application is to be filed initially with a national authority or make direct filing with another authority subject to prior authorisation.

(3) No Contracting State may provide for or allow the filing of European divisional applications with an authority referred to in paragraph 1(b).

Article 76

European divisional applications

(1) A European divisional application must be filed directly with the European Patent Office at Munich or its branch at The Hague. It may be filed only in respect of subject-matter which does not extend beyond the content of the earlier application as filed; in so far as this provision is complied with, the divisional application shall be deemed to have been filed on the date of filing of the earlier application and shall have the benefit of any right to priority.

(2) The European divisional application shall not designate Contracting States which were not designated in the earlier application.

(3) The procedure to be followed in carrying out the provisions of paragraph 1, the special conditions to be complied with by a divisional application and the time limit for paying the filing, search and designation fees are laid down in the Implementing Regulations.

Article 77

Forwarding of European patent applications

(1) The central industrial property office of a Contracting State shall be obliged to forward to the European Patent Office, in the shortest time compatible with the application of national law concerning the secrecy of inventions in the interests of the State, any European patent applications which have been filed with that office or with other competent authorities in that State.

(2) The Contracting States shall take all appropriate steps to ensure that European patent applications, the subject of which is obviously not liable to secrecy by virtue of the law referred to in paragraph 1, shall be forwarded to the European Patent Office within six weeks after filing.

(3) European patent applications which require further examination as to their liability to secrecy shall be forwarded in such manner as to reach the European Patent Office within four months after filing, or, where priority has been claimed, fourteen months after the date of priority.

(4) A European patent application, the subject of which has been made secret, shall not be forwarded to the European Patent Office.

(5) European patent applications which do not reach the European Patent Office before the end of the fourteenth month after filing or, if priority has been claimed, after the date of priority, shall be deemed to be withdrawn. The filing, search and designation fees shall be refunded.

Article 78

Requirements of the European patent application

(1) A European patent application shall contain:

(a) a request for the grant of a European patent;

(b) a description of the invention;

(c) one or more claims;

(d) any drawings referred to in the description or the claims;

(e) an abstract.

(2) A European patent application shall be subject to the payment of the filing fee and the search fee within one month after the filing of the application.

(3) A European patent application must satisfy the conditions laid down in the Implementing Regulations.

Article 79

Designation of Contracting States

(1) The request for the grant of a European patent shall contain the designation of the Contracting State or States in which protection for the invention is desired.

(2) The designation of a contracting state shall be subject to the payment of the designation fee. The designation fees shall be paid within six months of the date on which the European Patent Bulletin mentions the publication of the European search report.

(3) The designation of a Contracting State may be withdrawn at any time up to the grant of the European patent. Withdrawal of the designation of all the Contracting States shall be deemed to be a withdrawal of the European patent application. Designation fees shall not be refunded.

Article 80

Date of filing

The date of filing of a European patent application shall be the date on which documents filed by the applicant contain:

(a) an indication that a European patent is sought;

(b) the designation of at least one Contracting State;

(c) information identifying the applicant;

(d) a description and one or more claims in one of the languages referred to in Article 14, paragraphs 1 and 2, even though the description and the claims do not comply with the other requirements of this Convention.

Article 81

Designation of the inventor

The European patent application shall designate the inventor. If the applicant is not the inventor or is not the sole inventor, the designation shall contain a statement indicating the origin of the right to the European patent.

Article 82

Unity of invention

The European patent application shall relate to one invention only or to a group of inventions so linked as to form a single general inventive concept.

Article 83

Disclosure of the invention

The European patent application must disclose the invention in a manner sufficiently clear and complete for it to be carried out by a person skilled in the art.

Article 84

The claims

The claims shall define the matter for which protection is sought. They shall be clear and concise and be supported by the description.

Article 85

The abstract

The abstract shall merely serve for use as technical information; it may not be taken into account for any other purpose, in particular not for the purpose of interpreting the scope of the protection sought nor for the purpose of applying Article 54, paragraph 3.

Article 86

Renewal fees for European patent applications

(1) Renewal fees shall be paid to the European Patent Office in accordance with the Implementing Regulations in respect of European patent applications. These fees shall be due in respect of the third year and each subsequent year, calculated from the date of filing of the application.

(2) When a renewal fee has not been paid on or before the due date, the fee may be validly paid within six months of the said date, provided that the additional fee is paid at the same time.

(3) If the renewal fee and any additional fee have not been paid in due time the European patent application shall be deemed to be withdrawn. The European Patent Office alone shall be competent to decide this.

(4) The obligation to pay renewal fees shall terminate with the payment of the renewal fee due in respect of the year in which the mention of the grant of the European patent is published.

Chapter II

Priority

Article 87

Priority right

(1) A person who has duly filed in or for any State party to the Paris Convention for the Protection of Industrial Property, an application for a patent or for the registration of a utility model or for a utility certificate or for an inventor's certificate, or his successors in title, shall enjoy, for the purpose of filing a European patent application in respect of the same invention, a right of priority during a period of twelve months from the date of filing of the first application.

(2) Every filing that is equivalent to a regular national filing under the national law of the State where it was made or under bilateral or multilateral agreements, including this Convention, shall be recognised as giving rise to a right of priority.

(3) By a regular national filing is meant any filing that is sufficient to establish the date on which the application was filed, whatever may be the outcome of the application.

(4) A subsequent application for the same subject-matter as a previous first application and filed in or in respect of the same State shall be considered as the first application for the purposes of determining priority, provided that, at the date of filing the subsequent application, the previous application has been withdrawn, abandoned or refused, without being open to public inspection and without leaving any rights outstanding, and has not served as a basis for claiming a right of priority. The previous application may not thereafter serve as a basis for claiming a right of priority.

(5) If the first filing has been made in a State which is not a party to the Paris Convention for the Protection of Industrial Property, paragraphs 1 to 4 shall apply only in so far as that State, according to a notification published by the Administrative Council, and by virtue of bilateral or multilateral agreements, grants on the basis of a first filing made at the European Patent Office as well as on the basis of a first filing made in or for any Contracting State and subject to conditions equivalent to those laid down in the Paris Convention, a right of priority having equivalent effect.

Article 88

Claiming priority

(1) An applicant for a European patent desiring to take advantage of the priority of a previous application shall file a declaration of priority, a copy of the previous application and, if the language of the latter is not one of the official languages of the European Patent Office, a translation of it in one of such official languages. The procedure to be followed in carrying out these provisions is laid down in the Implementing Regulations.

(2) Multiple priorities may be claimed in respect of a European patent application, notwithstanding the fact that they originated in different countries. Where appropriate, multiple priorities may be claimed for any one claim. Where multiple priorities are claimed, time limits which run from the date of priority shall run from the earliest date of priority.

(3) If one or more priorities are claimed in respect of a European patent application, the right of priority shall cover only those elements of the European patent application which are included in the application or applications whose priority is claimed.

(4) If certain elements of the invention for which priority is claimed do not appear among the claims formulated in the previous application, priority may nonetheless be granted, provided that the documents of the previous application as a whole specifically disclose such elements.

Article 89

Effect of priority right

The right of priority shall have the effect that the date of priority shall count as the date of filing of the European patent application for the purposes of Article 54, paragraphs 2 and 3, and Article 60, paragraph 2.

Part IV

PROCEDURE UP TO GRANT

Article 90

Examination on filing

(1) The Receiving Section shall examine whether:

(a) the European patent application satisfies the requirements for the accordance of a date of filing;

(b) the filing fee and the search fee have been paid in due time;

(c) in the case provided for in Article 14, paragraph 2, the translation of the European patent application in the language of the proceedings has been filed in due time.

(2) If a date of filing cannot be accorded, the Receiving Section shall give the applicant an opportunity to correct the deficiencies in accordance with the Implementing Regulations. If the deficiencies are not remedied in due time, the application shall not be dealt with as a European patent application.

(3) If the filing fee and the search fee have not been paid in due time or, in the case provided for in Article 14, paragraph 2, the translation of the application in the language of the proceedings has not been filed in due time, the application shall be deemed to be withdrawn.

Article 91

Examination as to formal requirements

(1) If a European patent application has been accorded a date of filing, and is not deemed to be withdrawn by virtue of Article 90, paragraph 3, the Receiving Section shall examine whether:

(a) the requirements of Article 133, paragraph 2, have been satisfied;

(b) the application meets the physical requirements laid down in the Implementing Regulations for the implementation of this provision;

(c) the abstract has been filed;

(d) the request for the grant of a European patent satisfies the mandatory provisions of the Implementing Regulations concerning its content and, where appropriate, whether the requirements of this Convention concerning the claim to priority have been satisfied;

(e) the designation fees have been paid;

(f) the designation of the inventor has been made in accordance with Article 81;

(g) the drawings referred to in Article 78, paragraph 1(d), were filed on the date of filing of the application.

(2) Where the Receiving Section notes that there are deficiencies which may be corrected, it shall give the applicant an opportunity to correct them in accordance with the Implementing Regulations.

(3) If any deficiencies noted in the examination under paragraph 1(a) to (d) are not corrected in accordance with the Implementing Regulations, the application shall be refused; where the provisions referred to in paragraph 1(d) concern the right of priority, this right shall be lost for the application.

(4) Where, in the case referred to in paragraph 1(e), the designation fee has not been paid in due time in respect of any designated State, the designation of that State shall be deemed to be withdrawn.

(5) Where, in the case referred to in paragraph 1(f), the omission of the designation of the inventor is not, in accordance with the Implementing Regulations and subject to the exceptions laid down therein, corrected within 16 months after the date of filing of the European patent application or, if priority is claimed, after the date of priority, the application shall be deemed to be withdrawn.

(6) Where, in the case referred to in paragraph 1(g), the drawings were not filed on the date of filing of the application and no steps have been taken to correct the deficiency in accordance with the Implementing Regulations, either the application shall be re-dated to the date of filing of the drawings or any reference to the drawings in the application shall be deemed to be deleted, according to the choice exercised by the applicant in accordance with the Implementing Regulations.

Article 92

The drawing up of the European search report

(1) If a European patent application has been accorded a date of filing and is not deemed to be withdrawn by virtue of Article 90, paragraph 3, the Search Division shall draw up the European search report on the basis of the claims, with due regard to the description and any drawings, in the form prescribed in the Implementing Regulations.

(2) Immediately after it has been drawn up, the European search report shall be transmitted to the applicant together with copies of any cited documents.

Article 93

Publication of a European patent application

(1) A European patent application shall be published as soon as possible after the expiry of a period of eighteen months from the date of filing or, if priority has been claimed, as from the date of priority. Nevertheless, at the request of the applicant the application may be published before the expiry of the period referred to above. It shall be published simultaneously with the publication of the specification of the European patent when the grant of the patent has become effective before the expiry of the period referred to above.

(2) The publication shall contain the description, the claims and any drawings as filed and, in an annex, the European search report and the abstract, in so far as the latter are available before the termination of the technical preparations for publication. If the European search report and the abstract have not been published at the same time as the application, they shall be published separately.

Article 94

Request for examination

(1) The European Patent Office shall examine, on written request, whether a European patent application and the invention to which it relates meet the requirements of this Convention.

(2) A request for examination may be filed by the applicant up to the end of six months after the date on which the European Patent Bulletin mentions the publication of the European search report. The request shall not be deemed to be filed until after the examination fee has been paid. The request may not be withdrawn.

(3) If no request for examination has been filed by the end of the period referred to in paragraph 2, the application shall be deemed to be withdrawn.

Article 95

Extension of the period within which requests for examination may be filed

(1) The Administrative Council may extend the period within which requests for examination may be filed if it

is established that European patent applications cannot be examined in due time.

(2) If the Administrative Council extends the period, it may decide that third parties will be entitled to make requests for examination. In such cases, it shall determine the appropriate rules in the Implementing Regulations.

(3) Any decision of the Administrative Council to extend the period shall apply only in respect of applications filed after the publication of such decision in the Official Journal of the European Patent Office.

(4) If the Administrative Council extends the period, it must lay down measures with a view to restoring the original period as soon as possible.

Article 96

Examination of the European patent application

(1) If the applicant for a European patent has filed the request for examination before the European search report has been transmitted to him, the European Patent Office shall invite him after the transmission of the report to indicate, within a period to be determined, whether he desires to proceed further with the European patent application.

(2) If the examination of a European patent application reveals that the application or the invention to which it relates does not meet the requirements of this Convention, the Examining Division shall invite the applicant, in accordance with the Implementing Regulations and as often as necessary, to file his observations within a period to be fixed by the Examining Division.

(3) If the applicant fails to reply in due time to any invitation under paragraph 1 or paragraph 2, the application shall be deemed to be withdrawn.

Article 97

Refusal or grant

(1) The Examining Division shall refuse a European patent application if it is of the opinion that such application or the invention to which it relates does not meet the requirements of this Convention, except where a different sanction is provided for by this Convention.

(2) If the Examining Division is of the opinion that the application and the invention to which it relates meet the requirements of this Convention, it shall decide to grant the European patent for the designated Contracting States provided that:

(a) it is established, in accordance with the provisions of the Implementing Regulations, that the applicant approves the text in which the Examining Division intends to grant the patent;

(b) the fees for grant and printing are paid within the time limit prescribed in the Implementing Regulations;

(c) the renewal fees and any additional fees already due have been paid.

(3) If the fees for grant and printing are not paid in due time, the application shall be deemed to be withdrawn.

(4) The decision to grant a European patent shall not take effect until the date on which the European Patent Bulletin mentions the grant. This mention shall be published at least 3 months after the start of the time limit referred to in paragraph 2(b).

(5) Provision may be made in the Implementing Regulations for the applicant to file a translation, in the two official languages of the European Patent Office other than the language of the proceedings, of the claims appearing in the text in which the Examining Division intends to grant the patent. In such case, the period laid down in paragraph 4 shall be at least five months. If the translation has not been filed in due time, the application shall be deemed to be withdrawn.

(6) At the request of the applicant, mention of grant of the European patent shall be published before expiry of the time limit under paragraph4 or5. Such request may only be made if the requirements pursuant to paragraphs2 and5 are met.

Article 98

Publication of a specification of the European patent

At the same time as it publishes the mention of the grant of the European patent, the European Patent Office shall publish a specification of the European patent containing the description, the claims and any drawings.

Part V

OPPOSITION PROCEDURE

Article 99

Opposition

(1) Within nine months from the publication of the mention of the grant of the European patent, any person may give notice to the European Patent Office of opposition to the European patent granted. Notice of opposition shall be filed in a written reasoned statement. It shall not be deemed to have been filed until the opposition fee has been paid.

(2) The opposition shall apply to the European patent in all the Contracting States in which that patent has effect.

(3) An opposition may be filed even if the European patent has been surrendered or has lapsed for all the designated States.

(4) Opponents shall be parties to the opposition proceedings as well as the proprietor of the patent.

(5) Where a person provides evidence that in a Contracting State, following a final decision, he has been entered in the patent register of such State instead of the previous proprietor, such person shall, at his request, replace the previous proprietor in respect of such State. By derogation from Article 118, the previous proprietor and the person making the request shall not be deemed to be joint proprietors unless both so request.

Article 100

Grounds for opposition

Opposition may only be filed on the grounds that:

(a) the subject-matter of the European patent is not patentable within the terms of Articles 52 to 57;

(b) the European patent does not disclose the invention in a manner sufficiently clear and complete for it to be carried out by a person skilled in the art;

(c) the subject-matter of the European patent extends beyond the content of the application as filed, or, if the patent was granted on a divisional application or on a new application filed in accordance with Article 61, beyond the content of the earlier application as filed.

Article 101

Examination of the opposition

(1) If the opposition is admissible, the Opposition Division shall examine whether the grounds for opposition laid down in Article 100 prejudice the maintenance of the European patent.

(2) In the examination of the opposition, which shall be conducted in accordance with the provisions of the Implementing Regulations, the Opposition Division shall invite the parties, as often as necessary, to file observations, within a period to be fixed by the Opposition Division, on communications from another party or issued by itself.

Article 102

Revocation or maintenance of the European patent

(1) If the Opposition Division is of the opinion that the grounds for opposition mentioned in Article 100 prejudice the maintenance of the European patent, it shall revoke the patent.

(2) If the Opposition Division is of the opinion that the grounds for opposition mentioned in Article 100 do not prejudice the maintenance of the patent unamended, it shall reject the opposition.

(3) If the Opposition Division is of the opinion that, taking into consideration the amendments made by the proprietor of the patent during the opposition proceedings, the patent and the invention to which it relates meet the requirements of this Convention, it shall decide to maintain the patent as amended, provided that:

(a) it is established, in accordance with the provisions of the Implementing Regulations, that the proprietor of the patent approves the text in which the Opposition Division intends to maintain the patent;

(b) the fee for the printing of a new specification of the European patent is paid within the time limit prescribed in the Implementing Regulations.

(4) If the fee for the printing of a new specification is not paid in due time, the patent shall be revoked.

(5) Provision may be made in the Implementing Regulations for the proprietor of the patent to file a translation of any amended claims in the two official languages of the European Patent Office other than the language of the proceedings. If the translation has not been filed in due time the patent shall be revoked.

Article 103

Publication of a new specification of the European patent

If a European patent is amended under Article 102, paragraph 3, the European Patent Office shall, at the same time as it publishes the mention of the opposition decision, publish a new specification of the European patent containing the description, the claims and any drawings, in the amended form.

Article 104

Costs

(1) Each party to the proceedings shall meet the costs he has incurred unless a decision of an Opposition Division or Board of Appeal, for reasons of equity, orders, in accordance with the Implementing Regulations, a different apportionment of costs incurred during taking of evidence or in oral proceedings.

(2) On request, the registry of the Opposition Division shall fix the amount of the costs to be paid under a decision apportioning them. The fixing of the costs by the registry may be reviewed by a decision of the Opposition Division on a request filed within the period laid down in the Implementing Regulations.

(3) Any final decision of the European Patent Office fixing the amount of costs shall be dealt with, for the purpose of enforcement in the Contracting States, in the same way as a final decision given by a civil court of the State in the territory of which enforcement is to be carried out. Verification of such decision shall be limited to its authenticity.

Article 105

Intervention of the assumed infringer

(1) In the event of an opposition to a European patent being filed, any third party who proves that proceedings for infringement of the same patent have been instituted against him may, after the opposition period has expired, intervene in the opposition proceedings, if he gives notice of intervention within three months of the date on which the infringement proceedings were instituted. The same shall apply in respect of any third party who proves both that the proprietor of the patent has requested that he cease alleged infringement of the patent and that he has instituted proceedings for a court ruling that he is not infringing the patent.

(2) Notice of intervention shall be filed in a written reasoned statement. It shall not be deemed to have been filed until the opposition fee has been paid. Thereafter the intervention shall, subject to any exceptions laid down in the Implementing Regulations, be treated as an opposition.

Part VI

APPEALS PROCEDURE

Article 106

Decisions subject to appeal

(1) An appeal shall lie from decisions of the Receiving Section, Examining Divisions, Opposition Divisions and the Legal Division. It shall have suspensive effect.

(2) An appeal may be filed against the decision of the Opposition Division even if the European patent has been surrendered or has lapsed for all the designated States.

(3) A decision which does not terminate proceedings as regards one of the parties can only be appealed together with the final decision, unless the decision allows separate appeal.

(4) The apportionment of costs of opposition proceedings cannot be the sole subject of an appeal.

(5) A decision fixing the amount of costs of opposition proceedings cannot be appealed unless the amount is in excess of that laid down in the Rules relating to Fees.

Article 107

Persons entitled to appeal and to be parties to appeal proceedings

Any party to proceedings adversely affected by a decision may appeal. Any other parties to the proceedings shall be parties to the appeal proceedings as of right.

Article 108

Time limit and form of appeal

Notice of appeal must be filed in writing at the European Patent Office within two months after the date of notification of the decision appealed from. The notice shall not be deemed to have been filed until after the fee for appeal has been paid. Within four months after the date of notification of the decision, a written statement setting out the grounds of appeal must be filed.

Article 109

Interlocutory revision

(1) If the department whose decision is contested considers the appeal to be admissible and well founded, it shall rectify its decision. This shall not apply where the appellant is opposed by another party to the proceedings.

(2) If the appeal is not allowed within three months after receipt of the statement of grounds, it shall be remitted to the Board of Appeal without delay, and without comment as to its merit.

Article 110

Examination of appeals

(1) If the appeal is admissible, the Board of Appeal shall examine whether the appeal is allowable.

(2) In the examination of the appeal, which shall be conducted in accordance with the provisions of the Implementing Regulations, the Board of Appeal shall invite the parties, as often as necessary, to file observations, within a period to be fixed by the Board of Appeal, on communications from another party or issued by itself.

(3) If the applicant fails to reply in due time to an invitation under paragraph 2, the European patent application shall be deemed to be withdrawn, unless the decision under appeal was taken by the Legal Division.

Article 111

Decision in respect of appeals

(1) Following the examination as to the allowability of the appeal, the Board of Appeal shall decide on the appeal. The Board of Appeal may either exercise any power within the competence of the department which was responsible for the decision appealed or remit the case to that department for further prosecution.

(2) If the Board of Appeal remits the case for further prosecution to the department whose decision was appealed, that department shall be bound by the ratio decidendi of the Board of Appeal, in so far as the facts are the same. If the decision which was appealed emanated from the Receiving Section, the Examining Division shall similarly be bound by the ratio decidendi of the Board of Appeal.

Article 112

Decision or opinion of the Enlarged Board of Appeal

(1) In order to ensure uniform application of the law, or if an important point of law arises:

(a) the Board of Appeal shall, during proceedings on a case and either of its own motion or following a request from a party to the appeal, refer any question to the Enlarged Board of Appeal if it considers that a decision is required for the above purposes. If the Board of Appeal rejects the request, it shall give the reasons in its final decision;

(b) the President of the European Patent Office may refer a point of law to the Enlarged Board of Appeal where two Boards of Appeal have given different decisions on that question.

(2) In the cases covered by paragraph 1(a) the parties to the appeal proceedings shall be parties to the proceedings before the Enlarged Board of Appeal.

(3) The decision of the Enlarged Board of Appeal referred to in paragraph 1(a) shall be binding on the Board of Appeal in respect of the appeal in question.

Part VII

COMMON PROVISIONS

Chapter I

Common provisions governing procedure

Article 113

Basis of decisions

(1) The decisions of the European Patent Office may only be based on grounds or evidence on which the parties concerned have had an opportunity to present their comments.

(2) The European Patent Office shall consider and decide upon the European patent application or the European patent only in the text submitted to it, or agreed, by the applicant for or proprietor of the patent.

Article 114

Examination by the European Patent Office of its own motion

(1) In proceedings before it, the European Patent Office shall examine the facts of its own motion; it shall not be restricted in this examination to the facts, evidence and arguments provided by the parties and the relief sought.

(2) The European Patent Office may disregard facts or evidence which are not submitted in due time by the parties concerned.

Article 115

Observations by third parties

(1) Following the publication of the European patent application, any person may present observations concerning the patentability of the invention in respect of which the application has been filed. Such observations must be filed in writing and must include a statement of the grounds on which they are based. That person shall not be a party to the proceedings before the European Patent Office.

(2) The observations referred to in paragraph 1 shall be communicated to the applicant for or proprietor of the patent who may comment on them.

Article 116

Oral proceedings

(1) Oral proceedings shall take place either at the instance of the European Patent Office if it considers this to be expedient or at the request of any party to the proceedings. However, the European Patent Office may reject a request for further oral proceedings before the same department where the parties and the subject of the proceedings are the same.

(2) Nevertheless, oral proceedings shall take place before the Receiving Section at the request of the applicant only where the Receiving Section considers this to be expedient or where it envisages refusing the European patent application.

(3) Oral proceedings before the Receiving Section, the Examining Divisions and the Legal Division shall not be public.

(4) Oral proceedings, including delivery of the decision, shall be public, as regards the Boards of Appeal and the Enlarged Board of Appeal, after publication of the European patent application, and also before the Opposition Divisions, in so far as the department before which the proceedings are taking place does not decide otherwise in cases where admission of the public could have serious and unjustified disadvantages, in particular for a party to the proceedings.

Article 117

Taking of evidence

(1) In any proceedings before an Examining Division, an Opposition Division, the Legal Division or a Board of Appeal the means of giving or obtaining evidence shall include the following:

(a) hearing the parties;

(b) requests for information;

(c) the production of documents;

(d) hearing the witnesses;

(e) opinions by experts;

(f) inspection;

(g) sworn statements in writing.

(2) The Examining Division, Opposition Division or Board of Appeal may commission one of its members to examine the evidence adduced.

(3) If the European Patent Office considers it necessary for a party, witness or expert to give evidence orally, it shall either:

(a) issue a summons to the person concerned to appear before it, or

(b) request, in accordance with the provisions of Article 131, paragraph 2, the competent court in the country of residence of the person concerned to take such evidence.

(4) A party, witness or expert who is summoned before the European Patent Office may request the latter to allow his evidence to be heard by a competent court in his country of residence. On receipt of such a request, or if there has been no reply to the summons by the expiry of a period fixed by the European Patent Office in the summons, the European Patent Office may, in accordance with the provisions of Article 131, paragraph 2, request the competent court to hear the person concerned.

(5) If a party, witness or expert gives evidence before the European Patent Office, the latter may, if it considers it advisable for the evidence to be given on oath or in an equally binding form, request the competent court in the country of residence of the person concerned to re-examine his evidence under such conditions.

(6) When the European Patent Office requests a competent court to take evidence, it may request the court to take the evidence on oath or in an equally binding form and to permit a member of the department concerned to attend the hearing and question the party, witness or expert either through the intermediary of the court or directly.

Article 118

Unity of the European patent application or European patent

Where the applicants for or proprietors of a European patent are not the same in respect of different designated Contracting States, they shall be regarded as joint applicants or proprietors for the purposes of proceedings before the European Patent Office. The unity of the application or patent in these proceedings shall not be affected; in particular the text of the application or patent shall be uniform for all designated Contracting States unless otherwise provided for in this Convention.

Article 119

Notification

The European Patent Office shall, as a matter of course, notify those concerned of decisions and summonses, and of any notice or other communication from which a time limit is reckoned, or of which those concerned must be notified under other provisions of this Convention, or of which notification has been ordered by the President of the European Patent Office. Notifications may, where exceptional circumstances so require, be given through the intermediary of the central industrial property offices of the Contracting States.

Article 120

Time limits

The Implementing Regulations shall specify:

(a) the manner of computation of time limits and the conditions under which such time limits may be extended, either because the European Patent Office or the authorities referred to in Article 75, paragraph 1(b), are not open to receive documents or because mail is not delivered in the localities in which the European Patent Office or such authorities are situated or because postal services are generally interrupted or subsequently dislocated;

(b) the minima and maxima for time limits to be determined by the European Patent Office.

Article 121

Further processing of the European patent application

(1) If the European patent application is to be refused or is refused or deemed to be withdrawn following failure to reply within a time limit set by the European Patent Office, the legal consequence provided for shall not ensue or, if it has already ensued, shall be retracted if the applicant requests further processing of the application.

(2) The request shall be filed in writing within two months of the date on which either the decision to refuse the application or the communication that the application is deemed to be withdrawn was notified. The omitted act must be completed within this time limit. The request shall not be deemed to have been filed until the fee for further processing has been paid.

(3) The department competent to decide on the omitted act shall decide on the request.

Article 122

Restitutio in integrum

(1) The applicant for or proprietor of a European patent who, in spite of all due care required by the circumstances having been taken, was unable to observe a time limit vis-à-vis the European Patent Office shall, upon application, have his rights re-established if the non-observance in question has the direct consequence, by virtue of this Convention, of causing the refusal of the European patent application, or of a request, or the deeming of the European patent application to have been withdrawn, or the revocation of the European patent, or the loss of any other right or means of redress.

(2) The application must be filed in writing within two months from the removal of the cause of non-compliance with the time limit. The omitted act must be completed within this period. The application shall only be admissible within the year immediately following the expiry of the unobserved time limit. In the case of non-payment of a renewal fee, the period specified in Article 86, paragraph 2, shall be deducted from the period of one year.

(3) The application must state the grounds on which it is based, and must set out the facts on which it relies. It shall not be deemed to be filed until after the fee for re-establishment of rights has been paid.

(4) The department competent to decide on the omitted act shall decide upon the application.

(5) The provisions of this Article shall not be applicable to the time limits referred to in paragraph 2 of this Article, Article 61, paragraph 3, Article 76, paragraph 3, Article 78, paragraph 2, Article 79, paragraph 2, Article 87, paragraph 1, and Article 94, paragraph 2.

(6) Any person who, in a designated Contracting State, in good faith has used or made effective and serious preparations for using an invention which is the subject of a published European patent application or a European patent in the course of the period between the loss of rights referred to in paragraph 1 and publication of the mention of re-establishment of those rights, may without payment continue such use in the course of his business or for the needs thereof.

(7) Nothing in this Article shall limit the right of a Contracting State to grant restitutio in integrum in respect of time limits provided for in this Convention and to be observed vis-à-vis the authorities of such State.

Article 123

Amendments

(1) The conditions under which a European patent application or a European patent may be amended in proceedings before the European Patent Office are laid down in the Implementing Regulations. In any case, an applicant shall be allowed at least one opportunity of amending the description, claims and drawings of his own volition.

(2) A European patent application or a European patent may not be amended in such a way that it contains subject-matter which extends beyond the content of the application as filed.

(3) The claims of the European patent may not be amended during opposition proceedings in such a way as to extend the protection conferred.

Article 124

Information concerning national patent applications

(1) The Examining Division or the Board of Appeal may invite the applicant to indicate, within a period to be determined by it, the States in which he has made applications for national patents for the whole or part of the invention to which the European patent application relates, and to give the reference numbers of the said applications.

(2) If the applicant fails to reply in due time to an invitation under paragraph 1, the European patent application shall be deemed to be withdrawn.

Article 125

Reference to general principles

In the absence of procedural provisions in this Convention, the European Patent Office shall take into account the principles of procedural law generally recognised in the Contracting States.

Article 126

Termination of financial obligations

(1) Rights of the Organisation to the payment of a fee to the European Patent Office shall be extinguished after four years from the end of the calendar year in which the fee fell due.

(2) Rights against the Organisation for the refunding by the European Patent Office of fees or sums of money paid in excess of a fee shall be extinguished after four years from the end of the calendar year in which the right arose.

(3) The period laid down in paragraphs 1 and 2 shall be interrupted in the case covered by paragraph 1 by a request for payment of the fee and in the case covered by paragraph 2 by a reasoned claim in writing. On interruption it shall begin again immediately and shall end at the latest six years after the end of the year in which it originally began, unless, in the meantime, judicial proceedings to enforce the right have begun; in this case the period shall end at the earliest one year after the judgment enters into force.

Chapter II

Information to the public or official authorities

Article 127

Register of European Patents

The European Patent Office shall keep a register, to be known as the Register of European Patents, which shall contain those particulars the registration of which is provided for by this Convention. No entry shall be made in the Register prior to the publication of the European patent application. The Register shall be open to public inspection.

Article 128

Inspection of files

(1) The files relating to European patent applications, which have not yet been published, shall not be made available for inspection without the consent of the applicant.

(2) Any person who can prove that the applicant for a European patent has invoked the rights under the application against him may obtain inspection of the files prior to the publication of that application and without the consent of the applicant.

(3) Where a European divisional application or a new European patent application filed under Article 61, paragraph 1, is published, any person may obtain inspection of the files of the earlier application prior to the publication of that application and without the consent of the relevant applicant.

(4) Subsequent to the publication of the European patent application, the files relating to such application and the resulting European patent may be inspected on request, subject to the restrictions laid down in the Implementing Regulations.

(5) Even prior to the publication of the European patent application, the European Patent Office may communicate the following bibliographic data to third parties or publish them:

(a) the number of the European patent application;

(b) the date of filing of the European patent application and, where the priority of a previous application is claimed, the date, State and file number of the previous application;

(c) the name of the applicant;

(d) the title of the invention;

(e) the Contracting States designated.

Article 129

Periodical publications

The European Patent Office shall periodically publish:

(a) a European Patent Bulletin containing entries made in the Register of European Patents, as well as other particulars the publication of which is prescribed by this Convention;

(b) an Official Journal of the European Patent Office, containing notices and information of a general character issued by the President of the European Patent Office, as well as any other information relevant to this Convention or its implementation.

Article 130

Exchanges of information

(1) The European Patent Office and, subject to the application of the legislative or regulatory provisions referred to in Article 75, paragraph 2, the central industrial property office of any Contracting State shall, on request, communicate to each other any useful information regarding the filing of European or national patent applications and regarding any proceedings concerning such applications and the resulting patents.

(2) The provisions of paragraph 1 shall apply to the communication of information by virtue of working agreements between the European Patent Office and:

(a) the central industrial property office of any State which is not a party to this Convention;

(b) any intergovernmental organisation entrusted with the task of granting patents;

(c) any other organisation.

(3) The communications under paragraphs 1 and 2(a) and (b) shall not be subject to the restrictions laid down in Article 128. The Administrative Council may decide that communications under paragraph 2(c) shall not be subject to such restrictions, provided that the organisation concerned shall treat the information communicated as confidential until the European patent application has been published.

Article 131

Administrative and legal co-operation

(1) Unless otherwise provided in this Convention or in national laws, the European Patent Office and the courts or authorities of Contracting States shall on request give assistance to each other by communicating information or opening files for inspection. Where the European Patent Office lays files open to inspection by courts, Public Prosecutors' Offices or central industrial property offices, the inspection shall not be subject to the restrictions laid down in Article 128.

(2) Upon receipt of letters rogatory from the European Patent Office, the courts or other competent authorities of Contracting States shall undertake, on behalf of that Office and within the limits of their jurisdiction, any necessary enquiries or other legal measures.

Article 132

Exchange of publications

(1) The European Patent Office and the central industrial property offices of the Contracting States shall despatch to each other on request and for their own use one or more copies of their respective publications free of charge.

(2) The European Patent Office may conclude agreements relating to the exchange or supply of publications.

Chapter III

Representation

Article 133

General principles of representation

(1) Subject to the provisions of paragraph 2, no person shall be compelled to be represented by a professional representative in proceedings established by this Convention.

(2) Natural or legal persons not having either a residence or their principal place of business within the territory of one of the Contracting States must be represented by a professional representative and act through him in all proceedings established by this Convention, other than in filing the European patent application; the Implementing Regulations may permit other exceptions.

(3) Natural or legal persons having their residence or principal place of business within the territory of one of the Contracting States may be represented in proceedings established by this Convention by an employee, who need not be a professional representative but who must be authorised in accordance with the Implementing Regulations. The Implementing Regulations may provide whether and under what conditions an employee of such a legal person may also represent other legal persons which have their principal place of business within the territory of one of the Contracting States and which have economic connections with the first legal person.

(4) The Implementing Regulations may prescribe special provisions concerning the common representation of parties acting in common.

Article 134

Professional representatives

(1) Professional representation of natural or legal persons in proceedings established by this Convention may only be undertaken by professional representatives whose names appear on a list maintained for this purpose by the European Patent Office.

(2) Any natural person who fulfils the following conditions may be entered on the list of professional representatives:

(a) he must be a national of one of the Contracting States;

(b) he must have his place of business or employment within the territory of one of the Contracting States;

(c) he must have passed the European qualifying examination.

(3) Entry shall be effected upon request, accompanied by certificates which must indicate that the conditions laid down in paragraph 2 are fulfilled.

(4) Persons whose names appear on the list of professional representatives shall be entitled to act in all proceedings established by this Convention.

(5) For the purpose of acting as a professional representative, any person whose name appears on the list referred to in paragraph 1 shall be entitled to establish a place of business in any Contracting State in which proceedings established by this Convention may be conducted, having regard to the Protocol on Centralisation annexed to this Convention. The authorities of such State may remove that entitlement in individual cases only in application of legal provisions adopted for the purpose of protecting public security and law and order. Before such action is taken, the President of the European Patent Office shall be consulted.

(6) The President of the European Patent Office may, in special circumstances, grant exemption from the requirement of paragraph 2(a).

(7) Professional representation in proceedings established by this Convention may also be undertaken, in the same way as by a professional representative, by any legal practitioner qualified in one of the Contracting States and having his place of business within such State, to the extent that he is entitled, within the said State, to act as a professional representative in patent matters. Paragraph 5 shall apply mutatis mutandis.

(8) The Administrative Council may adopt provisions governing:

(a) the qualifications and training required of a person for admission to the European qualifying examination and the conduct of such examination;

(b) the establishment or recognition of an institute constituted by the persons entitled to act as professional representatives by virtue of either the European qualifying examination or the provisions of Article 163, paragraph 7;

(c) any disciplinary power to be exercised by that institute or the European Patent Office on such persons.

Part VIII

IMPACT ON NATIONAL LAW

Chapter I

Conversion into a national patent application

Article 135

Request for the application of national procedure

(1) The central industrial property office of a designated Contracting State shall apply the procedure for the grant of a national patent only at the request of the applicant for or proprietor of a European patent, and in the following circumstances:

(a) when the European patent application is deemed to be withdrawn pursuant to Article 77, paragraph 5, or Article 162, paragraph 4;

(b) in such other cases as are provided for by the national law in which the European patent application is refused or withdrawn or deemed to be withdrawn, or the European patent is revoked under this Convention.

(2) The request for conversion shall be filed within three months after the European patent application has been withdrawn or after notification has been made that the application is deemed to be withdrawn, or after a decision has been notified refusing the application or revoking the European patent. The effect referred to in Article 66 shall lapse if the request is not filed in due time.

Article 136

Submission and transmission of the request

(1) A request for conversion shall be filed with the European Patent Office and shall specify the Contracting States in which application of the procedure for the grant of a national patent is desired. The request shall not be deemed to be filed until the conversion fee has been paid. The European Patent Office shall transmit the request to the central industrial property offices of the Contracting States specified therein, accompanied by a copy of the files relating to the European patent application or the European patent.

(2) However, if the applicant is notified that the European patent application has been deemed to be withdrawn pursuant to Article 77, paragraph 5, the request shall be filed with the central industrial property office with which the application has been filed. That office shall, subject to the provisions of national security, transmit the request, together with a copy of the European patent application, directly to the central industrial property offices of the Contracting States specified by the applicant in the request. The effect referred to in Article 66 shall lapse if such transmission is not made within twenty months after the date of filing or, if a priority has been claimed, after the date of priority.

Article 137

Formal requirements for conversion

(1) A European patent application transmitted in accordance with Article 136 shall not be subjected to formal requirements of national law which are different from or additional to those provided for in this Convention.

(2) Any central industrial property office to which the application is transmitted may require that the applicant shall, within not less than two months:

(a) pay the national application fee;

(b) file a translation in one of the official languages of the State in question of the original text of the European patent application and, where appropriate, of the text, as amended during proceedings before the European Patent Office, which the applicant wishes to submit to the national procedure.

Chapter II

Revocation and prior rights

Article 138

Grounds for revocation

(1) Subject to the provisions of Article 139, a European patent may only be revoked under the law of a Contracting State, with effect for its territory, on the following grounds:

(a) if the subject-matter of the European patent is not patentable within the terms of Articles 52 to 57;

(b) if the European patent does not disclose the invention in a manner sufficiently clear and complete for it to be carried out by a person skilled in the art;

(c) if the subject-matter of the European patent extends beyond the content of the application as filed or, if the patent was granted on a divisional application or on a new application filed in accordance with Article 61, beyond the content of the earlier application as filed;

(d) if the protection conferred by the European patent has been extended;

(e) if the proprietor of the European patent is not entitled under Article 60, paragraph 1.

(2) If the grounds for revocation only affect the European patent in part, revocation shall be pronounced in the form of a corresponding limitation of the said patent. If the national law so allows, the limitation may be effected in the form of an amendment to the claims, the description or the drawings.

Article 139

Rights of earlier date or the same date

(1) In any designated Contracting State a European patent application and a European patent shall have with regard to a national patent application and a national patent the same prior right effect as a national patent application and a national patent.

(2) A national patent application and a national patent in a Contracting State shall have with regard to a European patent in which that Contracting State is designated the same prior right effect as they have with regard to a national patent.

(3) Any Contracting State may prescribe whether and on what terms an invention disclosed in both a European patent application or patent and a national application or patent having the same date of filing or, where priority is claimed, the same date of priority, may be protected simultaneously by both applications or patents.

Chapter III

Miscellaneous effects

Article 140

National utility models and utility certificates

Article 66, Article 124, Articles 135 to 137 and Article 139 shall apply to utility models and utility certificates and to applications for utility models and utility certificates registered or deposited in the Contracting States whose laws make provision for such models or certificates.

Article 141

Renewal fees for European patents

(1) Renewal fees in respect of a European patent may only be imposed for the years which follow that referred to in Article 86, paragraph 4.

(2) Any renewal fees falling due within two months after the publication of the mention of the grant of the European patent shall be deemed to have been validly paid if they are paid within that period. Any additional fee provided for under national law shall not be charged.

Part IX

SPECIAL AGREEMENTS

Article 142

Unitary patents

(1) Any group of Contracting States, which has provided by a special agreement that a European patent granted for those States has a unitary character throughout their territories, may provide that a European patent may only be granted jointly in respect of all those States.

(2) Where any group of Contracting States has availed itself of the authorisation given in paragraph 1, the provisions of this Part shall apply.

Article 143

Special departments of the European Patent Office

(1) The group of Contracting States may give additional tasks to the European Patent Office.

(2) Special departments common to the Contracting States in the group may be set up within the European Patent Office in order to carry out the additional tasks. The President of the European Patent Office shall direct such special departments; Article 10, paragraphs 2 and 3, shall apply mutatis mutandis.

Article 144

Representation before special departments

The group of Contracting States may lay down special provisions to govern representation of parties before the departments referred to in Article 143, paragraph 2.

Article 145

Select committee of the Administrative Council

(1) The group of Contracting States may set up a select committee of the Administrative Council for the purpose of supervising the activities of the special departments set up under Article 143, paragraph 2; the European Patent Office shall place at its disposal such staff, premises and equipment as may be necessary for the performance of its duties. The President of the European Patent Office shall be responsible for the activities of the special departments to the select committee of the Administrative Council.

(2) The composition, powers and functions of the select committee shall be determined by the group of Contracting States.

Article 146

Cover for expenditure for carrying out special tasks

Where additional tasks have been given to the European Patent Office under Article 143, the group of Contracting States shall bear the expenses incurred by the Organisation in carrying out these tasks. Where special departments have been set up in the European Patent Office to carry out these additional tasks, the group shall bear the expenditure on staff, premises and equipment chargeable in respect of these departments. Article 39, paragraphs 3 and 4, Article 41 and Article 47 shall apply mutatis mutandis.

Article 147

Payments in respect of renewal fees for unitary patents

If the group of Contracting States has fixed a common scale of renewal fees in respect of European patents the proportion referred to in Article 39, paragraph 1, shall be calculated on the basis of the common scale; the minimum amount referred to in Article 39, paragraph 1, shall apply to the unitary patent. Article 39, paragraphs 3 and 4, shall apply mutatis mutandis.

Article 148

The European patent application as an object of property

(1) Article 74 shall apply unless the group of Contracting States has specified otherwise.

(2) The group of Contracting States may provide that a European patent application for which these Contracting States are designated may only be transferred, mortgaged or subjected to any legal means of execution in respect of all the Contracting States of the group and in accordance with the provisions of the special agreement.

Article 149

Joint designation

(1) The group of Contracting States may provide that these States may only be designated jointly, and that the designation of one or some only of such States shall be deemed to constitute the designation of all the States of the group.

(2) Where the European Patent Office acts as a designated Office under Article 153, paragraph 1, paragraph 1 shall apply if the applicant has indicated in the international application that he wishes to obtain a European patent for one or more of the designated States of the group. The same shall apply if the applicant designates in the international application one of the Contracting States in the group, whose national law provides that the designation of that State shall have the effect of the application being for a European patent.

Part X

INTERNATIONAL APPLICATION PURSUANT TO THE PATENT COOPERATION TREATY

Article 150

Application of the Patent Cooperation Treaty

(1) The Patent Cooperation Treaty of 19 June 1970, hereinafter referred to as the Cooperation Treaty, shall be applied in accordance with the provisions of this Part.

(2) International applications filed under the Cooperation Treaty may be the subject of proceedings before the European Patent Office. In such proceedings, the provisions of that Treaty shall be applied, supplemented by the provisions of this Convention. In case of conflict, the provisions of the Cooperation Treaty shall prevail. In particular, for an international application the time limit within which a request for examination must be filed under Article 94, paragraph 2, of this Convention shall not expire before the time prescribed by Article 22 or Article 39 of the Cooperation Treaty as the case maybe.

(3) An international application, for which the European Patent Office acts as designated Office or elected Office, shall be deemed to be a European patent application.

(4) Where reference is made in this Convention to the Cooperation Treaty, such reference shall include the Regulations under that Treaty.

Article 151

The European Patent Office as a receiving Office

(1) The European Patent Office may act as a receiving Office within the meaning of Article 2(xv) of the Cooperation Treaty if the applicant is a resident or national of a Contracting State to this Convention in respect of which the Cooperation Treaty has entered into force.

(2) The European Patent Office may also act as a receiving Office if the applicant is a resident or national of a State which is not a Contracting State to this Convention, but which is a Contracting State to the Cooperation Treaty and which has concluded an agreement with the Organisation whereby the European Patent Office acts as a receiving Office, in accordance with the provisions of the Cooperation Treaty, in place of the national office of that State.

(3) Subject to the prior approval of the Administrative Council, the European Patent Office may also act as a receiving Office for any other applicant, in accordance with an agreement concluded between the Organisation and the International Bureau of the World Intellectual Property Organization.

Article 152

Filing and transmittal of the international application

(1) If the applicant chooses the European Patent Office as a receiving Office for his international application, he shall file it directly with the European Patent Office. Article 75, paragraph 2, shall nevertheless apply mutatis mutandis.

(2) In the event of an international application being filed with the European Patent Office through the intermediary of the competent central industrial property office, the Contracting State concerned shall take all necessary measures to ensure that the application is transmitted to the European Patent Office in time for the latter to be able to comply in due time with the conditions for transmittal under the Cooperation Treaty.

(3) Each international application shall be subject to the payment of the transmittal fee, which shall be payable within one month after receipt of the application.

Article 153

The European Patent Office as a designated Office

(1) The European Patent Office shall act as a designated Office within the meaning of Article 2(xiii) of the Cooperation Treaty for those Contracting States to this Convention in respect of which the Cooperation Treaty has entered into force and which are designated in the international application if the applicant informs the receiving Office in the international application that he wishes to obtain a European patent for these States. The same shall apply if, in the international application, the applicant designates a Contracting State of which the national law provides that designation of that State shall have the effect of the application being for a European patent.

(2) When the European Patent Office acts as a designated Office, the Examining Division shall be competent to take decisions which are required under Article 25, paragraph 2(a), of the Cooperation Treaty.

Article 154

The European Patent Office as an International Searching Authority

(1) The European Patent Office shall act as an International Searching Authority within the meaning of Chapter I of the Cooperation Treaty for applicants who are residents or nationals of a Contracting State in respect of which the Cooperation Treaty has entered into force, subject to the conclusion of an agreement between the Organisation and the International Bureau of the World Intellectual Property Organization.

(2) Subject to the prior approval of the Administrative Council, the European Patent Office shall also act as an International Searching Authority for any other applicant, in accordance with an agreement concluded between the Organisation and the International Bureau of the World Intellectual Property Organization.

(3) The Boards of Appeal shall be responsible for deciding on a protest made by an applicant against an additional fee charged by the European Patent Office under the provisions of Article 17, paragraph 3(a), of the Cooperation Treaty.

Article 155

The European Patent Office as an International Preliminary Examining Authority

(1) The European Patent Office shall act as an International Preliminary Examining Authority within the meaning of Chapter II of the Cooperation Treaty for applicants who are residents or nationals of a Contracting State bound by that Chapter, subject to the conclusion of an agreement between the Organisation and the International Bureau of the World Intellectual Property Organization.

(2) Subject to the prior approval of the Administrative Council, the European Patent Office shall also act as an International Preliminary Examining Authority for any other applicant, in accordance with an agreement concluded between the Organisation and the International Bureau of the World Intellectual Property Organization.

(3) The Boards of Appeal shall be responsible for deciding on a protest made by an applicant against an additional fee charged by the European Patent Office under the provisions of Article 34, paragraph 3(a), of the Cooperation Treaty.

Article 156

The European Patent Office as an elected Office

The European Patent Office shall act as an elected Office within the meaning of Article 2(xiv) of the Co-operation Treaty if the applicant has elected any of the designated States referred to in Article 153, paragraph 1, or Article 149, paragraph 2, for which Chapter II of that Treaty has become binding. Subject to the prior approval of the Administrative Council, the same shall apply where the applicant is a resident or national of a State which is not a party to that Treaty or which is not bound by Chapter II of that Treaty, provided that he is one of the persons whom the Assembly of the International Patent Cooperation Union has decided to allow, pursuant to Article 31, paragraph 2(b), of the Cooperation Treaty, to make a demand for international preliminary examination.

Article 157

International search report

(1) Without prejudice to the provisions of paragraphs 2 to 4, the international search report under Article 18 of the Cooperation Treaty or any declaration under Article 17, paragraph 2(a), of that Treaty and their publication under Article 21 of that Treaty shall take the place of the European search report and the mention of its publication in the European Patent Bulletin.

(2) Subject to the decisions of the Administrative Council referred to in paragraph 3:

(a) a supplementary European search report shall be drawn up in respect of all international applications;

(b) the applicant shall pay the search fee, which shall be paid at the same time as the national fee provided for in Article 22, paragraph 1, or Article 39, paragraph 1, of the Cooperation Treaty. If the search fee is not paid in due time the application shall be deemed to be withdrawn.

(3) The Administrative Council may decide under what conditions and to what extent:

(a) the supplementary European search report is to be dispensed with;

(b) the search fee is to be reduced.

(4) The Administrative Council may at any time rescind the decisions taken pursuant to paragraph 3.

Article 158

Publication of the international application and its supply to the European Patent Office

(1) Publication under Article 21 of the Cooperation Treaty of an international application for which the European Patent Office is a designated Office shall, subject to paragraph 3, take the place of the publication of a European patent application and shall be mentioned in the European Patent Bulletin. Such an application shall not however be considered as comprised in the state of the art in accordance with Article 54, paragraph 3, if the conditions laid down in paragraph 2 are not fulfilled.

(2) The international application shall be supplied to the European Patent Office in one of its official languages. The applicant shall pay to the European Patent Office the national fee provided for in Article 22, paragraph 1, or Article 39, paragraph 1, of the Cooperation Treaty.

(3) If the international application is published in a language other than one of the official languages of the European Patent Office, that Office shall publish the international application, supplied as specified in paragraph 2. Subject to the provisions of Article 67, paragraph 3, the provisional protection in accordance with Article 67, paragraphs 1 and 2, shall be effective from the date of that publication.

Part XI

TRANSITIONAL PROVISIONS

Article 159

Administrative Council during a transitional period

(1) The States referred to in Article 169, paragraph 1, shall appoint their representatives to the Administrative Council; on the invitation of the Government of the Federal Republic of Germany, the Administrative Council shall meet no later than two months after the entry into force of this Convention, particularly for the purpose of appointing the President of the European Patent Office.

(2) The duration of the term of office of the first Chairman of the Administrative Council appointed after the entry into force of this Convention shall be four years.

(3) The term of office of two of the elected members of the first Board of the Administrative Council set up after the entry into force of this Convention shall be five and four years respectively.

Article 160

Appointment of employees during a transitional period

(1) Until such time as the Service Regulations for permanent employees and the conditions of employment of other employees of the European Patent Office have been adopted, the Administrative Council and the President of the European Patent Office, each within their respective powers, shall recruit the necessary employees and shall conclude short-term contracts to that effect. The Administrative Council may lay down general principles in respect of recruitment.

(2) During a transitional period, the expiry of which shall be determined by the Administrative Council, the Administrative Council, after consulting the President of the European Patent Office, may appoint as members of the Enlarged Board of Appeal or of the Boards of Appeal technically or legally qualified members of national courts and authorities of Contracting States who may continue their activities in their national courts or authorities. They may be appointed for a term of less than five years, though this shall not be less than one year, and may be reappointed.

Article 161

First accounting period

(1) The first accounting period of the Organisation shall extend from the date of entry into force of this Convention to 31 December of the same year. If that date falls within the second half of the year, the accounting period shall extend until 31 December of the following year.

(2) The budget for the first accounting period shall be drawn up as soon as possible after the entry into force of this Convention. Until contributions provided for in Article 40 due in accordance with the first budget are received by the Organisation, the Contracting States shall, upon the request of and within the limit of the amount fixed by the Administrative Council, make advances which shall be deducted from their contributions in respect of that budget. The advances shall be determined in accordance with the scale referred to in Article 40. Article 39, paragraphs 3 and 4, shall apply mutatis mutandis to the advances.

Article 162

Progressive expansion of the field of activity of the European Patent Office

(1) European patent applications may be filed with the European Patent Office from the date fixed by the Administrative Council on the recommendation of the President of the European Patent Office.

(2) The Administrative Council may, on the recommendation of the President of the European Patent Office, decide that, as from the date referred to in paragraph 1, the processing of European patent applications may be restricted. Such restriction may be in respect of certain areas of technology. However, examination shall in any event be made as to whether European patent applications can be accorded a date of filing.

(3) If a decision has been taken under paragraph 2, the Administrative Council may not subsequently further restrict the processing of European patent applications.

(4) Where, as a result of the procedure being restricted under paragraph 2, a European patent application cannot be further processed, the European Patent Office shall communicate this to the applicant and shall point out that he may make a request for conversion. The European patent application shall be deemed to be withdrawn on receipt of such communication.

Article 163

Professional representatives during a transitional period

(1) During a transitional period, the expiry of which shall be determined by the Administrative Council, notwithstanding the provisions of Article 134, paragraph 2, any natural person who fulfils the following conditions may be entered on the list of professional representatives:

(a) he must be a national of a Contracting State;

(b) he must have his place of business or employment within the territory of one of the Contracting States;

(c) he must be entitled to represent natural or legal persons in patent matters before the central industrial property office of the Contracting State in which he has his place of business or employment.

(2) Entry shall be effected upon request, accompanied by a certificate, furnished by the central industrial property office, which must indicate that the conditions laid down in paragraph 1 are fulfilled.

(3) When, in any Contracting State, the entitlement referred to in paragraph 1(c) is not conditional upon the requirement of special professional qualifications, persons applying to be entered on the list who act in patent matters before the central industrial property office of the said State must have habitually so acted for at least five years. However, persons whose professional qualification to represent natural or legal persons in patent matters before the central industrial property office of one of the Contracting States is officially recognised in accordance with the regulations laid down by such State shall not be subject to the condition of having exercised the profession. The certificate furnished by the central industrial property office must indicate that the applicant satisfies one of the conditions referred to in the present paragraph.

(4) The President of the European Patent Office may grant exemption from:

(a) the requirement of paragraph 3, first sentence, if the applicant furnishes proof that he has acquired the requisite qualification in another way;

(b) the requirement of paragraph 1(a) in special circumstances.

(5) The President of the European Patent Office shall grant exemption from the requirement of paragraph 1(a) if on 5 October 1973 the applicant fulfilled the requirements of paragraph 1(b) and (c).

(6) Persons having their places of business or employment in a State which acceded to this Convention less than one year before the expiry of the transitional period referred to in paragraph 1 or after the expiry of the transitional period may, under the conditions laid down in paragraphs 1 to 5, during a period of one year calculated from the date of entry into force of the accession of that State, be entered on the list of professional representatives.

(7) After the expiry of the transitional period, any person whose name was entered on the list of professional representatives during that period shall, without prejudice to any disciplinary measures taken under Article 134, paragraph 8(c), remain thereon or, on request, be restored thereto, provided that he then fulfils the requirement of paragraph 1(b).

Part XII

FINAL PROVISIONS

Article 164

Implementing Regulations and Protocols

(1) The Implementing Regulations, the Protocol on Recognition, the Protocol on Privileges and Immunities, the Protocol on Centralisation and the Protocol on the Interpretation of Article 69 shall be integral parts of this Convention.

(2) In the case of conflict between the provisions of this Convention and those of the Implementing Regulations, the provisions of this Convention shall prevail.

Article 165

Signature — Ratification

(1) This Convention shall be open for signature until 5April 1974 by the States which took part in the Inter-Governmental Conference for the setting up of a European System for the Grant of Patents or were informed of the holding of that conference and offered the option of taking part therein.

(2) This Convention shall be subject to ratification; instruments of ratification shall be deposited with the Government of the Federal Republic of Germany.

Article 166

Accession

(1) This Convention shall be open to accession by:

(a) the States referred to in Article 165, paragraph 1;

(b) any other European State at the invitation of the Administrative Council.

(2) Any State which has been a party to the Convention and has ceased so to be as a result of the application of Article 172, paragraph 4, may again become a party to the Convention by acceding to it.

(3) Instruments of accession shall be deposited with the Government of the Federal Republic of Germany.

Article 167

Reservations

(1) Each Contracting State may, at the time of signature or when depositing its instrument of ratification or accession, make only the reservations specified in paragraph 2.

(2) Each Contracting State may reserve the right to provide that:

(a) European patents, in so far as they confer protection on chemical, pharmaceutical or food products, as such, shall, in accordance with the provisions applicable to national patents, be ineffective or revocable; this reservation shall not affect protection conferred by the patent in so far as it involves a process of manufacture or use of a chemical product or a process of manufacture of a pharmaceutical or food product;

(b) European patents, in so far as they confer protection on agricultural or horticultural processes other than those to which Article 53, sub-paragraph (b), applies, shall, in accordance with the provisions applicable to national patents, be ineffective or revocable;

(c) European patents shall have a term shorter than twenty years, in accordance with the provisions applicable to national patents;

(d) it shall not be bound by the Protocol on Recognition.

(3) Any reservation made by a Contracting State shall have effect for a period of not more than ten years from the entry into force of this Convention. However, where a Contracting State has made any of the reservations referred to in paragraph 2(a) and (b), the Administrative Council may, in respect of such State, extend the period by not more than five years for all or part of any reservation made, if that State submits, at the latest one year before the end of the ten-year period, a reasoned request which satisfies the Administrative Council that the State is not in a position to dispense with that reservation by the expiry of the ten-year period.

(4) Any Contracting State that has made a reservation shall withdraw this reservation as soon as circumstances permit. Such withdrawal shall be made by notification addressed to the Government of the Federal Republic of Germany and shall take effect one month from the date of receipt of such notification.

(5) Any reservation made in accordance with paragraph 2(a), (b) or (c) shall apply to European patents granted on European patent applications filed during the period in which the reservation has effect. The effect of the reservation shall continue for the term of the patent.

(6) Without prejudice to paragraphs 4 and 5, any reservation shall cease to have effect on expiry of the period referred to in paragraph 3, first sentence, or, if the period is extended, on expiry of the extended period.

Article 168

Territorial field of application

(1) Any Contracting State may declare in its instrument of ratification or accession, or may inform the Government of the Federal Republic of Germany by written notification any time thereafter, that this Convention shall be applicable to one or more of the territories for the external relations of which it is responsible. European patents granted for that Contracting State shall also have effect in the territories for which such a declaration has taken effect.

(2) If the declaration referred to in paragraph 1 is contained in the instrument of ratification or accession, it shall take effect on the same date as the ratification or accession; if the declaration is made in a notification after the deposit of the instrument of ratification or accession, such notification shall take effect six months after the date of its receipt by the Government of the Federal Republic of Germany.

(3) Any Contracting State may at any time declare that the Convention shall cease to apply to some or to all of the territories in respect of which it has given a notification pursuant to paragraph 1. Such declaration shall take effect one year after the date on which the Government of the Federal Republic of Germany received notification thereof.

Article 169

Entry into force

(1) This Convention shall enter into force three months after the deposit of the last instrument of ratification or accession by six States on whose territory the total number of patent applications filed in 1970 amounted to at least 180 000 for all the said States.

(2) Any ratification or accession after the entry into force of this Convention shall take effect on the first day of the third month after the deposit of the instrument of ratification or accession.

Article 170

Initial contribution

(1) Any State which ratifies or accedes to this Convention after its entry into force shall pay to the Organisation an initial contribution, which shall not be refunded.

(2) The initial contribution shall be 5% of an amount calculated by applying the percentage obtained for the State in question, on the date on which ratification or accession takes effect, in accordance with the scale provided for in Article 40, paragraphs 3 and 4, to the sum of the special financial contributions due from the other Contracting States in respect of the accounting periods preceding the date referred to above.

(3) In the event that special financial contributions were not required in respect of the accounting period immediately preceding the date referred to in paragraph 2, the scale of contributions referred to in that paragraph shall be the scale that would have been applicable to the State concerned in respect of the last year for which financial contributions were required.

Article 171

Duration of the Convention

The present Convention shall be of unlimited duration.

Article 172

Revision

(1) This Convention may be revised by a Conference of the Contracting States.

(2) The Conference shall be prepared and convened by the Administrative Council. The Conference shall not be deemed to be validly constituted unless at least three-quarters of the Contracting States are represented at it. In order to adopt the revised text there must be a majority of three-quarters of the Contracting States represented and voting at the Conference. Abstentions shall not be considered as votes.

(3) The revised text shall enter into force when it has been ratified or acceded to by the number of Contracting States specified by the Conference, and at the time specified by that Conference.

(4) Such States as have not ratified or acceded to the revised text of the Convention at the time of its entry into force shall cease to be parties to this Convention as from that time.

Article 173

Disputes between Contracting States

(1) Any dispute between Contracting States concerning the interpretation or application of the present Convention which is not settled by negotiation shall be submitted, at the request of one of the States concerned, to the Administrative Council, which shall endeavour to bring about agreement between the States concerned.

(2) If such agreement is not reached within six months from the date when the Administrative Council was seized of the dispute, any one of the States concerned may submit the dispute to the International Court of Justice for a binding decision.

Article 174

Denunciation

Any Contracting State may at any time denounce this Convention. Notification of denunciation shall be given to the Government of the Federal Republic of Germany. Denunciation shall take effect one year after the date of receipt of such notification.

Article 175

Preservation of acquired rights

(1) In the event of a State ceasing to be party to this Convention in accordance with Article 172, paragraph 4, or Article 174, rights already acquired pursuant to this Convention shall not be impaired.

(2) A European patent application which is pending when a designated State ceases to be party to the Convention shall be processed by the European Patent Office, in so far as that State is concerned, as if the Convention in force thereafter were applicable to that State.

(3) The provisions of paragraph 2 shall apply to European patents in respect of which, on the date mentioned in that paragraph, an opposition is pending or the opposition period has not expired.

(4) Nothing in this Article shall affect the right of any State that has ceased to be a party to this Convention to treat any European patent in accordance with the text to which it was a party.

Article 176

Financial rights and obligations of a former Contracting State

(1) Any State which has ceased to be a party to this Convention in accordance with Article 172, paragraph 4, or Article 174, shall have the special financial contributions which it has paid pursuant to Article 40, paragraph 2, refunded to it by the Organisation only at the time and under the conditions whereby the Organisation refunds special financial contributions paid by other States during the same accounting period.

(2) The State referred to in paragraph 1 shall, even after ceasing to be a party to this Convention, continue to pay the proportion pursuant to Article 39 of renewal fees in respect of European patents remaining in force in that State, at the rate current on the date on which it ceased to be a party.

Article 177

Languages of the Convention

(1) This Convention, drawn up in a single original, in the English, French and German languages, shall be deposited in the archives of the Government of the Federal Republic of Germany, the three texts being equally authentic.

(2) The texts of this Convention drawn up in official languages of Contracting States other than those referred to in paragraph 1 shall, if they have been approved by the Administrative Council, be considered as official texts. In the event of conflict on the interpretation of the various texts, the texts referred to in paragraph 1 shall be authentic.

Article 178

Transmission and notifications

(1) The Government of the Federal Republic of Germany shall draw up certified true copies of this Convention and shall transmit them to the Governments of all signatory or acceding States.

(2) The Government of the Federal Republic of Germany shall notify to the Governments of the States referred to in paragraph 1:

(a) any signature;

(b) the deposit of any instrument of ratification or accession;

(c) any reservation or withdrawal of reservation pursuant to the provisions of Article 167;

(d) any declaration or notification received pursuant to the provisions of Article 168;

(e) the date of entry into force of this Convention;

(f) any denunciation received pursuant to the provisions of Article 174 and the date on which such denunciation comes into force.

(3) The Government of the Federal Republic of Germany shall register this Convention with the Secretariat of the United Nations.

IN WITNESS WHEREOF, the Plenipotentiaries authorised thereto, having presented their Full Powers, found to be in good and due form, have signed this Convention.

Done at Munich this fifth day of October one thousand nine hundred and seventy-three.

 

Protocol on the Interpretation of Article 69 of the Convention

(adopted at the Munich Diplomatic Conference for the setting up of a European System for the Grant of Patents on 5October 1973)

Article 69 should not be interpreted in the sense that the extent of the protection conferred by a European patent is to be understood as that defined by the strict, literal meaning of the wording used in the claims, the description and drawings being employed only for the purpose of resolving an ambiguity found in the claims. Neither should it be interpreted in the sense that the claims serve only as a guideline and that the actual protection conferred may extend to what, from a consideration of the description and drawings by a person skilled in the art, the patentee has contemplated. On the contrary, it is to be interpreted as defining a position between these extremes which combines a fair protection for the patentee with a reasonable degree of certainty for third parties.

 

PROTOCOL ON JURISDICTION AND THE RECOGNITION OF DECISIONS IN RESPECT OF THE RIGHT TO THE GRANT OF A EUROPEAN PATENT

(PROTOCOL ON RECOGNITION)

of 5 October 1973

Section I

Jurisdiction

Article 1

(1) The courts of the Contracting States shall, in accordance with Articles 2 to 6, have jurisdiction to decide claims, against the applicant, to the right to the grant of a European patent in respect of one or more of the Contracting States designated in the European patent application.

(2) For the purposes of this Protocol, the term "courts" shall include authorities which, under the national law of a Contracting State, have jurisdiction to decide the claims referred to in paragraph 1. Any Contracting State shall notify the European Patent Office of the identity of any authority on which such a jurisdiction is conferred, and the European Patent Office shall inform the other Contracting States accordingly.

(3) For the purposes of this Protocol, the term "Contracting State" refers to a Contracting State which has not excluded application of this Protocol pursuant to Article 167 of the Convention.

Article 2

Subject to Articles 4 and 5, if an applicant for a European patent has his residence or principal place of business within one of the Contracting States, proceedings shall be brought against him in the courts of that Contracting State.

Article 3

Subject to Articles 4 and 5, if an applicant for a European patent has his residence or principal place of business outside the Contracting States, and if the party claiming the right to the grant of the European patent has his residence or principal place of business within one of the Contracting States, the courts of the latter State shall have exclusive jurisdiction.

Article 4

Subject to Article 5, if the subject-matter of a European patent application is the invention of an employee, the courts of the Contracting State, if any, whose law determines the right to the European patent pursuant to Article 60, paragraph 1, second sentence, of the Convention, shall have exclusive jurisdiction over proceedings between the employee and the employer.

Article 5

(1) If the parties to a dispute concerning the right to the grant of a European patent have concluded an agreement, either in writing or verbally with written confirmation, to the effect that a court or the courts of a particular Contracting State shall decide on such a dispute, the court or courts of that State shall have exclusive jurisdiction.

(2) However, if the parties are an employee and his employer, paragraph 1 shall only apply in so far as the national law governing the contract of employment allows the agreement in question.

Article 6

In cases where neither Articles 2 to 4 nor Article 5, paragraph 1, apply, the courts of the Federal Republic of Germany shall have exclusive jurisdiction.

Article 7

The courts of Contracting States before which claims referred to in Article 1 are brought shall of their own motion decide whether or not they have jurisdiction pursuant to Articles 2 to 6.

Article 8

(1) In the event of proceedings based on the same claim and between the same parties being brought before courts of different Contracting States, the court to which a later application is made shall of its own motion decline jurisdiction in favour of the court to which an earlier application was made.

(2) In the event of the jurisdiction of the court to which an earlier application is made being challenged, the court to which a later application is made shall stay the proceedings until the other court takes a final decision.

Section II

Recognition

Article 9

(1) Subject to the provisions of Article 11, paragraph 2, final decisions given in any Contracting State on the right to the grant of a European patent in respect of one or more of the Contracting States designated in the European patent application shall be recognised without requiring a special procedure in the other Contracting States.

(2) The jurisdiction of the court whose decision is to be recognised and the validity of such decision may not be reviewed.

Article 10

Article 9, paragraph 1, shall not be applicable where:

(a) an applicant for a European patent who has not contested a claim proves that the document initiating the proceedings was not notified to him regularly and sufficiently early for him to defend himself; or

(b) an applicant proves that the decision is incompatible with another decision given in a Contracting State in proceedings between the same parties which were started before those in which the decision to be recognised was given.

Article 11

(1) In relations between any Contracting States the provisions of this Protocol shall prevail over any conflicting provisions of other agreements on jurisdiction or the recognition of judgments.

(2) This Protocol shall not affect the implementation of any agreement between a Contracting State and a State which is not bound by the Protocol.

 

PROTOCOL ON PRIVILEGES AND IMMUNITIES OF THE EUROPEAN PATENT ORGANISATION

(PROTOCOL ON PRIVILEGES AND IMMUNITIES)

of 5 October 1973

Article 1

(1) The premises of the Organisation shall be inviolable.

(2) The authorities of the States in which the Organisation has its premises shall not enter those premises, except with the consent of the President of the European Patent Office. Such consent shall be assumed in case of fire or other disaster requiring prompt protective action.

(3) Service of process at the premises of the Organisation and of any other procedural instruments relating to a cause of action against the Organisation shall not constitute breach of inviolability.

Article 2

The archives of the Organisation and any documents belonging to or held by it shall be inviolable.

Article 3

(1) Within the scope of its official activities the Organisation shall have immunity from jurisdiction and execution, except

(a) to the extent that the Organisation shall have expressly waived such immunity in a particular case;

(b) in the case of a civil action brought by a third party for damage resulting from an accident caused by a motor vehicle belonging to, or operated on behalf of, the Organisation, or in respect of a motor traffic offence involving such a vehicle;

(c) in respect of the enforcement of an arbitration award made under Article 23.

(2) The property and assets of the Organisation, wherever situated, shall be immune from any form of requisition, confiscation, expropriation and sequestration.

(3) The property and assets of the Organisation shall also be immune from any form of administrative or provisional judicial constraint, except in so far as may be temporarily necessary in connection with the prevention of, and investigation into, accidents involving motor vehicles belonging to or operated on behalf of the Organisation.

(4) The official activities of the Organisation shall, for the purposes of this Protocol, be such as are strictly necessary for its administrative and technical operation, as set out in the Convention.

Article 4

(1) Within the scope of its official activities the Organisation and its property and income shall be exempt from all direct taxes.

(2) Where substantial purchases for the exercise of its official activities, and in the price of which taxes or duties are included, are made by the Organisation, appropriate measures shall, whenever possible, be taken by the Contracting States to remit or reimburse to the Organisation the amount of such taxes or duties.

(3) No exemption shall be accorded in respect of duties and taxes which are no more than charges for public utility services.

Article 5

Goods imported or exported by the Organisation for the exercise of its official activities shall be exempt from duties and charges on import or export other than fees or taxes representing services rendered, and from all prohibitions and restrictions on import or export.

Article 6

No exemption shall be granted under Articles 4 and 5 in respect of goods purchased or imported for the personal benefit of the employees of the European Patent Office.

Article 7

(1) Goods belonging to the Organisation which have been acquired or imported under Article 4 or Article 5 shall not be sold or given away except in accordance with conditions laid down by the Contracting States which have granted the exemptions.

(2) The transfer of goods and provision of services between the various buildings of the Organisation shall be exempt from charges or restrictions of any kind; where appropriate, the Contracting States shall take all the necessary measures to remit or reimburse the amount of such charges or to lift such restrictions.

Article 8

The transmission of publications and other information material by or to the Organisation shall not be restricted in any way.

Article 9

The Contracting States shall accord the Organisation the currency exemptions which are necessary for the exercise of its official activities.

Article 10

(1) With regard to its official communications and the transfer of all its documents, the Organisation shall in each Contracting State enjoy the most favourable treatment accorded by that State to any other international organisation.

(2) No censorship shall be applied to official communications of the Organisation by whatever means of communication.

Article 11

The Contracting States shall take all appropriate measures to facilitate the entry, stay and departure of the employees of the European Patent Office.

Article 12

(1) Representatives of Contracting States, alternate Representatives and their advisers or experts, if any, shall enjoy, while attending meetings of the Administrative Council and of any body established by it, and in the course of their journeys to and from the place of meeting, the following privileges and immunities:

(a) immunity from arrest or detention and from seizure of their personal luggage, except when found committing, attempting to commit, or just having committed an offence;

(b) immunity from jurisdiction, even after the termination of their mission, in respect of acts, including words written and spoken, done by them in the exercise of their functions; this immunity shall not apply, however, in the case of a motor traffic offence committed by one of the persons referred to above, nor in the case of damage caused by a motor vehicle belonging to or driven by such a person;

(c) inviolability for all their official papers and documents;

(d) the right to use codes and to receive documents or correspondence by special courier or sealed bag;

(e) exemption for themselves and their spouses from all measures restricting entry and from aliens' registration formalities;

(f) the same facilities in the matter of currency and exchange control as are accorded to the representatives of foreign Governments on temporary official missions.

(2) Privileges and immunities are accorded to the persons referred to in paragraph 1, not for their personal advantage but in order to ensure complete independence in the exercise of their functions in connection with the Organisation. Consequently, a Contracting State has the duty to waive the immunity in all cases where, in the opinion of that State, such immunity would impede the course of justice and where it can be waived without prejudicing the purposes for which it was accorded.

Article 13

(1) Subject to the provisions of Article 6, the President of the European Patent Office shall enjoy the privileges and immunities accorded to diplomatic agents under the Vienna Convention on Diplomatic Relations of 18 April 1961.

(2) However, immunity from jurisdiction shall not apply in the case of a motor traffic offence committed by the President of the European Patent Office or damage caused by a motor vehicle belonging to or driven by him.

Article 14

The employees of the European Patent Office:

(a) shall, even after their service has terminated, have immunity from jurisdiction in respect of acts, including words written and spoken, done in the exercise of their functions; this immunity shall not apply, however, in the case of a motor traffic offence committed by an employee of the European Patent Office, nor in the case of damage caused by a motor vehicle belonging to or driven by an employee;

(b) shall be exempt from all obligations in respect of military service;

(c) shall enjoy inviolability for all their official papers and documents;

(d) shall enjoy the same facilities as regards exemption from all measures restricting immigration and governing aliens' registration as are normally accorded to staff members of international organisations, as shall members of their families forming part of their household;

(e) shall enjoy the same privileges in respect of exchange regulations as are normally accorded to the staff members of international organisations;

(f) shall enjoy the same facilities as to repatriation as diplomatic agents in time of international crises, as shall the members of their families forming part of their household;

(g) shall have the right to import duty-free their furniture and personal effects at the time of first taking up their post in the State concerned and the right on the termination of their functions in that State to export free of duty their furniture and personal effects, subject to the conditions considered necessary by the Government of the State in whose territory the right is exercised and with the exception of property acquired in that State which is subject to an export prohibition therein.

Article 15

Experts performing functions on behalf of, or carrying out missions for, the Organisation shall enjoy the following privileges and immunities, to the extent that they are necessary for the carrying out of their functions, including during journeys made in carrying out their functions and in the course of such missions:

(a) immunity from jurisdiction in respect of acts done by them in the exercise of their functions, including words written or spoken, except in the case of a motor traffic offence committed by an expert or in the case of damage caused by a motor vehicle belonging to or driven by him; experts shall continue to enjoy this immunity after they have ceased to be employed by the Organisation;

(b) inviolability for all their official papers and documents;

(c) the exchange facilities necessary for the transfer of their remuneration.

Article 16

(1) The persons referred to in Articles 13 and 14 shall be subject to a tax for the benefit of the Organisation on salaries and emoluments paid by the Organisation, subject to the conditions and rules laid down by the Administrative Council within a period of one year from the date of the entry into force of the Convention. From the date on which this tax is applied, such salaries and emoluments shall be exempt from national income tax. The Contracting States may, however, take into account the salaries and emoluments thus exempt when assessing the amount of tax to be applied to income from other sources.

(2) Paragraph 1 shall not apply to pensions and annuities paid by the Organisation to the former employees of the European Patent Office.

Article 17

The Administrative Council shall decide the categories of employees to whom the provisions of Article 14, in whole or in part, and Article 16 shall apply and the categories of experts to whom the provisions of Article 15 shall apply. The names, titles and addresses of the employees and experts included in such categories shall be communicated from time to time to the Contracting States.

Article 18

In the event of the Organisation establishing its own social security scheme, the Organisation and the employees of the European Patent Office shall be exempt from all compulsory contributions to national social security schemes, subject to the agreements made with the Contracting States in accordance with the provisions of Article 25.

Article 19

(1) The privileges and immunities provided for in this Protocol are not designed to give to employees of the European Patent Office or experts performing functions for or on behalf of the Organisation personal advantage. They are provided solely to ensure, in all circumstances, the unimpeded functioning of the Organisation and the complete independence of the persons to whom they are accorded.

(2) The President of the European Patent Office has the duty to waive immunity where he considers that such immunity prevents the normal course of justice and that it is possible to dispense with such immunity without prejudicing the interests of the Organisation. The Administrative Council may waive immunity of the President for the same reasons.

Article 20

(1) The Organisation shall co-operate at all times with the competent authorities of the Contracting States in order to facilitate the proper administration of justice, to ensure the observance of police regulations and regulations concerning public health, labour inspection or other similar national legislation, and to prevent any abuse of the privileges, immunities and facilities provided for in this Protocol.

(2) The procedure of co-operation mentioned in paragraph 1 may be laid down in the complementary agreements referred to in Article 25.

Article 21

Each Contracting State retains the right to take all precautions necessary in the interests of its security.

Article 22

No Contracting State is obliged to extend the privileges and immunities referred to in Article 12, Article 13, Article 14, sub-paragraphs (b), (e) and (g), and Article 15, sub-paragraph (c), to:

(a) its own nationals;

(b) any person who at the time of taking up his functions with the Organisation has his permanent residence in that State and is not an employee of any other inter-governmental organisation whose staff is incorporated into the Organisation.

Article 23

(1) Any Contracting State may submit to an international arbitration tribunal any dispute concerning the Organisation or an employee of the European Patent Office or an expert performing functions for or on its behalf, in so far as the Organisation or the employees and experts have claimed a privilege or an immunity under this Protocol in circumstances where that immunity has not been waived.

(2) If a Contracting State intends to submit a dispute to arbitration, it shall notify the Chairman of the Administrative Council, who shall forthwith inform each Contracting State of such notification.

(3) The procedure laid down in paragraph 1 of this Article shall not apply to disputes between the Organisation and the employees or experts in respect of the Service Regulations or conditions of employment or, with regard to the employees, the Pension Scheme Regulations.

(4) No appeal shall lie against the award of the arbitration tribunal, which shall be final; it shall be binding on the parties. In case of dispute concerning the import or scope of the award, it shall be incumbent upon the arbitration tribunal to interpret it on request by either party.

Article 24

(1) The arbitration tribunal referred to in Article 23 shall consist of three members, one arbitrator nominated by the State or States party to the arbitration, one arbitrator nominated by the Administrative Council and a third arbitrator, who shall be the chairman, nominated by the said two arbitrators.

(2) The arbitrators shall be nominated from a panel comprising no more than six arbitrators appointed by each Contracting State and six arbitrators appointed by the Administrative Council. This panel shall be established as soon as possible after the Protocol enters into force and shall be revised each time this proves necessary.

(3) If, within three months from the date of the notification referred to in Article 23, paragraph 2, either party fails to make the nomination referred to in paragraph 1 above, the choice of the arbitrator shall, on request of the other party, be made by the President of the International Court of Justice from the persons included in the said panel. This shall also apply, when so requested by either party, if within one month from the date of appointment of the second arbitrator, the first two arbitrators are unable to agree on the nomination of the third arbitrator. However, if, in these two cases, the President of the International Court of Justice is prevented from making the choice, or if he is a national of one of the States parties to the dispute, the Vice-President of the International Court of Justice shall make the aforementioned appointments, provided that he himself is not a national of one of the States parties to the dispute; if such is the case, the member of the International Court of Justice who is not a national of one of the States parties to the dispute and who has been chosen by the President or Vice-President shall make the appointments. A national of the State applying for arbitration may not be chosen to fill the post of the arbitrator whose appointment devolves on the Administrative Council nor may a person included in the panel and appointed by the Administrative Council be chosen to fill the post of an arbitrator whose appointment devolves on the State which is the claimant. Nor may a person of either of these categories be chosen as chairman of the Tribunal.

(4) The arbitration tribunal shall draw up its own rules of procedure.

Article 25

The Organisation may, on a decision of the Administrative Council, conclude with one or more Contracting States complementary agreements to give effect to the provisions of this Protocol as regards such State or States, and other arrangements to ensure the efficient functioning of the Organisation and the safeguarding of its interests.

 

PROTOCOL ON THE CENTRALISATION OF THE EUROPEAN PATENT SYSTEM AND ON ITS INTRODUCTION

(PROTOCOL ON CENTRALISATION)

of 5 October 1973

Section I

(1)(a) Upon entry into force of the Convention, States parties thereto which are also members of the International Patent Institute set up by the Hague Agreement of 6 June 1947 shall take all necessary steps to ensure the transfer to the European Patent Office no later than the date referred to in Article 162, paragraph 1, of the Convention of all assets and liabilities and all staff members of the International Patent Institute. Such transfer shall be effected by an agreement between the International Patent Institute and the European Patent Organisation. The above States and the other States parties to the Convention shall take all necessary steps to ensure that that agreement shall be implemented no later than the date referred to in Article 162, paragraph 1, of the Convention. Upon implementation of the agreement, those Member States of the International Patent Institute which are also parties to the Convention further undertake to terminate their participation in the Hague Agreement.

(b) The States parties to the Convention shall take all necessary steps to ensure that all the assets and liabilities and all the staff members of the International Patent Institute are taken into the European Patent Office in accordance with the agreement referred to in sub-paragraph (a). After the implementation of that agreement the tasks incumbent upon the International Patent Institute at the date on which the Convention is opened for signature, and in particular those carried out vis-à-vis its Member States, whether or not they become parties to the Convention, and such tasks as it has undertaken at the time of the entry into force of the Convention to carry out vis-à-vis States which, at that date, are both members of the International Patent Institute and parties to the Convention, shall be assumed by the European Patent Office. In addition, the Administrative Council of the European Patent Organisation may allocate further duties in the field of searching to the European Patent Office.

(c) The above obligations shall also apply mutatis mutandis to the sub-office set up under the Hague Agreement under the conditions set out in the agreement between the International Patent Institute and the Government of the Contracting State concerned. This Government hereby undertakes to make a new agreement with the European Patent Organisation in place of the one already made with the International Patent Institute to harmonise the clauses concerning the organisation, operation and financing of the sub-office with the provisions of this Protocol.

(2) Subject to the provisions of Section III, the States parties to the Convention shall, on behalf of their central industrial property offices, renounce in favour of the European Patent Office any activities as International Searching Authorities under the Patent Cooperation Treaty as from the date referred to in Article 162, paragraph 1, of the Convention.

(3)(a) A sub-office of the European Patent Office for searching European patent applications shall be set up in Berlin (West) as from the date referred to in Article 162, paragraph 1, of the Convention. It shall operate under the direction of the branch at The Hague.

(b) The Administrative Council shall determine the duties to be allocated to the sub-office in Berlin in the light of general considerations and of the requirements of the European Patent Office with regard to searching.

(c) At least at the beginning of the period following the progressive expansion of the field of activity of the European Patent Office, the amount of work assigned to that sub-office shall be sufficient to enable the examining staff of the Berlin Annex of the German Patent Office, as it stands at the date on which the Convention is opened for signature, to be fully employed.

(d) The Federal Republic of Germany shall bear any additional costs incurred by the European Patent Organisation in setting up and maintaining the sub-office in Berlin.

Section II

Subject to the provisions of Sections III and IV, the States parties to the Convention shall, on behalf of their central industrial property offices, renounce in favour of the European Patent Office any activities as International Preliminary Examining Authorities under the Patent Cooperation Treaty. This obligation shall apply only to the extent to which the European Patent Office may examine European patent applications in accordance with Article 162, paragraph 2, of the Convention and shall not apply until two years after the date on which the European Patent Office has begun examining activities in the areas of technology concerned, on the basis of a five-year plan which shall progressively extend the activities of the European Patent Office to all areas of technology and which may be amended only by decision of the Administrative Council. The procedures for implementing this obligation shall be determined by decision of the Administrative Council.

Section III

(1) The central industrial property office of any State party to the Convention in which the official language is not one of the official languages of the European Patent Office, shall be authorised to act as an International Searching Authority and as an International Preliminary Examining Authority under the Patent Cooperation Treaty. Such authorisation shall be subject to an undertaking by the State concerned to restrict such activities to international applications filed by nationals or residents of such State and by nationals or residents of States parties to the Convention which are adjacent to that State. The Administrative Council may decide to authorise the central industrial property office of any State party to the Convention to extend such activities to cover such international applications as may be filed by nationals or residents of any non-Contracting State having the same official language as the Contracting State in question and drawn up in that language.

(2) For the purpose of harmonising search activities under the Patent Cooperation Treaty within the framework of the European system for the grant of patents, co-operation shall be established between the European Patent Office and any central industrial property office authorised under this Section. Such co-operation shall be based on a special agreement which may cover e.g. search procedures and methods, qualifications required for the recruitment and training of examiners, guidelines for the exchange of search and other services between the offices as well as other measures needed to establish the required control and supervision.

Section IV

(1)(a) For the purpose of facilitating the adaptation of the national patent offices of the States parties to the Convention to the European patent system, the Administrative Council may, if it considers it desirable, and subject to the conditions set out below, entrust the central industrial property offices of such of those States in which it is possible to conduct the proceedings in one of the official languages of the European Patent Office with tasks concerning the examination of European patent applications drawn up in that language which, pursuant to Article 18, paragraph 2, of the Convention, shall, as a general rule, be entrusted to a member of the Examining Division. Such tasks shall be carried out within the framework of the proceedings for grant laid down in the Convention; decisions on such applications shall be taken by the Examining Division composed in accordance with Article 18, paragraph 2.

(b) Tasks entrusted under sub-paragraph (a) shall not be in respect of more than 40% of the total number of European patent applications filed; tasks entrusted to any one State shall not be in respect of more than one-third of the total number of European patent applications filed. These tasks shall be entrusted for a period of 15 years from the opening of the European Patent Office and shall be reduced progressively (in principle by 20% a year) to zero during the last 5 years of the period.

(c) The Administrative Council shall decide, while taking into account the provisions of sub-paragraph (b), upon the nature, origin and number of the European patent applications in respect of which examining tasks may be entrusted to the central industrial property office of each of the Contracting States mentioned above.

(d) The above implementing procedures shall be set out in a special agreement between the central industrial property office of the Contracting State concerned and the European Patent Organisation.

(e) An office with which such a special agreement has been concluded may act as an International Preliminary Examining Authority under the Patent Cooperation Treaty, until the expiry of the period of 15 years.

(2)(a) If the Administrative Council considers that it is compatible with the proper functioning of the European Patent Office, and in order to alleviate the difficulties which may arise for certain Contracting States from the application of Section I, paragraph 2, it may entrust searching in respect of European patent applications to the central industrial property offices of those States in which the official language is one of the official languages of the European Patent Office, provided that these offices possess the necessary qualifications for appointment as an International Searching Authority in accordance with the conditions laid down in the Patent Cooperation Treaty.

(b) In carrying out such work, undertaken under the responsibility of the European Patent Office, the central industrial property offices concerned shall adhere to the guidelines applicable to the drawing up of the European search report.

(c) The provisions of paragraph 1(b), second sentence, and sub-paragraph (d) of this Section shall apply to this paragraph.

Section V

(1) The sub-office referred to in Section I, paragraph 1(c), shall be authorised to carry out searches, among the documentation which is at its disposal and which is in the official language of the State in which the sub-office is located, in respect of European patent applications filed by nationals and residents of that State. This authorisation shall be on the understanding that the procedure for the grant of European patents will not be delayed and that additional costs will not be incurred for the European Patent Organisation.

(2) The sub-office referred to in paragraph 1 shall be authorised to carry out, at the option of an applicant for a European patent and at his expense, a search on his patent application among the documentation referred to in paragraph 1. This authorisation shall be effective until the search provided for in Article 92 of the Convention has been extended, in accordance with Section VI, to cover such documentation and shall be on the understanding that the procedure for the grant of European patents will not be delayed.

(3) The Administrative Council may also extend the authorisations provided for in paragraphs 1 and 2, under the conditions of those paragraphs, to the central industrial property office of a Contracting State which does not have as an official language one of the official languages of the European Patent Office.

Section VI

The search provided for in Article 92 of the Convention shall, in principle, be extended, in respect of all European patent applications, to published patents, published patent applications and other relevant documents of Contracting States not included in the search documentation of the European Patent Office on the date referred to in Article 162, paragraph 1, of the Convention. The extent, conditions and timing of any such extension shall be determined by the Administrative Council on the basis of a study concerning particularly the technical and financial aspects.

Section VII

The provisions of this Protocol shall prevail over any contradictory provisions of the Convention.

Section VIII

The decisions of the Administrative Council provided for in this Protocol shall require a three-quarters majority (Article 35, paragraph 2, of the Convention). The pro-visions governing the weighting of votes (Article 36 of the Convention) shall apply.

 

Implementing regulations to the Convention on the grant of European Patents

of 5 October 1973 as last amended by Decision of the Administrative Council

of the European Patent Organisation of 13 December 2001

 

Part I

IMPLEMENTING REGULATIONS TO PART I OF THE CONVENTION

Chapter I

Languages of the European Patent Office

Rule 1

Derogations from the provisions concerning the language of the proceedings in written proceedings

(1) In written proceedings before the European Patent Office any party may use any official language of the European Patent Office. The translation referred to in Article 14, paragraph 4, may be filed in any official language of the European Patent Office.

(2) Amendments to a European patent application or European patent must be filed in the language of the proceedings.

(3) Documents to be used for purposes of evidence before the European Patent Office, and particularly publications, may be filed in any language. The European Patent Office may, however, require that a translation be filed, within a given time limit of not less than one month, in one of its official languages.

Rule 2

Derogations from the provisions concerning the language of the proceedings in oral proceedings

(1) Any party to oral proceedings before the European Patent Office may, in lieu of the language of the proceedings, use one of the other official languages of the European Patent Office, on condition either that such party gives notice to the European Patent Office at least one month before the date laid down for such oral proceedings or makes provision for interpreting into the language of the proceedings. Any party may likewise use one of the official languages of the Contracting States, on condition that he makes provision for interpretation into the language of the proceedings. The European Patent Office may permit derogations from the provisions of this paragraph.

(2) In the course of oral proceedings, the employees of the European Patent Office may, in lieu of the language of the proceedings, use one of the other official languages of the European Patent Office.

(3) In the case of taking of evidence, any party to be heard, witness or expert who is unable to express himself adequately in one of the official languages of the European Patent Office or the Contracting States may use another language. Should the taking of evidence be decided upon following a request by a party to the proceedings, parties to be heard, witnesses or experts who express themselves in languages other than the official languages of the European Patent Office may be heard only if the party who made the request makes provision for interpretation into the language of the proceedings; the European Patent Office may, however, authorise interpretation into one of its other official languages.

(4) If the parties and the European Patent Office agree, any language may be used in oral proceedings.

(5) The European Patent Office shall, if necessary, make provision at its own expense for interpretation into the language of the proceedings, or, where appropriate, into its other official languages, unless this interpretation is the responsibility of one of the parties to the proceedings.

(6) Statements by employees of the European Patent Office, by parties to the proceedings and by witnesses and experts, made in one of the official languages of the European Patent Office during oral proceedings shall be entered in the minutes in the language employed. Statements made in any other language shall be entered in the official language into which they are translated. Amendments to the text of the description or claims of a European patent application or European patent shall be entered in the minutes in the language of the proceedings.

Rule 3

(deleted)

Rule 4

Language of a European divisional application

European divisional applications or, in the case referred to in Article 14, paragraph 2, the translations thereof, must be filed in the language of the proceedings for the earlier European patent application.

Rule 5

Certification of translations

When a translation of any document must be filed, the European Patent Office may require the filing of a certificate that the translation corresponds to the original text within a period to be determined by it. Failure to file the certificate in due time shall lead to the document being deemed not to have been received unless the Convention provides otherwise.

Rule 6

Time limits and reduction of fees

(1) The translation referred to in Article 14, paragraph 2, must be filed within three months after the filing of the European patent application, but no later than thirteen months after the date of priority. Nevertheless, if the translation concerns a European divisional application or a new European patent application under Article 61, paragraph 1(b), the translation may be filed at any time within one month of the filing of such application.

(2) The translation referred to in Article 14, paragraph 4, must be filed within one month of the filing of the document. Where the document is a notice of opposition or an appeal, this period shall be extended where appropriate to the end of the opposition period or appeal period.

(3) A reduction in the filing fee, examination fee, opposition fee or appeal fee shall be allowed an applicant, proprietor or opponent, as the case may be, who avails himself of the options provided in Article 14, paragraphs 2 and 4. The reduction shall be fixed in the Rules relating to Fees at a percentage of the total of the fees.

Rule 7

Legal authenticity of the translation of the European patent application

Saving proof to the contrary, the European Patent Office may, for the purposes of determining whether the subject-matter of the European patent application or European patent extends beyond the content of the European patent application as filed, assume that the translation referred to in Article 14, paragraph 2, is in conformity with the original text of the application.

Chapter II

Organisation of the European Patent Office

Rule 8

Patent classification

(1) The European Patent Office shall use:

(a) the classification referred to in Article 1 of the European Convention on the International Classification of Patents for Invention of 19 December 1954 until the entry into force of the Strasbourg Agreement concerning the International Patent Classification of 24 March 1971;

(b) the classification referred to in Article 1 of the aforementioned Strasbourg Agreement, after the entry into force of that Agreement.

(2) The classification referred to in paragraph 1 is hereinafter referred to as the international classification.

Rule 9

Allocation of duties to the departments of the first instance

(1) The President of the European Patent Office shall determine the number of Search Divisions, Examining Divisions and Opposition Divisions. He shall allocate duties to these departments by reference to the international classification and shall decide where necessary on the classification of a European patent application or a European patent in accordance with that classification.

(2) In addition to the responsibilities vested in them under the Convention, the President of the European Patent Office may allocate further duties to the Receiving Section, Search Divisions, Examining Divisions, Opposition Divisions and the Legal Division.

(3) The President of the European Patent Office may entrust to employees who are not technically or legally qualified examiners the execution of individual duties falling to the Examining Divisions or Opposition Divisions and involving no technical or legal difficulties.

(4) The President of the European Patent Office may grant exclusive responsibilities to one of the registries of the Opposition Divisions for fixing the amount of costs as provided for in Article 104, paragraph 2.

Rule 10

Presidium of the Boards of Appeal

(1) The autonomous authority within the organisational unit comprising the Boards of Appeal (the "Presidium of the Boards of Appeal") shall consist of the Vice-President in charge of the Boards of Appeal, who shall act as chairman, and twelve members of the Boards of Appeal, six being Chairmen and six being other members.

(2) All members of the Presidium shall be elected by the Chairmen and members of the Boards of Appeal for one working year. If the full composition of the Presidium cannot be reached, the vacancies shall be filled by designating the most senior Chairmen and members.

(3) The Presidium shall adopt the Rules of Procedure of the Boards of Appeal and the Rules of Procedure for the election and designation of its members. The Presidium shall further advise the Vice-President in charge of the Boards of Appeal with regard to matters concerning the functioning of the Boards of Appeal in general.

(4) Before the beginning of each working year the Presidium, extended to include all Chairmen, shall allocate duties to the Boards of Appeal. In the same composition, it shall decide on conflicts regarding the allocation of duties between two or more Boards of Appeal. The extended Presidium shall designate the regular and alternate members of the various Boards of Appeal. Any member of a Board of Appeal may be designated as a member of more than one Board of Appeal. These measures may, where necessary, be amended during the course of the working year in question.

(5) The Presidium may only take a decision if at least five of its members are present; these must include the Vice-President in charge of the Boards of Appeal or his deputy, and the Chairmen of two Boards of Appeal. Where the tasks mentioned in paragraph 4 are concerned, nine members must be present, including the Vice-President in charge of the Boards of Appeal or his deputy, and the Chairmen of three Boards of Appeal. Decisions shall be taken by a majority vote; in the event of parity of votes, the Chairman or his deputy shall have the casting vote. Abstentions shall not be considered as votes.

(6) The Administrative Council may allocate duties under Article134, paragraph 8(c), to the Boards of Appeal.

Rule 11

Business distribution scheme for the Enlarged Board of Appeal and adoption of its Rules of Procedure

(1) Before the beginning of each working year, the members of the Enlarged Board of Appeal who have not been appointed under Article 160, paragraph 2, shall designate the regular and alternate members of the Enlarged Board of Appeal.

(2) The members of the Enlarged Board of Appeal who have not been appointed under Article 160, paragraph 2, shall adopt the Rules of Procedure of the Enlarged Board of Appeal.

(3) Decisions on matters mentioned in paragraphs 1 and 2 may only be taken if at least five members are present, including the Chairman of the Enlarged Board of Appeal or his deputy; in the event of parity of votes, the Chairman or his deputy shall have the casting vote. Abstentions shall not be considered as votes.

Rule 12

Administrative structure of the European Patent Office

(1) The Examining Divisions and the Opposition Divisions shall be grouped together administratively so as to form Directorates, the number of which shall be laid down by the President of the European Patent Office.

(2) The Directorates, the Legal Division, the Boards of Appeal and the Enlarged Board of Appeal, and the administrative services of the European Patent Office shall be grouped together administratively so as to form Directorates-General. The Receiving Section and the Search Divisions shall be grouped together administratively so as to form a Directorate-General.

(3) Each Directorate-General shall be directed by a Vice-President. The appointment of a Vice-President to a Directorate-General shall be decided upon by the Administrative Council, after the President of the European Patent Office has been consulted.

Part II

IMPLEMENTING REGULATIONS TO PART II OF THE CONVENTION

Chapter I

Procedure where the applicant or proprietor is not entitled

Rule 13

Suspension of proceedings

(1) If a third party provides proof to the European Patent Office that he has opened proceedings against the applicant for the purpose of seeking a judgment that he is entitled to the grant of the European patent, the European Patent Office shall stay the proceedings for grant unless the third party consents to the continuation of such proceedings. Such consent must be communicated in writing to the European Patent Office; it shall be irrevocable. However, proceedings for grant may not be stayed before the publication of the European patent application.

(2) Where proof is provided to the European Patent Office that a decision which has become final has been given in the proceedings concerning entitlement to the grant of the European patent, the European Patent Office shall communicate to the applicant and any other party that the proceedings for grant shall be resumed as from the date stated in the communication unless a new European patent application pursuant to Article 61, paragraph 1(b), has been filed for all the designated Contracting States. If the decision is in favour of the third party, the proceedings may only be resumed after a period of three months of that decision becoming final unless the third party requests the resumption of the proceedings for grant.

(3) When giving a decision on the suspension of proceedings or thereafter the European Patent Office may set a date on which it intends to continue the proceedings pending before it regardless of the stage reached in the proceedings referred to in paragraph 1 opened against the applicant. The date is to be communicated to the third party, the applicant and any other party. If no proof has been provided by that date that a decision which has become final has been given, the European Patent Office may continue proceedings.

(4) If a third party provides proof to the European Patent Office during opposition proceedings or during the opposition period that he has opened proceedings against the proprietor of the European patent for the purpose of seeking a judgment that he is entitled to the European patent, the European Patent Office shall stay the opposition proceedings unless the third party consents to the continuation of such proceedings. Such comment must be communicated in writing to the European Patent Office; it shall be irrevocable. However, the suspension of the proceedings may not be ordered until the Opposition Division has deemed the opposition admissible. Paragraphs 2 and 3 shall apply mutatis mutandis.

(5) The time limits in force at the date of suspension other than time limits for payment of renewal fees shall be interrupted by such suspension. The time which has not yet elapsed shall begin to run as from the date on which proceedings are resumed; however, the time still to run after the resumption of the proceedings shall not be less than two months.

Rule 14

Limitation of the option to withdraw the European patent application

As from the time when a third party proves to the European Patent Office that he has initiated proceedings concerning entitlement and up to the date on which the European Patent Office resumes the proceedings for grant, neither the European patent application nor the designation of any Contracting State may be withdrawn.

Rule 15

Filing of a new European patent application by the person entitled to apply

(1) Where the person adjudged by a final decision to be entitled to the grant of the European patent files a new European patent application pursuant to Article 61, paragraph 1(b), the original European patent application shall be deemed to be withdrawn on the date of filing of the new application for the Contracting States designated therein in which the decision has been taken or recognized.

(2) The filing fee and search fee shall be payable in respect of the new European patent application within one month after the filing thereof. The designation fees shall be payable within six months of the date on which the European Patent Bulletin mentions the publication of the European search report drawn up in respect of the new European patent application.

(3) The time limits for forwarding European patent applications provided for in Article 77, paragraphs 3 and 5, shall, for the new European patent application, be four months as from the actual filing date of that application.

Rule 16

Partial transfer of right by virtue of a final decision

(1) If by a final decision it is adjudged that a third party is entitled to the grant of a European patent in respect of only part of the matter disclosed in the European patent application, Article 61 and Rule 15 shall apply mutatis mutandis to such part.

(2) Where appropriate, the original European patent application shall contain, for the designated Contracting States in which the decision was taken or recognized, claims, a description and drawings which are different from those for the other designated Contracting States.

(3) Where a third party has, in accordance with Article 99, paragraph 5, replaced the previous proprietor for one or some of the designated Contracting States, the patent as maintained in opposition proceedings may contain for these States claims, a description and drawings which are different from those for the other designated Contracting States.

Chapter II

Mention of the inventor

Rule 17

Designation of the inventor

(1) The designation of the inventor shall be filed in the request for the grant of a European patent. However, if the applicant is not the inventor or is not the sole inventor, the designation shall be filed in a separate document; the designation must state the family name, given names and full address of the inventor and the statement referred to in Article 81 and shall bear the signature of the applicant or his representative.

(2) The European Patent Office shall not verify the accuracy of the designation of the inventor.

(3) If the applicant is not the inventor or is not the sole inventor, the European Patent Office shall inform the designated inventor of the data in the document designating him and the further data mentioned in Article 128, paragraph 5.

(4) The applicant and the inventor may invoke neither the omission of the notification under paragraph 3 nor any errors contained therein.

Rule 18

Publication of the mention of the inventor

(1) The person designated as the inventor shall be mentioned as such in the published European patent application and the European patent specification, unless the said person informs the European Patent Office in writing that he waives his right to be thus mentioned.

(2) In the event of a third party filing with the European Patent Office a final decision whereby the applicant for or proprietor of a patent is required to designate him as the inventor, the provisions of paragraph1 shall apply.

Rule 19

Rectification of the designation of an inventor

(1) An incorrect designation of an inventor may not be rectified save upon request, accompanied by the consent of the wrongly designated person and, in the event of such request not being filed by the applicant for or proprietor of the European patent, by the consent of that party. The provisions of Rule 17 shall apply mutatis mutandis.

(2) In the event of an incorrect mention of the inventor having been entered in the Register of European Patents or published in the European Patent Bulletin such entry or publication shall be corrected.

(3) Paragraph 2 shall apply mutatis mutandis to the cancellation of an incorrect designation of the inventor.

Chapter III

Registering transfers, licences and other rights

Rule 20

Registering a transfer

(1) A transfer of a European patent application shall be recorded in the Register of European Patents at the request of an interested party and on production of documents satisfying the European Patent Office that the transfer has taken place.

(2) The request shall not be deemed to have been filed until such time as an administrative fee has been paid. It may be rejected only in the event of failure to comply with the conditions laid down in paragraph 1.

(3) A transfer shall have effect vis-à-vis the European Patent Office only when and to the extent that the documents referred to in paragraph 1 have been produced.

Rule 21

Registering of licences and other rights

(1) Rule 20, paragraphs 1 and 2, shall apply mutatis mutandis to the registration of the grant or transfer of a licence, the establishment or transfer of a right in rem in respect of a European patent application and any legal means of execution of such an application.

(2) The registration referred to in paragraph 1 shall be cancelled upon request, which shall not be deemed to have been filed until an administrative fee has been paid. Such request shall be supported either by documents establishing that the right has lapsed, or by a declaration whereby the proprietor of the right consents to the cancellation of the registration; it may be rejected only if these conditions are not fulfilled.

Rule 22

Special indications for the registration of a licence

(1) A licence in respect of a European patent application shall be recorded in the Register of European Patents as an exclusive licence if the applicant and the licensee so require.

(2) A licence in respect of a European patent application shall be recorded in the Register of European Patents as a sub-licence where it is granted by a licensee whose licence is recorded in the said Register.

Chapter IV

Certification of exhibition

Rule 23

Certificate of exhibition

The applicant must, within four months of the filing of the European patent application, file the certificate referred to in Article 55, paragraph 2, issued at the exhibition by the authority responsible for the protection of industrial property at that exhibition, and stating that the invention was in fact exhibited there. This certificate shall also state the opening date of the exhibition and, where the first disclosure of the invention did not coincide with the opening date of the exhibition, the date of the first disclosure. This certificate must be accompanied by an identification of the invention, duly authenticated by the above-mentioned authority.

Chapter V

Prior European applications

Rule 23a

Prior application as state of the art

A European patent application shall be considered as comprised in the state of the art under Article 54, paragraphs 3 and 4, only if the designation fees under Article 79, paragraph 2, have been validly paid.

Chapter VI

Biotechnological inventions

Rule 23b

General and definitions

(1) For European patent applications and patents concerning biotechnological inventions, the relevant provisions of the Convention shall be applied and interpreted in accordance with the provisions of this chapter. Directive 98/44/EC of 6July 1998 on the legal protection of biotechnological inventions shall be used as a supplementary means of interpretation.

(2) "Biotechnological inventions" are inventions which concern a product consisting of or containing biological material or a process by means of which biological material is produced, processed or used.

(3) "Biological material" means any material containing genetic information and capable of reproducing itself or being reproduced in a biological system.

(4) "Plant variety" means any plant grouping within a single botanical taxon of the lowest known rank, which grouping, irrespective of whether the conditions for the grant of a plant variety right are fully met, can be:

(a) defined by the expression of the characteristics that results from a given genotype or combination of genotypes,

(b) distinguished from any other plant grouping by the expression of at least one of the said characteristics, and

(c) considered as a unit with regard to its suitability for being propagated unchanged.

(5) A process for the production of plants or animals is essentially biological if it consists entirely of natural phenomena such as crossing or selection.

(6) "Microbiological process" means any process involving or performed upon or resulting in microbiological material.

Rule 23c

Patentable biotechnological inventions

Biotechnological inventions shall also be patentable if they concern:

(a) biological material which is isolated from its natural environment or produced by means of a technical process even if it previously occurred in nature;

(b) plants or animals if the technical feasibility of the invention is not confined to a particular plant or animal variety;

(c) a microbiological or other technical process, or a product obtained by means of such a process other than a plant or animal variety.

Rule 23d

Exceptions to patentability

Under Article 53(a), European patents shall not be granted in respect of biotechnological inventions which, in particular, concern the following:

(a) processes for cloning human beings;

(b) processes for modifying the germ line genetic identity of human beings;

(c) uses of human embryos for industrial or commercial purposes;

(d) processes for modifying the genetic identity of animals which are likely to cause them suffering without any substantial medical benefit to man or animal, and also animals resulting from such processes.

Rule 23e

The human body and its elements

(1) The human body, at the various stages of its formation and development, and the simple discovery of one of its elements, including the sequence or partial sequence of a gene, cannot constitute patentable inventions.

(2) An element isolated from the human body or otherwise produced by means of a technical process, including the sequence or partial sequence of a gene, may constitute a patentable invention, even if the structure of that element is identical to that of a natural element.

(3) The industrial application of a sequence or a partial sequence of a gene must be disclosed in the patent application.

Part III

IMPLEMENTING REGULATIONS TO PART III OF THE CONVENTION

Chapter I

Filing of the European patent application

Rule 24

General provisions

(1) European patent applications may be filed in writing with the authorities referred to in Article 75 either directly or by post. The President of the European Patent Office may permit European patent applications to be filed by other means of communication and lay down conditions governing their use. He may, in particular, require that within such period as the European Patent Office shall specify written confirmation be supplied reproducing the contents of applications so filed and complying with the requirements of these Implementing Regulations.

(2) The authority with which the European patent application is filed shall mark the documents making up the application with the date of their receipt. It shall issue without delay a receipt to the applicant which shall include at least the application number, the nature and number of the documents and the date of their receipt.

(3) If the European patent application is filed with an authority mentioned in Article 75, paragraph 1(b), it shall without delay inform the European Patent Office of receipt of the documents making up the application. It shall inform the European Patent Office of the nature and date of receipt of the documents, the application number and any priority date claimed.

(4) When the European Patent Office has received a European patent application which has been forwarded by a central industrial property office of a Contracting State, it shall inform the applicant accordingly, indicating the date of its receipt at the European Patent Office.

Rule 25

Provisions for European divisional applications

(1) The applicant may file a divisional application relating to any pending earlier European patent application.

(2) The filing fee and search fee shall be payable in respect of a European divisional application within one month after the filing thereof. The designation fees shall be payable within six months of the date on which the European Patent Bulletin mentions the publication of the European search report drawn up in respect of the European divisional application.

Chapter II

Provisions governing the application

Rule 26

Request for grant

(1) The request for the grant of a European patent shall be filed on a form drawn up by the European Patent Office. Printed forms shall be made available to applicants free of charge by the authorities referred to in Article 75, paragraph 1.

(2) The request shall contain:

(a) a petition for the grant of a European patent;

(b) the title of the invention, which shall clearly and concisely state the technical designation of the invention and shall exclude all fancy names;

(c) the name, address and nationality of the applicant and the State in which his residence or principal place of business is located. Names of natural persons shall be indicated by the person's family name and given name(s), the family name being indicated before the given name(s). Names of legal entities, as well as companies considered to be legal entities by reason of the legislation to which they are subject, shall be indicated by their official designations. Addresses shall be indicated in such a way as to satisfy the customary requirements for prompt postal delivery at the indicated address. They shall in any case comprise all the relevant administrative units, including the house number, if any. It is recommended that the telegraphic and telex address and telephone number be indicated;

(d) if the applicant has appointed a representative, his name and the address of his place of business under the conditions contained in sub-paragraph (c);

(e) where appropriate, indication that the application constitutes a European divisional application and the number of the earlier European patent application;

(f) in cases covered by Article 61, paragraph 1(b), the number of the original European patent application;

(g) where applicable, a declaration claiming the priority of an earlier application and indicating the date on which and the country in or for which the earlier application was filed;

(h) designation of the Contracting State or States in which protection of the invention is desired;

(i) the signature of the applicant or his representative;

(j) a list of the documents accompanying the request. This list shall also indicate the number of sheets of the description, claims, drawings and abstract filed with the request;

(k) the designation of the inventor where the applicant is the inventor.

(3) If there is more than one applicant, the request shall preferably contain the appointment of one applicant or representative as common representative.

Rule 27

Content of the description

(1) The description shall:

(a) specify the technical field to which the invention relates;

(b) indicate the background art which, as far as known to the applicant, can be regarded as useful for understanding the invention, for drawing up the European search report and for the examination, and, preferably, cite the documents reflecting such art;

(c) disclose the invention, as claimed, in such terms that the technical problem (even if not expressly stated as such) and its solution can be understood, and state any advantageous effects of the invention with reference to the background art;

(d) briefly describe the figures in the drawings, if any;

(e) describe in detail at least one way of carrying out the invention claimed using examples where appropriate and referring to the drawings, if any;

(f) indicate explicitly, when it is not obvious from the description or nature of the invention, the way in which the invention is capable of exploitation in industry.

(2) The description shall be presented in the manner and order specified in paragraph 1, unless because of the nature of the invention, a different manner or a different order would afford a better understanding and a more economic presentation.

Rule 27a

Requirements of European patent applications relating to nucleotide and amino acid sequences

(1) If nucleotide or amino acid sequences are disclosed in the European patent application the description shall contain a sequence listing conforming to the rules laid down by the President of the European Patent Office for the standardised representation of nucleotide and amino acid sequences.

(2) The President of the European Patent Office may require that, in addition to the written application documents, a sequence listing in accordance with paragraph 1 be submitted on a data carrier prescribed by him accompanied by a statement that the information recorded on the data carrier is identical to the written sequence listing.

(3) If a sequence listing is filed or corrected after the date of filing, the applicant shall submit a statement that the sequence listing so filed or corrected does not include matter which goes beyond the content of the application as filed.

(4) A sequence listing filed after the date of filing shall not form part of the description.

Rule 28

Deposit of biological material

(1) If an invention involves the use of or concerns biological material which is not available to the public and which cannot be described in the European patent application in such a manner as to enable the invention to be carried out by a person skilled in the art, the invention shall only be regarded as being disclosed as prescribed in Article83 if:

(a) a sample of the biological material has been de-posited with a recognized depositary institution not later than the date of filing of the application;

(b) the application as filed gives such relevant information as is available to the applicant on the characteristics of the biological material;

(c) the depositary institution and the accession number of the deposited biological material are stated in the application, and

(d) where the biological material has been deposited by a person other than the applicant, the name and address of the depositor are stated in the application and a document is submitted satisfying the European Patent Office that the latter has authorized the applicant to refer to the deposited biological material in the application and has given his unreserved and irrevocable consent to the deposited material being made available to the public in accordance with this Rule.

(2) The information referred to in paragraph1(c) and, where applicable, (d) may be submitted

(a) within a period of sixteen months after the date of filing of the application or, if priority is claimed, after the priority date, this time limit being deemed to have been met if the information is communicated before completion of the technical preparations for publication of the European patent application;

(b) up to the date of submission of a request for early publication of the application;

(c) within one month after the European Patent Office has communicated to the applicant that a right to inspect the files pursuant to Article 128, paragraph 2, exists.

The ruling period shall be the one which is the first to expire. The communication of this information shall be considered as constituting the unreserved and irrevocable consent of the applicant to the deposited biological material being made available to the public in accordance with this Rule.

(3) The deposited biological material shall be available upon request to any person from the date of publication of the European patent application and to any person having the right to inspect the files pursuant to Article128, paragraph 2, prior to that date. Subject to paragraph 4, such availability shall be effected by the issue of a sample of the biological material to the person making the request (hereinafter referred to as "the requester").

Said issue shall be made only if the requester has undertaken vis-à-vis the applicant for or proprietor of the patent not to make the biological material or any biological material derived therefrom available to any third party and to use that material for experimental purposes only, until such time as the patent application is refused or withdrawn or deemed to be withdrawn, or before the expiry of the patent in the designated State in which it last expires, unless the applicant for or proprietor of the patent expressly waives such an undertaking.

The undertaking to use the biological material for experimental purposes only shall not apply in so far as the requester is using that material under a compulsory licence. The term "compulsory licence" shall be construed as including ex officio licences and the right to use patented inventions in the public interest.

(4) Until completion of the technical preparations for publication of the application, the applicant may inform the European Patent Office that

(a) until the publication of the mention of the grant of the European patent or, where applicable,

(b) for twenty years from the date of filing if the application has been refused or withdrawn or deemed to be withdrawn, the availability referred to in paragraph3 shall be effected only by the issue of a sample to an expert nominated by the requester.

(5) The following may be nominated as an expert:

(a) any natural person provided that the requester furnishes evidence, when filing the request, that the nomination has the approval of the applicant;

(b) any natural person recognized as an expert by the President of the European Patent Office.

The nomination shall be accompanied by a declaration from the expert vis-à-vis the applicant in which he enters into the undertaking given pursuant to paragraph3 until either the date on which the patent expires in all the designated States or, where the application has been refused, withdrawn or deemed to be withdrawn, until the date referred to in paragraph4(b), the requester being regarded as a third party.

(6) For the purposes of paragraph 3, derived biological material shall mean any material which still exhibits those characteristics of the deposited material which are essential to carrying out the invention. The undertaking referred to in paragraph 3 shall not impede any deposit of derived biological material necessary for the purpose of patent procedure.

(7) The request provided for in paragraph3 shall be submitted to the European Patent Office on a form recognized by that Office. The European Patent Office shall certify on the form that a European patent application referring to the deposit of the biological material has been filed, and that the requester or the expert nominated by him is entitled to the issue of a sample of that material. After grant of the European patent, the request shall also be submitted to the European Patent Office.

(8) The European Patent Office shall transmit a copy of the request, with the certification provided for in paragraph 7, to the depositary institution as well as to the applicant for or the proprietor of the patent.

(9) The President of the European Patent Office shall publish in the Official Journal of the European Patent Office the list of depositary institutions and experts recognized for the purpose of this Rule.

Rule 28a

New deposit of biological material

(1) If biological material deposited in accordance with Rule28, paragraph1, ceases to be available from the institution with which it was deposited because:

(a) the biological material is no longer viable, or

(b) for any other reason the depositary institution is unable to supply samples,

and if no sample of the biological material has been transferred to another depositary institution recognized for the purposes of Rule28, from which it continues to be available, an interruption in availability shall be deemed not to have occurred if a new deposit of the biological material originally deposited is made within a period of three months from the date on which the depositor was notified of the interruption by the depositary institution and if a copy of the receipt of the deposit issued by the institution is forwarded to the European Patent Office within four months from the date of the new deposit stating the number of the application or of the European patent.

(2) In the case provided for in paragraph 1(a), the new deposit shall be made with the depositary institution with which the original deposit was made; in the cases provided for in paragraph 1(b), it may be made with another depositary institution recognized for the purposes of Rule 28.

(3) Where the institution with which the original deposit was made ceases to be recognized for the purposes of Rule28, either entirely or for the kind of biological material to which the deposited sample belongs, or where that institution discontinues, temporarily or definitively, the performance of its functions as regards deposited biological material, and the notification referred to in paragraph 1 from the depositary institution is not received within six months from the date of such event, the three-month period referred to in paragraph 1 shall begin on the date on which this event is announced in the Official Journal of the European Patent Office.

(4) Any new deposit shall be accompanied by a statement signed by the depositor certifying that the newly deposited biological material is the same as that originally deposited.

(5) If the new deposit has been made under the provisions of the Budapest Treaty on the International Recognition of the Deposit of Microorganisms for the Purposes of Patent Procedure of 28 April 1977, the provisions of that Treaty shall prevail.

Rule 29

Form and content of claims

(1) The claims shall define the matter for which protection is sought in terms of the technical features of the invention. Wherever appropriate claims shall contain:

(a) a statement indicating the designation of the subject-matter of the invention and those technical features which are necessary for the definition of the claimed subject-matter but which, in combination, are part of the prior art;

(b) a characterising portion - preceded by the expression "characterised in that" or "characterised by" - stating the technical features which, in combination with the features stated in sub-paragraph (a), it is desired to protect.

(2) Without prejudice to Article 82, a European patent application may contain more than one independent claim in the same category (product, process, apparatus or use) only if the subject-matter of the application involves one of the following:

(a) a plurality of inter-related products;

(b) different uses of a product or apparatus;

(c) alternative solutions to a particular problem, where it is not appropriate to cover these alternatives by a single claim.

(3) Any claim stating the essential features of an invention may be followed by one or more claims concerning particular embodiments of that invention.

(4) Any claim which includes all the features of any other claim (dependent claim) shall contain, if possible at the beginning, a reference to the other claim and then state the additional features which it is desired to protect. A dependent claim shall also be admissible where the claim it directly refers to is itself a dependent claim. All dependent claims referring back to a single previous claim, and all dependent claims referring back to several previous claims, shall be grouped together to the extent and in the most appropriate way possible.

(5) The number of the claims shall be reasonable in consideration of the nature of the invention claimed. If there are several claims, they shall be numbered consecutively in Arabic numerals.

(6) Claims shall not, except where absolutely necessary, rely, in respect of the technical features of the invention, on references to the description or drawings. In particular, they shall not rely on such references as: "as described in part ... of the description", or "as illustrated in figure ... of the drawings".

(7) If the European patent application contains drawings, the technical features mentioned in the claims shall preferably, if the intelligibility of the claim can thereby be increased, be followed by reference signs relating to these features and placed between parentheses. These reference signs shall not be construed as limiting the claim.

Rule 30

Unity of invention

(1) Where a group of inventions is claimed in one and the same European patent application, the requirement of unity of invention referred to in Article 82 shall be fulfilled only when there is a technical relationship among those inventions involving one or more of the same or corresponding special technical features. The expression "special technical features" shall mean those features which define a contribution which each of the claimed inventions considered as a whole makes over the prior art.

(2) The determination whether a group of inventions is so linked as to form a single general inventive concept shall be made without regard to whether the inventions are claimed in separate claims or as alternatives within a single claim.

Rule 31

Claims incurring fees

(1) Any European patent application comprising more than ten claims at the time of filing shall, in respect of each claim over and above that number, incur payment of a claims fee. The claims fee shall be payable within one month after the filing of the application. If the claims fees have not been paid in due time they may still be validly paid within a period of grace of one month of notification of a communication pointing out the failure to observe the time limit.

(2) If a claims fee is not paid within the period referred to in paragraph 1, the claim concerned shall be deemed to be abandoned. Any claims fee duly paid shall be refunded only in the case referred to in Article 77, paragraph 5.

Rule 32

Form of the drawings

(1) On sheets containing drawings, the usable surface area shall not exceed 26.2cm x 17 cm. These sheets shall not contain frames round the usable or used surface. The minimum margins shall be as follows:

top

2.5 cm

left side

2.5 cm

right side

1.5 cm

bottom

1 cm

(2) Drawings shall be executed as follows:

(a) Drawings shall be executed in durable, black, sufficiently dense and dark, uniformly thick and well-defined, lines and strokes without colourings.

(b) Cross-sections shall be indicated by hatching which should not impede the clear reading of the reference signs and leading lines.

(c) The scale of the drawings and the distinctness of their graphical execution shall be such that reproduction, obtained electronically or photographically, with a linear reduction in size to two-thirds would enable all details to be distinguished without difficulty. If, as an exception, the scale is given on a drawing, it shall be represented graphically.

(d) All numbers, letters, and reference signs, appearing on the drawings, shall be simple and clear. Brackets, circles or inverted commas shall not be used in association with numbers and letters.

(e) All lines in the drawings shall, ordinarily, be drawn with the aid of drafting instruments.

(f) Elements of the same figure shall be in proportion to each other, unless a difference in proportion is indispensable for the clarity of the figure.

(g) The height of the numbers and letters shall not be less than 0.32 cm. For the lettering of drawings, the Latin and, where customary, the Greek alphabets shall be used.

(h) The same sheet of drawings may contain several figures. Where figures drawn on two or more sheets are intended to form one whole figure, the figures on the several sheets shall be so arranged that the whole figure can be assembled without concealing any part of the partial figures. The different figures shall be arranged without wasting space, preferably in an upright position, clearly separated from one another. Where the figures are not arranged in an upright position, they shall be presented sideways with the top of the figures at the left side of the sheet. The different figures shall be numbered consecutively in Arabic numerals, independently of the numbering of the sheets.

(i) Reference signs not mentioned in the description and claims shall not appear in the drawings, and vice versa. The same features, when denoted by reference signs, shall, throughout the application, be denoted by the same signs.

(j) The drawings shall not contain text matter, except, when absolutely indispensable, a single word or words such as "water", "steam", "open", "closed", "section on AB", and, in the case of electric circuits and block schematic or flow sheet diagrams, a few short catchwords indispensable for understanding. Any such words shall be placed in such a way that, if required, they can be replaced by their translations without interfering with any lines of the drawings.

(3) Flow sheets and diagrams are considered drawings.

Rule 33

Form and content of the abstract

(1) The abstract shall indicate the title of the invention.

(2) The abstract shall contain a concise summary of the disclosure as contained in the description, the claims and any drawings; the summary shall indicate the technical field to which the invention pertains and shall be drafted in a way which allows the clear understanding of the technical problem, the gist of the solution of that problem through the invention and the principal use or uses of the invention. The abstract shall, where applicable, contain the chemical formula which, among those contained in the application, best characterises the invention. It shall not contain statements on the alleged merits or value of the invention or on its speculative application.

(3) The abstract shall preferably not contain more than one hundred and fifty words.

(4) If the European patent application contains drawings, the applicant shall indicate the figure or, exceptionally, the figures of the drawings which he suggests should accompany the abstract when the abstract is published. The European Patent Office may decide to publish one or more other figures if it considers that they better characterise the invention. Each main feature mentioned in the abstract and illustrated by a drawing shall be followed by a reference sign, placed between parentheses.

(5) The abstract shall be so drafted that it constitutes an efficient instrument for purposes of searching in the particular technical field particularly by making it possible to assess whether there is a need for consulting the European patent application itself.

Rule 34

Prohibited matter

(1) The European patent application shall not contain:

(a) statements or other matter contrary to "ordre public" or morality;

(b) statements disparaging the products or processes of any particular person other than the applicant, or the merits or validity of applications or patents of any such person. Mere comparisons with the prior art shall not be considered disparaging per se;

(c) any statement or other matter obviously irrelevant or unnecessary under the circumstances.

(2) If a European patent application contains prohibited matter within the meaning of paragraph 1(a), the European Patent Office shall omit it when publishing the application, indicating the place and number of words or drawings omitted.

(3) If a European patent application contains statements within the meaning of paragraph 1(b), the European Patent Office may omit them when publishing the application. It shall indicate the place and number of words omitted, and shall furnish, upon request, a copy of the passages omitted.

Rule 35

General provisions governing the presentation of the application documents

(1) Translations mentioned in Article 14, paragraph 2, shall be considered to be included in the term "documents making up the European patent application".

(2) The documents making up the European patent application shall be filed in three copies. The President of the European Patent Office may, however, determine that the documents shall be filed in fewer than three copies.

(3) The documents making up the European patent application shall be so presented as to admit of electronic as well as of direct reproduction, in particular by scanning, photography, electrostatic processes, photo offset and micro filming, in an unlimited number of copies. All sheets shall be free from cracks, creases and folds. Only one side of the sheet shall be used.

(4) The documents making up the European patent application shall be on A 4 paper (29.7 cm x 21 cm) which shall be pliable, strong, white, smooth, matt and durable. Subject to the provisions of Rule 32, paragraph 2(h), and paragraph 11 of this Rule, each sheet shall be used with its short sides at the top and bottom (upright position).

(5) Each of the documents making up the European patent application (request, description, claims, drawings and abstract) shall commence on a new sheet. The sheets shall be connected in such a way that they can easily be turned over, separated and joined together again.

(6) Subject to Rule 32, paragraph 1, the minimum margins shall be as follows:

top:

2 cm

left side:

2.5 cm

right side:

2 cm

bottom:

2 cm

The recommended maximum for the margins quoted above is as follows:

top:

4 cm

left side:

4 cm

right side:

3 cm

bottom:

3 cm

(7) The margins of the documents making up the European patent application, when submitted, must be completely blank.

(8) All the sheets contained in the European patent application shall be numbered in consecutive Arabic numerals. These shall be placed at the top of the sheet, in the middle, but not in the top margin.

(9) The lines of each sheet of the description and of the claims shall preferably be numbered in sets of five, the numbers appearing on the left side, to the right of the margin.

(10) The request for the grant of a European patent, the description, the claims and the abstract shall be typed or printed. Only graphic symbols and characters and chemical or mathematical formulae may, if necessary, be written by hand or drawn. The typing shall be 1 ½ spaced. All text matter shall be in characters, the capital letters of which are not less than 0.21 cm high, and shall be in a dark, indelible colour.

(11) The request for the grant of a European patent, the description, the claims and the abstract shall not contain drawings. The description, the claims and the abstract may contain chemical or mathematical formulae. The description and the abstract may contain tables. The claims may contain tables only if their subject-matter makes the use of tables desirable. Tables and chemical or mathematical formulae may be placed sideways on the sheet if they cannot be presented satisfactorily in an upright position thereon; sheets on which tables or chemical or mathematical formulae arepresented sideways shall be so presented that the tops of the tables or formulae are at the left side of the sheet.

(12) Physical values shall be expressed in the units recognized in international practice, wherever appropriate in terms of the metric system using SI units. Any data not meeting this requirement must also be expressed in the units recognized in international practice. For mathematical formulae the symbols in general use shall be employed. For chemical formulae the symbols, atomic weights and molecular formulae in general use shall be employed. In general, use should be made of the technical terms, signs and symbols generally accepted in the field in question.

(13) The terminology and the signs shall be consistent throughout the European patent application.

(14) Each sheet shall be reasonably free from erasures and shall be free from alterations, overwritings and interlineations. Non-compliance with this rule may be authorized if the authenticity of the content is not in question and the requirements for good reproduction are not in jeopardy.

Rule 36

Documents filed subsequently

(1) Rules 27, 29 and 32 to 35 shall apply to documents replacing documents making up the European patent application. Rule 35, paragraphs 2 to 14, shall also apply to the translation of the claims referred to in Rule 51.

(2) All documents other than those referred to in the first sentence of paragraph 1 shall normally be typewritten or printed. There must be a margin of about 2.5 cm on the left-hand side of each page.

(3) All documents, with the exception of annexed documents, filed after filing of the European patent application must be signed. If a document has not been signed, the European Patent Office shall invite the party concerned to do so within a time limit to be laid down by that Office. If signed in due time, the document shall retain its original date of receipt; otherwise it shall be deemed not to have been received.

(4) Such documents as must be communicated to other persons or as relate to two or more European patent applications or European patents, must be filed in a sufficient number of copies. If the party concerned does not comply with this obligation in spite of a request by the European Patent Office, the missing copies shall be provided at the expense of the party concerned.

(5) Notwithstanding paragraphs 2 to 4 the President of the European Patent Office may permit documents filed after filing of the European patent application to be transmitted to the European Patent Office by other means of communication and lay down conditions governing their use. He may, in particular, require that within a period laid down by him written confirmation be supplied reproducing the contents of documents so filed and complying with the requirements of these Implementing Regulations; if such confirmation is not supplied in due time, the documents shall be deemed not to have been received.

Chapter III

Renewal fees

Rule 37

Payment of renewal fees

(1) Renewal fees for the European patent application in respect of the coming year shall be due on the last day of the month containing the anniversary of the date of filing of the European patent application. Renewal fees may not be validly paid more than one year before they fall due.

(2) An additional fee shall be deemed to have been paid at the same time as the renewal fee within the meaning of Article 86, paragraph 2, if it is paid within the period laid down in that provision.

(3) Renewal fees already due in respect of an earlier application up to the date on which a European divisional application is filed must also be paid for the divisional application and fall due when the latter is filed. These fees and any renewal fee falling due within a period of four months from the filing of the divisional application may be paid without an additional fee within that period. If payment is not made in due time, the renewal fees may still be validly paid within six months of the due date, provided that the additional fee under Article 86, paragraph 2, is paid at the same time.

(4) Renewal fees shall not be payable for a new European patent application filed pursuant to Article 61, paragraph 1(b), in respect of the year in which it was actually filed and any preceding year.

Chapter IV

Priority

Rule 38

Declaration of priority and priority documents

(1) The declaration of priority referred to in Article 88, paragraph 1, shall state the date of the previous filing and the State in or for which it was made and shall indicate the file number.

(2) The date and State of the previous filing must be stated on filing the European patent application; the file number shall be indicated before the end of the sixteenth month after the date of priority.

(3) The copy of the previous application must be filed before the end of the sixteenth month after the date of priority. The copy must be certified as an exact copy of the previous application by the authority which received the previous application and must be accompanied by a certificate issued by that authority stating the date of filing of the previous application.

(4) The copy of the previous application shall be deemed duly filed if a copy of that application available to the European Patent Office is to be included in the file of the European patent application under the conditions laid down by the President of the European Patent Office.

(5) The translation of the previous application required under Article 88, paragraph 1, must be filed within a time limit to be set by the European Patent Office, but at the latest within the time limit under Rule 51, paragraph 4. Alternatively, a declaration may be submitted that the European patent application is a complete translation of the previous application. Paragraph 4 shall apply mutatis mutandis.

(6) The particulars stated in the declaration of priority shall appear in the published European patent application and also on the European patent specification.

Rule 38a

Issuing priority documents

On request, the European Patent Office shall issue a certified copy of the European patent application (priority document) to the applicant. The President of the European Patent Office shall determine all necessary arrangements, including the form of the priority document and the circumstances in which an administrative fee is payable.

Part IV

IMPLEMENTING REGULATIONS TO PART IV OF THE CONVENTION

Chapter I

Examination by the Receiving Section

Rule 39

Communication following the examination on filing

If the European patent application fails to meet the requirements laid down in Article 80, the Receiving Section shall communicate the disclosed deficiencies to the applicant and inform him that the application will not be dealt with as a European patent application unless he remedies the disclosed deficiencies within one month. If he does so, he shall be informed of the date of filing.

Rule 40

Examination for certain physical requirements

The physical requirements which a European patent application must satisfy pursuant to Article 91, paragraph 1(b), shall be those prescribed in Rule 27a, paragraphs 1 to 3, Rule 32, paragraphs 1 and 2, Rule 35, paragraphs 2 to 11 and 14, and Rule 36, paragraphs 2 and 4.

Rule 41

Rectification of deficiencies in the application documents

(1) If the examination provided for in Article 91, paragraph 1(a) to (d), reveals deficiencies in the European patent application, the Receiving Section shall inform the applicant accordingly and invite him to remedy the deficiencies within such period as it shall specify. The description, claims and drawings may be amended only to an extent sufficient to remedy the disclosed deficiencies in accordance with the observations of the Receiving Section.

(2) Paragraph 1 shall not apply where the applicant, while claiming priority, has omitted to indicate on filing the European patent application the date or State of first filing.

(3) Paragraph 1 shall not apply where the examination reveals that the date of the first filing given on filing the European patent application precedes the date of filing of the European patent application by more than one year. In this event the Receiving Section shall inform the applicant that there will be no right of priority for the application unless, within one month, the applicant indicates a corrected date, lying within the year preceding the date of filing of the European patent application.

Rule 42

Subsequent identification of the inventor

(1) If the examination provided for in Article 91, paragraph 1(f), reveals that the inventor has not been identified in accordance with the provisions of Rule 17, the Receiving Section shall inform the applicant that the European patent application shall be deemed to be withdrawn unless this deficiency is corrected within the period prescribed by Article 91, paragraph 5.

(2) In the case of a European divisional application or a new European patent application filed pursuant to Article 61, paragraph 1(b), the time limit for identifying the inventor may in no case expire before two months after the communication referred to in paragraph 1, which shall state the time limit.

Rule 43

Late-filed or missing drawings

(1) If the examination provided for in Article 91, paragraph 1(g), reveals that the drawings were filed later than the date of filing of the European patent application, the Receiving Section shall inform the applicant that the drawings and the references to the drawings in the European patent application shall be deemed to be deleted unless the applicant requests within a period of one month that the application be re-dated to the date on which the drawings were filed.

(2) If the examination reveals that the drawings were not filed, the Receiving Section shall invite him to file them within one month and inform him that the application will be re-dated to the date on which they are filed, or, if they are not filed in due time, any reference to them in the application shall be deemed to be deleted.

(3) The applicant shall be informed of any new date of filing of the application.

Chapter II

European search report

Rule 44

Content of the European search report

(1) The European search report shall mention those documents, available to the European Patent Office at the time of drawing up the report, which may be taken into consideration in deciding whether the invention to which the European patent application relates is new and involves an inventive step.

(2) Each citation shall be referred to the claims to which it relates. If necessary, the relevant parts of the documents cited shall be identified (for example, by indicating the page, column and lines or the diagrams).

(3) The European search report shall distinguish between cited documents published before the date of priority claimed, between such date of priority and the date of filing, and on or after the date of filing.

(4) Any document which refers to an oral disclosure, a use or any other means of disclosure which took place prior to the date of filing of the European patent application shall be mentioned in the European search report, together with an indication of the date of publication, if any, of the document and the date of the non-written disclosure.

(5) The European search report shall be drawn up in the language of the proceedings.

(6) The European search report shall contain the classification of the subject-matter of the European patent application in accordance with the international classification.

Rule 45

Incomplete search

If the Search Division considers that the European patent application does not comply with the provisions of the Convention to such an extent that it is not possible to carry out a meaningful search into the state of the art on the basis of all or some of the claims, it shall either declare that search is not possible or shall, so far as is practicable, draw up a partial European search report. The declaration and the partial report referred to shall be considered, for the purposes of subsequent proceedings, as the European search report.

Rule 46

European search report where the invention lacks unity

(1) If the Search Division considers that the European patent application does not comply with the requirement of unity of invention, it shall draw up a partial European search report on those parts of the European patent application which relate to the invention, or the group of inventions within the meaning of Article 82, first mentioned in the claims. It shall inform the applicant that if the European search report is to cover the other inventions, a further search fee must be paid, for each invention involved, within a period to be fixed by the Search Division which must not be shorter than two weeks and must not exceed six weeks. The Search Division shall draw up the European search report for those parts of the European patent application which relate to inventions in respect of which search fees have been paid.

(2) Any fee which has been paid under paragraph 1 shall be refunded if, during the examination of the European patent application by the Examining Division, the applicant requests a refund and the Examining Division finds that the communication referred to in the said paragraph was not justified.

Rule 47

Definitive content of the abstract

(1) At the same time as drawing up the European search report, the Search Division shall determine the definitive content of the abstract.

(2) The definitive content of the abstract shall be transmitted to the applicant together with the European search report.

Chapter III

Publication of the European patent application

Rule 48

Technical preparations for publication

(1) The President of the European Patent Office shall determine when the technical preparations for publication of the European patent application are to be deemed to have been completed.

(2) The European patent application shall not be published if it has been finally refused or withdrawn or deemed to be withdrawn before the termination of the technical preparations for publication.

Rule 49

Form of the publication of European patent applications and European search reports

(1) The President of the European Patent Office shall prescribe the form of the publication of the European patent application and the data which are to be included. The same shall apply where the European search report and the abstract are published separately. The President of the European Patent Office may lay down special conditions for the publication of the abstract.

(2) The designated Contracting States shall be specified in the published European patent application.

(3) If, before the termination of the technical preparations for publication of the European patent application, the claims have been amended pursuant to Rule 86, paragraph 2, the new or amended claims shall be included in the publication in addition to the original claims.

Rule 50

Information about publication

(1) The European Patent Office shall communicate to the applicant the date on which the European Patent Bulletin mentions the publication of the European search report and shall draw his attention in this communication to the provisions of Article 94, paragraphs 2 and 3.

(2) The applicant may not invoke the omission of the communication provided for in paragraph 1. If a later date than the date of the mention of the publication is specified in the communication, the later date shall be the decisive date as regards the time limit for filing the request for examination unless the error is apparent.

Chapter IV

Examination by the Examining Division

Rule 51

Examination procedure

(1) In the communication under Article 96, paragraph 1, the European Patent Office shall give the applicant an opportunity to comment on the European search report and to amend, where appropriate, the description, claims and drawings.

(2) In any communication under Article 96, paragraph 2, the Examining Division shall, where appropriate, invite the applicant to correct the deficiencies noted and to amend the description, claims and drawings.

(3) Any communication under Article 96, paragraph 2, shall contain a reasoned statement covering, where appropriate, all the grounds against the grant of the European patent.

(4) Before the Examining Division decides to grant the European patent, it shall inform the applicant of the text in which it intends to grant it, and shall invite him to pay the fees for grant and printing and to file a translation of the claims in the two official languages of the European Patent Office other than the language of the proceedings within a period to be specified, which may not be less than two months or more than four months. The period shall be extended once by a maximum of two months provided the applicant so requests before it expires. If the applicant pays the fees and files the translation within this period, he shall be deemed to have approved the text intended for grant.

(5) If the applicant, within the period laid down in paragraph 4, requests amendments under Rule 86, paragraph 3, or the correction of errors under Rule 88, he shall, where the claims are amended or corrected, file a translation of the claims as amended or corrected. If the applicant pays the fees and files the translation within this period, he shall be deemed to have approved the grant of the patent as amended or corrected.

(6) If the Examining Division does not consent to an amendment or correction requested under paragraph 5, it shall, before taking a decision, give the applicant an opportunity to submit, within a period to be specified, his observations and any amendments considered necessary by the Examining Division, and, where the claims are amended, a translation of the claims as amended. If the applicant submits such amendments, he shall be deemed to have approved the grant of the patent as amended. If the European patent application is refused, withdrawn or deemed to be withdrawn, the fees for grant and printing, and any claims fees paid under paragraph 7, shall be refunded.

(7) If the European patent application in the text intended for grant comprises more than ten claims, the Examining Division shall invite the applicant to pay claims fees in respect of each additional claim within the period laid down in paragraph 4 unless these fees have already been paid under Rule 31, paragraph 1.

(8) If the fees for grant and printing or the claims fees are not paid in due time or if the translation is not filed in due time, the European patent application shall be deemed to be withdrawn.

(8a) If the designation fees become due after the communication under paragraph 4 has been notified, the mention of the grant of the European patent shall not be published until the designation fees have been paid. The applicant shall be informed accordingly.

(9) If a renewal fee becomes due after the communication under paragraph 4 has been notified and before the next possible date for publication of the mention of the grant of the European patent, the mention shall not be published until the renewal fee has been paid. The applicant shall be informed accordingly.

(10) The communication under paragraph 4 shall indicate the designated Contracting States which require a translation pursuant to Article 65, paragraph 1.

(11) The decision to grant the European patent shall state which text of the European patent application forms the basis for the grant of the European patent.

Rule 52

Grant of the European patent to different applicants

Where different persons are entered in the Register of European Patents as applicants in respect of different Contracting States, the Examining Division shall grant the European patent for each Contracting State to the applicant or applicants registered in respect of that State.

Chapter V

The European patent specification

Rule 53

Technical preparations for publication and form of the specification of the European patent

Rules 48 and 49, paragraphs 1 and 2, shall apply mutatis mutandis to the specification of the European patent. The specification shall also contain an indication of the time limit for opposing the European patent.

Rule 54

Certificate for a European patent

(1) As soon as the specification of the European patent has been published the European Patent Office shall issue to the proprietor of the patent a certificate for a European patent, to which the specification shall be annexed. The certificate shall certify that the patent has been granted, in respect of the invention described in the patent specification, to the person named in the certificate, for the Contracting States designated in the specification.

(2) The proprietor of the patent may request that duplicate copies of the European patent certificate be supplied to him upon payment of an administrative fee.

Part V

IMPLEMENTING REGULATIONS TO PART V OF THE CONVENTION

Rule 55

Content of the notice of opposition

The notice of opposition shall contain:

(a) the name and address of the opponent and the State in which his residence or principal place of business is located, in accordance with the provisions of Rule 26, paragraph 2(c);

(b) the number of the European patent against which opposition is filed, and the name of the proprietor and title of the invention;

(c) a statement of the extent to which the European patent is opposed and of the grounds on which the opposition is based as well as an indication of the facts, evidence and arguments presented in support of these grounds;

(d) if the opponent has appointed a representative, his name and the address of his place of business, in accordance with the provisions of Rule 26, paragraph 2(c).

Rule 56

Rejection of the notice of opposition as inadmissible

(1) If the Opposition Division notes that the notice of opposition does not comply with the provisions of Article 99, paragraph 1, Rule 1, paragraph 1, and Rule 55, sub-paragraph (c), or does not provide sufficient identification of the patent against which opposition has been filed, it shall reject the notice of opposition as inadmissible unless these deficiencies have been remedied before expiry of the opposition period.

(2) If the Opposition Division notes that the notice of opposition does not comply with provisions other than those mentioned in paragraph 1, it shall communicate this to the opponent and shall invite him to remedy the deficiencies noted within such period as it may specify. If the notice of opposition is not corrected in good time the Opposition Division shall reject it as inadmissible.

(3) Any decision to reject a notice of opposition as inadmissible shall be communicated to the proprietor of the patent, together with a copy of the notice.

Rule 57

Preparation of the examination of the opposition

(1) The Opposition Division shall communicate the opposition to the proprietor of the patent and shall invite him to file his observations and to file amendments, where appropriate, to the description, claims and drawings within a period to be fixed by the Opposition Division.

(2) If several notices of opposition have been filed, the Opposition Division shall communicate them to the other opponents at the same time as the communication provided for under paragraph 1.

(3) The observations and any amendments filed by the proprietor of the patent shall be communicated to the other parties concerned who shall be invited by the Opposition Division, if it considers it expedient, to reply within a period to be fixed by the Opposition Division.

(4) In the case of a notice of intervention in opposition proceedings the Opposition Division may dispense with the application of paragraphs 1 to 3.

Rule 57a

Amendment of the European patent

Without prejudice to Rule 87, the description, claims and drawings may be amended, provided that the amendments are occasioned by grounds for opposition specified in Article 100, even if the respective ground has not been invoked by the opponent.

Rule 58

Examination of opposition

(1) All communications issued pursuant to Article 101, paragraph 2, and all replies thereto shall be communicated to all parties.

(2) In any communication to the proprietor of the European patent pursuant to Article 101, paragraph 2, he shall, where appropriate, be invited to file, where necessary, the description, claims and drawings in amended form.

(3) Where necessary, any communication to the proprietor of the European patent pursuant to Article 101, paragraph 2, shall contain a reasoned statement. Where appropriate, this statement shall cover all the grounds against the maintenance of the European patent.

(4) Before the Opposition Division decides on the maintenance of the European patent in the amended form, it shall inform the parties that it intends to maintain the patent as amended and shall invite them to state their observations within a period of two months if they disapprove of the text in which it is intended to maintain the patent.

(5) If disapproval of the text communicated by the Opposition Division is expressed, examination of the opposition may be continued; otherwise, the Opposition Division shall, on expiry of the period referred to in paragraph 4, request the proprietor of the patent to pay, within three months, the fee for the printing of a new specification of the European patent and to file a translation of any amended claims in the two official languages of the European Patent Office other than the language of the proceedings.

(6) If the acts requested under paragraph 5 are not performed in due time they may still be validly performed within two months of notification of a communication pointing out the failure to observe the time limit, provided that within this two-month period a surcharge equal to twice the fee for printing a new specification of the European patent is paid.

(7) The communication of the Opposition Division under paragraph 5 shall indicate the designated Contracting States which require a translation pursuant to Article 65, paragraph 1.

(8) The decision to maintain the European patent as amended shall state which text of the European patent forms the basis for the maintenance thereof.

Rule 59

Requests for documents

Documents referred to by a party to opposition proceedings shall be filed together with the notice of opposition or the written submissions in two copies. If such documents are neither enclosed nor filed in due time upon invitation by the European Patent Office, it may decide not to take into account any arguments based on them.

Rule 60

Continuation of the opposition proceedings by the European Patent Office of its own motion

(1) If the European patent has been surrendered or has lapsed for all the designated States, the opposition proceedings may be continued at the request of the opponent filed within two months as from a notification by the European Patent Office of the surrender or lapse.

(2) In the event of the death or legal incapacity of an opponent, the opposition proceedings may be continued by the European Patent Office of its own motion, even without the participation of the heirs or legal representatives. The same shall apply when the opposition is withdrawn.

Rule 61

Transfer of the European patent

Rule 20 shall apply mutatis mutandis to any transfer of the European patent made during the opposition period or during opposition proceedings.

Rule 61a

Documents in opposition proceedings

Part III, Chapter II, of the Implementing Regulations shall apply mutatis mutandis to documents filed in opposition proceedings.

Rule 62

Form of the new specification of the European patent in opposition proceedings

Rule 49, paragraphs 1 and 2, shall apply mutatis mutandis to the new specification of the European patent.

Rule 62a

New certificate for a European patent

Rule 54 shall apply mutatis mutandis to the new specification of the European patent.

Rule 63

Costs

(1) Apportionment of costs shall be dealt with in the decision on the opposition. Such apportionment shall only take into consideration the expenses necessary to assure proper protection of the rights involved. The costs shall include the remuneration of the representatives of the parties.

(2) A bill of costs, with supporting evidence, shall be attached to the request for the fixing of costs. The request shall only be admissible if the decision in respect of which the fixing of costs is required has become final. Costs may be fixed once their credibility is established.

(3) The request for a decision by the Opposition Division on the awarding of costs by the registry, stating the reasons on which it is based, must be filed in writing to the European Patent Office within one month after the date of notification of the awarding of costs. It shall not be deemed to be filed until the fee for the awarding of costs has been paid.

(4) The Opposition Division shall take a decision on the request referred to in paragraph 3 without oral proceedings.

Part VI

IMPLEMENTING REGULATIONS TO PART VI OF THE CONVENTION

Rule 64

Content of the notice of appeal

The notice of appeal shall contain:

(a) the name and address of the appellant in accordance with the provisions of Rule 26, paragraph 2(c);

(b) a statement identifying the decision which is impugned and the extent to which amendment or cancellation of the decision is requested.

Rule 65

Rejection of the appeal as inadmissible

(1) If the appeal does not comply with Articles 106 to 108 and with Rule 1, paragraph 1, and Rule 64, sub-paragraph (b), the Board of Appeal shall reject it as inadmissible, unless each deficiency has been remedied before the relevant time limit laid down in Article 108 has expired.

(2) If the Board of Appeal notes that the appeal does not comply with the provisions of Rule 64, sub-paragraph (a), it shall communicate this to the appellant and shall invite him to remedy the deficiencies noted within such period as it may specify. If the appeal is not corrected in good time, the Board of Appeal shall reject it as inadmissible.

Rule 66

Examination of appeals

(1) Unless otherwise provided, the provisions relating to proceedings before the department which has made the decision from which the appeal is brought shall be applicable to appeal proceedings mutatis mutandis.

(2) The decision shall be authenticated by the Chairman of the Board of Appeal and by the competent employee of the registry of the Board of Appeal, either by their signature or by any other appropriate means. The decision shall contain:

(a) a statement that it is delivered by the Board of Appeal;

(b) the date when the decision was taken;

(c) the names of the Chairman and of the other members of the Board of Appeal taking part;

(d) the names of the parties and their representatives;

(e) a statement of the issues to be decided;

(f) a summary of the facts;

(g) the reasons;

(h) the order of the Board of Appeal, including, where appropriate, a decision on costs.

Rule 67

Reimbursement of appeal fees

The reimbursement of appeal fees shall be ordered in the event of interlocutory revision or where the Board of Appeal deems an appeal to be allowable, if such reimbursement is equitable by reason of a substantial procedural violation. In the event of interlocutory revision, reimbursement shall be ordered by the department whose decision has been impugned and, in other cases, by the Board of Appeal.

Part VII

IMPLEMENTING REGULATIONS TO PART VII OF THE CONVENTION

Chapter I

Decisions and communications of the European Patent Office

Rule 68

Form of decisions

(1) Where oral proceedings are held before the European Patent Office, the decision may be given orally. Subsequently the decision in writing shall be notified to the parties.

(2) Decisions of the European Patent Office which are open to appeal shall be reasoned and shall be accompanied by a written communication of the possibility of appeal. The communication shall also draw the attention of the parties to the provisions laid down in Articles 106 to 108, the text of which shall be attached. The parties may not invoke the omission of the communication.

Rule 69

Noting of loss of rights

(1) If the European Patent Office notes that the loss of any right results from the Convention, without any decision concerning the refusal of the European patent application or the grant, revocation or maintenance of the European patent, or the taking of evidence, it shall communicate this to the person concerned in accordance with the provisions of Article 119.

(2) If the person concerned considers that the finding of the European Patent Office is inaccurate, he may, within two months after notification of the communication referred to in paragraph 1, apply for a decision on the matter by the European Patent Office. Such decision shall be given only if the European Patent Office does not share the opinion of the person requesting it; otherwise the European Patent Office shall inform the person requesting the decision.

Rule 70

Signature, name, seal

(1) Any decision, communication and notice from the European Patent Office is to be signed by and to state the name of the employee responsible.

(2) Where the documents mentioned in paragraph 1 are produced by the employee responsible using a computer, a seal may replace the signature. Where the documents are produced automatically by a computer the employee's name may also be dispensed with. The same applies to pre-printed notices and communications.

Chapter II

Oral proceedings and taking of evidence

Rule 71

Summons to oral proceedings

(1) The parties shall be summoned to oral proceedings provided for in Article 116 and their attention shall be drawn to paragraph 2 of this Rule. At least two months' notice of the summons shall be given unless the parties agree to a shorter period.

(2) If a party who has been duly summoned to oral proceedings before the European Patent Office does not appear as summoned, the proceedings may continue without him.

Rule 71a

Preparation of oral proceedings

(1) When issuing the summons, the European Patent Office shall draw attention to the points which in its opinion need to be discussed for the purposes of the decision to be taken. At the same time a final date for making written submissions in preparation for the oral proceedings shall be fixed. Rule84 shall not apply. New facts and evidence presented after that date need not be considered, unless admitted on the grounds that the subject of the proceedings has changed.

(2) If the applicant or patent proprietor has been notified of the grounds prejudicing the grant or maintenance of the patent, he may be invited to submit, by the date specified in paragraph1, second sentence, documents which meet the requirements of the Convention. Paragraph1, third and fourth sentences, shall apply mutatis mutandis.

Rule 72

Taking of evidence by the European Patent Office

(1) Where the European Patent Office considers it necessary to hear the oral evidence of parties, witnesses or experts or to carry out an inspection, it shall make a decision to this end, setting out the investigation which it intends to carry out, relevant facts to be proved and the date, time and place of the investigation. If oral evidence of witnesses and experts is requested by a party, the decision of the European Patent Office shall determine the period of time within which the party filing the request must make known to the European Patent Office the names and addresses of the witnesses and experts whom it wishes to be heard.

(2) At least two months' notice of a summons issued to a party, witness or expert to give evidence shall be given unless they agree to a shorter period. The summons shall contain:

(a) an extract from the decision mentioned in paragraph 1, indicating in particular the date, time and place of the investigation ordered and stating the facts regarding which parties, witnesses and experts are to be heard;

(b) the names of the parties to the proceedings and particulars of the rights which the witnesses or experts may invoke under the provisions of Rule 74, paragraphs 2 to 4;

(c) an indication that the party, witness or expert may request to be heard by the competent court of his country of residence and a requirement that he inform the European Patent Office within a time limit to be fixed by the Office whether he is prepared to appear before it.

(3) Before a party, witness or expert may be heard, he shall be informed that the European Patent Office may request the competent court in the country of residence of the person concerned to re-examine his evidence on oath or in an equally binding form.

(4) The parties may attend an investigation and may put relevant questions to the testifying parties, witnesses and experts.

Rule 73

Commissioning of experts

(1) The European Patent Office shall decide in what form the report made by an expert whom it appoints shall be submitted.

(2) The terms of reference of the expert shall include:

(a) a precise description of his task;

(b) the time limit laid down for the submission of the expert report;

(c) the names of the parties to the proceedings;

(d) particulars of the rights which he may invoke under the provisions of Rule 74, paragraphs 2 to 4.

(3) A copy of any written report shall be submitted to the parties.

(4) The parties may object to an expert. The department of the European Patent Office concerned shall decide on the objection.

Rule 74

Costs of taking of evidence

(1) The taking of evidence by the European Patent Office may be made conditional upon deposit with it, by the party who requested the evidence to be taken, of a sum the amount of which shall be fixed by reference to an estimate of the costs.

(2) Witnesses and experts who are summoned by and appear before the European Patent Office shall be entitled to appropriate reimbursement of expenses for travel and subsistence. An advance for these expenses may be granted to them. The first sentence shall apply to witnesses and experts who appear before the European Patent Office without being summoned by it and are heard as witnesses or experts.

(3) Witnesses entitled to reimbursement under paragraph 2 shall also be entitled to appropriate compensation for loss of earnings, and experts to fees for their work. These payments shall be made to the witnesses and experts after they have fulfilled their duties or tasks.

(4) The Administrative Council shall lay down the details governing the implementation of the provisions of paragraphs 2 and 3. Payment of amounts due pursuant to these paragraphs shall be made by the European Patent Office.

Rule 75

Conservation of evidence

(1) On request, the European Patent Office may, without delay, hear oral evidence or conduct inspections, with a view to conserving evidence of facts liable to affect a decision which it may be called upon to take with regard to an existing European patent application or a European patent, where there is reason to fear that it might subsequently become more difficult or even impossible to take evidence. The date on which the measures are to be taken shall be communicated to the applicant for or proprietor of the patent in sufficient time to allow him to attend. He may ask relevant questions.

(2) The request shall contain:

(a) the name and address of the person filing the re-quest and the State in which his residence or principal place of business is located, in accordance with the provisions of Rule 26, paragraph 2(c);

(b) sufficient identification of the European patent application or European patent in question;

(c) the designation of the facts in respect of which evidence is to be taken;

(d) particulars of the way in which evidence is to be taken;

(e) a statement establishing a prima facie case for fearing that it might subsequently become more difficult or impossible to take evidence.

(3) The request shall not be deemed to have been filed until the fee for conservation of evidence has been paid.

(4) The decision on the request and any resulting taking of evidence shall be incumbent upon the department of the European Patent Office required to take the decision liable to be affected by the facts to be established. The provisions of the Convention with regard to the taking of evidence in proceedings before the European Patent Office shall be applicable.

Rule 76

Minutes of oral proceedings and of taking of evidence

(1) Minutes of oral proceedings and of the taking of evidence shall be drawn up containing the essentials of the oral proceedings or of the taking of evidence, the relevant statements made by the parties, the testimony of the parties, witnesses or experts and the result of any inspection.

(2) The minutes of the testimony of a witness, expert or party shall be read out or submitted to him so that he may examine them. It shall be noted in the minutes that this formality has been carried out and that the person who gave the testimony approved the minutes. If his approval is not given, his objections shall be noted.

(3) The minutes shall be authenticated by the employee who drew them up and by the employee who conducted the oral proceedings or taking of evidence, either by their signature or by any other appropriate means.

(4) The parties shall be provided with a copy of the minutes.

Chapter III

Notifications

Rule 77

General provisions on notifications

(1) In proceedings before the European Patent Office, any notification to be made shall take the form either of the original document, a copy thereof certified by, or bearing the seal of, the European Patent Office or a computer print-out bearing such seal. Copies of documents emanating from the parties themselves shall not require such certification.

(2) Notification shall be made:

(a) by post in accordance with Rule 78;

(b) by delivery on the premises of the European Patent Office in accordance with Rule 79;

(c) by public notice in accordance with Rule 80, or

(d) by such technical means of communication as determined by the President of the European Patent Office and under the conditions laid down by him governing their use.

(3) Notification through the central industrial property office of a Contracting State shall be made in accordance with the provisions applicable to the said office in national proceedings.

Rule 78

Notification by post

(1) Decisions incurring a time limit for appeal, summonses and other documents as decided on by the President of the European Patent Office shall be notified by registered letter with advice of delivery. All other notifications by post shall be by registered letter.

(2) Where notification is effected by registered letter, whether or not with advice of delivery, this shall be deemed to be delivered to the addressee on the tenth day following its posting, unless the letter has failed to reach the addressee or has reached him at a later date; in the event of any dispute, it shall be incumbent on the European Patent Office to establish that the letter has reached its destination or to establish the date on which the letter was delivered to the addressee, as the case may be.

(3) Notification by registered letter, whether or not with advice of delivery, shall be deemed to have been effected even if acceptance of the letter has been refused.

(4) To the extent that notification by post is not covered by paragraphs1 to 3, the law of the State on the territory of which the notification is made shall apply.

Rule 79

Notification by delivery by hand

Notification may be effected on the premises of the European Patent Office by delivery by hand of the document to the addressee, who shall on delivery acknowledge its receipt. Notification shall be deemed to have taken place even if the addressee refuses to accept the document or to acknowledge receipt thereof.

Rule 80

Public notification

(1) If the address of the addressee cannot be established, or if notification in accordance with Rule 78, paragraph 1, has proved to be impossible even after a second attempt by the European Patent Office, notification shall be effected by public notice.

(2) The President of the European Patent Office shall determine how the public notice is to be given and the beginning of the period of one month on the expiry of which the document shall be deemed to have been notified.

Rule 81

Notification to representatives

(1) If a representative has been appointed, notifications shall be addressed to him.

(2) If several such representatives have been appointed for a single interested party, notification to any one of them shall be sufficient.

(3) If several interested parties have a common representative, notification of a single document to the common representative shall be sufficient.

Rule 82

Irregularities in the notification

Where a document has reached the addressee, if the European Patent Office is unable to prove that it has been duly notified, or if provisions relating to its notification have not been observed, the document shall be deemed to have been notified on the date established by the European Patent Office as the date of receipt.

Chapter IV

Time limits

Rule 83

Calculation of time limits

(1) Periods shall be laid down in terms of full years, months, weeks or days.

(2) Computation shall start on the day following the day on which the relevant event occurred, the event being either a procedural step or the expiry of another period. Where the procedural step is a notification, the event considered shall be the receipt of the document notified, unless otherwise provided.

(3) When a period is expressed as one year or a certain number of years, it shall expire in the relevant subsequent year in the month having the same name and on the day having the same number as the month and the day on which the said event occurred, provided that if the relevant subsequent month has no day with the same number the period shall expire on the last day of that month.

(4) When a period is expressed as one month or a certain number of months, it shall expire in the relevant subsequent month on the day which has the same number as the day on which the said event occurred, provided that if the relevant subsequent month has no day with the same number the period shall expire on the last day of that month.

(5) When a period is expressed as one week or a certain number of weeks, it shall expire in the relevant subsequent week on the day having the same name as the day on which the said event occurred.

Rule 84

Duration of time limits

Where the Convention or these Implementing Regulations specify a period to be determined by the European Patent Office, such period shall be not less than two months nor more than four months; in certain special circumstances may it be up to six months. In certain special cases, the period may be extended upon request, presented before the expiry of such period.

Rule 84a

Late receipt of documents

(1) A document received late at the European Patent Office shall be deemed to have been received in due time if it was posted, or delivered to a recognized delivery service, in due time before the expiry of the time limit in accordance with the conditions laid down by the President of the European Patent Office, unless the document was received later than three months after expiry of the time limit.

(2) Paragraph 1 shall apply mutatis mutandis to the time limits provided for in the Convention where transactions are carried out with the competent authority in accordance with Article 75, paragraph 1(b) or paragraph 2(b).

Rule 85

Extension of time limits

(1) If a time limit expires on a day on which one of the filing offices of the European Patent Office in the sense of Article 75, paragraph 1(a) is not open for receipt of documents or on which, for reasons other than those referred to in paragraph 2, ordinary mail is not delivered there, the time limit shall extend until the first day thereafter on which all the filing offices are open for receipt of documents and on which ordinary mail is delivered.

(2) If a time limit expires on a day on which there is a general interruption or subsequent dislocation in the delivery of mail in a Contracting State or between a Contracting State and the European Patent Office, the time limit shall extend to the first day following the end of the period of interruption or dislocation for parties resident in the State concerned or who have appointed representatives with a place of business in that State. The first sentence shall apply mutatis mutandis to the period referred to in Article 77, paragraph 5. In the case where the State concerned is the State in which the European Patent Office is located, this provision shall apply to all parties. The duration of the above-mentioned period shall be as stated by the President of the European Patent Office.

(3) Paragraphs1 and 2 shall apply mutatis mutandis to the time limits provided for in the Convention in the case of transactions carried out with the competent authority in accordance with Article 75, paragraph 1(b) or paragraph 2(b).

(4) If an exceptional occurrence such as a natural disaster or strike interrupts or dislocates the proper functioning of the European Patent Office so that any communication from the Office to parties concerning the expiry of a time limit is delayed, acts to be completed within such a time limit may still be validly completed within one month after the notification of the delayed communication. The date of commencement and the end of any such interruption or dislocation shall be as stated by the President of the European Patent Office.

(5) Without prejudice to paragraphs 1 to 4, evidence may be offered that on any of the ten days preceding the day of expiration of a time limit the mail service was interrupted or subsequently dislocated on account of war, revolution, civil disorder, strike, natural calamity, or other like reason, in the locality where the party or his representative resides or has his place of business or is staying. If such circumstances are proven to the satisfaction of the European Patent Office, a document received late shall be deemed to have been received in due time provided that the mailing has been effected within five days after the mail service was resumed.

Rule 85a

Period of grace for payment of fees

(1) If the filing fee, the search fee or a designation fee has not been paid within the time limits provided for in Article 78, paragraph 2, Article 79, paragraph 2, Rule 15, paragraph 2, or Rule 25, paragraph 2, it may still be validly paid within a period of grace of one month from notification of a communication pointing out the failure to observe the time limit, provided that within this period a surcharge is paid.

(2) Designation fees in respect of which the applicant has dispensed with notification under paragraph 1 may still be validly paid within a period of grace of two months of expiry of the normal time limits referred to in paragraph 1, provided that within this period a surcharge is paid.

Rule 85b

Period of grace for the filing of the request for examination

If the request for examination has not been filed within the time limit provided for in Article 94, paragraph 2, it may still be validly filed within a period of grace of one month from notification of a communication pointing out the failure to observe the time limit, provided that within this period a surcharge is paid.

Chapter V

Amendments and corrections

Rule 86

Amendment of the European patent application

(1) Before receiving the European search report the applicant may not amend the description, claims or drawings of a European patent application except where otherwise provided.

(2) After receiving the European search report and before receipt of the first communication from the Examining Division, the applicant may, of his own volition, amend the description, claims and drawings.

(3) After receipt of the first communication from the Examining Division the applicant may, of his own volition, amend once the description, claims and drawings provided that the amendment is filed at the same time as the reply to the communication. No further amendment may be made without the consent of the Examining Division.

(4) Amended claims may not relate to unsearched subject-matter which does not combine with the originally claimed invention or group of inventions to form a single general inventive concept.

Rule 87

Different claims, description and drawings for different States

If the European Patent Office notes that, in respect of one or some of the designated Contracting States, the content of an earlier European patent application forms part of the state of the art pursuant to Article 54, paragraphs 3 and 4, or if it is informed of the existence of a prior right under Article139, paragraph 2, the European patent application or European patent may contain for such State or States claims and, if the European Patent Office considers it necessary, a description and drawings which are different from those for the other designated Contracting States.

Rule 88

Correction of errors in documents filed with the European Patent Office

Linguistic errors, errors of transcription and mistakes in any document filed with the European Patent Office may be corrected on request. How ever, if the request for such correction concerns a description, claims or drawings, the correction must be obvious in the sense that it is immediately evident that nothing else would have been intended than what is offered as the correction.

Rule 89

Correction of errors in decisions

In decisions of the European Patent Office, only linguistic errors, errors of transcription and obvious mistakes may be corrected.

Chapter VI

Interruption of proceedings

Rule 90

Interruption of proceedings

(1) Proceedings before the European Patent Office shall be interrupted:

(a) in the event of the death or legal incapacity of the applicant for or proprietor of a European patent or of the person authorized by national law to act on his behalf. To the extent that the above events do not affect the authorisation of a representative appointed under Article 134, proceedings shall be interrupted only on application by such representative;

(b) in the event of the applicant for or proprietor of a European patent, as a result of some action taken against his property, being prevented by legal reasons from continuing the proceedings before the European Patent Office;

(c) in the event of the death or legal incapacity of the representative of an applicant for or proprietor of a European patent or of his being prevented for legal reasons resulting from action taken against his property from continuing the proceedings before the European Patent Office.

(2) When, in the cases referred to in paragraph 1(a) and (b), the European Patent Office has been informed of the identity of the person authorized to continue the proceedings before the European Patent Office, the European Patent Office shall communicate to such person and to any interested third party that the proceedings shall be resumed as from a date to be fixed by the European Patent Office.

(3) In the case referred to in paragraph 1(c), the proceedings shall be resumed when the European Patent Office has been informed of the appointment of a new representative of the applicant or when the European Patent Office has notified to the other parties the communication of the appointment of a new representative of the proprietor of the patent. If, three months after the beginning of the interruption of the proceedings, the European Patent Office has not been informed of the appointment of a new representative, it shall communicate to the applicant for or proprietor of the patent:

(a) where Article 133, paragraph 2, is applicable, that the European patent application will be deemed to be withdrawn or the European patent will be revoked if the information is not submitted within two months after this communication is notified, or

(b) where Article 133, paragraph 2, is not applicable, that the proceedings will be resumed with the applicant for or proprietor of the patent as from the date on which this communication is notified.

(4) The time limits, other than the time limit for making a request for examination and the time limit for paying the renewal fees, in force as regards the applicant for or proprietor of the patent at the date of interruption of the proceedings, shall begin again as from the day on which the proceedings are resumed. If such date is less than two months before the end of the period within which the request for examination must be filed, such a request may be filed up to the end of two months after such date.

Chapter VII

Waiving of enforced recovery procedures

Rule 91

Waiving of enforced recovery procedures

The President of the European Patent Office may waive action for the enforced recovery of any sum due if the sum to be recovered is minimal or if such recovery is too uncertain.

Chapter VIII

Information to the public

Rule 92

Entries in the Register of European Patents

(1) The Register of European Patents shall contain the following entries:

(a) number of the European patent application;

(b) date of filing of the European patent application;

(c) title of the invention;

(d) classification code given to the European patent application;

(e) the Contracting States designated;

(f) family name, given names, address and the State in which the residence or principal place of business of the applicant for or proprietor of the European patent is located;

(g) family name, given names and address of the inventor designated by the applicant for or proprietor of the patent, unless he has waived his right to be mentioned under Rule18, paragraph1;

(h) family name, given names and address of the place of business of the representative of the applicant for or proprietor of the patent referred to in Article 134; in the case of several representatives only the family name, given names and address of the place of business of the representative first named, followed by the words "and others", shall be entered; however, in the case of an association referred to in Rule 101, paragraph 9, only the name and address of the association shall be entered;

(i) priority data (date, State and file number of the previous application);

(j) in the event of a division of the European patent application, the numbers of the European divisional applications;

(k) in the case of European divisional applications and a new European patent application under Article 61, paragraph 1(b), the information referred to under sub-paragraphs (a), (b) and (i) with regard to the earlier European patent application;

(l) date of publication of the European patent application and where appropriate date of the separate publication of the European search report;

(m) date of filing of the request for examination;

(n) date on which the European patent application is refused, withdrawn or deemed to be withdrawn;

(o) date of publication of the mention of the grant of the European patent;

(p) date of lapse of the European patent in a Contracting State during the opposition period and, where appropriate, pending a final decision on opposition;

(q) date of filing opposition;

(r) date and purport of the decision on opposition;

(s) dates of suspension and resumption of proceedings in the cases referred to in Rule 13;

(t) dates of interruption and resumption of proceedings in the case referred to in Rule 90;

(u) date of re-establishment of rights provided that an entry has been made in accordance with sub-paragraph (n) or sub-paragraph (r);

(v) the filing of a request to the European Patent Office pursuant to Article 135;

(w) rights and transfer of such rights over a European patent application or European patent where these are recorded pursuant to these Implementing Regulations.

(2) The President of the European Patent Office may decide that entries other than those referred to in paragraph 1 shall be made in the Register of European Patents.

(3) Extracts from the Register of European Patents shall be delivered on request on payment of an administrative fee.

Rule 93

Parts of the file not for inspection

The parts of the file which shall be excluded from inspection pursuant to Article 128, paragraph 4, shall be:

(a) the documents relating to the exclusion of or objections to members of the Boards of Appeal or of the Enlarged Board of Appeal;

(b) draft decisions and opinions, and all other documents, used for the preparation of decisions and opinions, which are not communicated to the parties;

(c) the designation of the inventor, if he has waived his right to be mentioned under Rule18, paragraph1;

(d) any other document excluded from inspection by the President of the European Patent Office on the ground that such inspection would not serve the purpose of informing the public about the European patent application or the resulting patent.

Rule 94

Procedures for the inspection of files

(1) Inspection of the files of European patent applications and patents shall either be of the original document, or of copies thereof, or of technical means of storage if the files are stored in this way.

(2) The President of the European Patent Office shall determine all file-inspection arrangements, including the circumstances in which an administrative fee is payable.

Rule 95

Communication of information contained in the files

Subject to the restrictions provided for in Article 128, paragraphs 1 to 4, and in Rule 93, the European Patent Office may, upon request, communicate information concerning any file of a European patent application or European patent subject to the payment of an administrative fee. However, the European Patent Office may require the exercise of the option to obtain inspection of the file itself should it deem this to be appropriate in view of the quantity of information to be supplied.

Rule 95a

Constitution, maintenance and preservation of files

(1) The European Patent Office shall constitute, maintain and preserve files relating to all European patent applications and patents.

(2) The President of the European Patent Office shall determine the form in which the files relating to European patent applications and patents shall be constituted, maintained and preserved.

(3) Documents incorporated in an electronic file shall be considered to be originals.

(4) Files relating to European patent applications and patents shall be preserved for at least five years from the end of the year in which:

(a) the application is refused or withdrawn or is deemed to be withdrawn;

(b) the patent is revoked pursuant to opposition proceedings; or

(c) the patent or the extended term or corresponding protection under Article 63, paragraph 2, lapses in the last of the designated States.

(5) Without prejudice to paragraph 4, files relating to European patent applications which have given rise to divisional applications under Article 76 or new applications under Article61, paragraph 1(b), shall be preserved for at least the same period as the files relating to any one of these last applications. The same shall apply to files relating to any resulting European patents.

Rule 96

Additional publications by the European Patent Office

(1) The President of the European Patent Office may provide that, and in what form, the data referred to in Article 128, paragraph 5, shall be communicated to third parties or published.

(2) The President of the European Patent Office may provide for the publication of new or amended claims received after the time mentioned in Rule 49, paragraph 3, the form of such publication and the entry in the European Patent Bulletin of particulars concerning such claims.

Chapter IX

Legal and administrative co-operation

Rule 97

Communications between the European Patent Office and the authorities of the Contracting States

(1) Communications between the European Patent Office and the central industrial property offices of the Contracting States which arise out of the application of the Convention shall be effected directly between these authorities. Communications between the European Patent Office and the courts or other authorities of the Contracting States may be effected through the intermediary of the above central industrial property offices.

(2) Expenditure in respect of communications under paragraph 1 shall be chargeable to the authority making the communications, which shall be exempt from fees.

Rule 98

Inspection of files by or via courts or authorities of the Contracting States

(1) Inspection of the files of European patent applications or of European patents by courts or authorities of the Contracting States shall be of the original documents or of copies thereof; Rule 94 shall not apply.

(2) Courts or Public Prosecutors' Offices of the Contracting States may, in the course of their proceedings, communicate to third parties files or copies thereof transmitted to them by the European Patent Office. Such communications shall be effected in accordance with the conditions laid down in Article 128; they shall not incur the payment of the administrative fee.

(3) The European Patent Office shall, at the time of transmission of the files or copies thereof to the courts or Public Prosecutors' Offices of the Contracting States, indicate such restrictions as may, under Article 128, paragraphs 1 and 4, be applicable to the communication to third parties of files concerning a European patent application or a European patent.

Rule 99

Procedure for letters rogatory

(1) Each Contracting State shall designate a central authority which will undertake to receive letters rogatory issued by the European Patent Office and to transmit them to the authority competent to execute them.

(2) The European Patent Office shall draw up letters rogatory in the language of the competent authority or shall attach to such letters rogatory a translation into the language of that authority.

(3) Subject to the provisions of paragraphs 5 and 6, the competent authority shall apply its own law as to the procedures to be followed in executing such requests. In particular, it shall apply appropriate measures of compulsion in accordance with its own law.

(4) If the authority to which the letters rogatory are transmitted is not competent to execute them, the letters rogatory shall be sent forthwith to the central authority referred to in paragraph 1. That authority shall transmit the letters rogatory either to the competent authority in that State, or to the European Patent Office where no authority is competent in that State.

(5) The European Patent Office shall be informed of the time when, and the place where, the enquiry or other legal measure is to take place and shall inform the parties, witnesses and experts concerned.

(6) If so requested by the European Patent Office, the competent authority shall permit the attendance of members of the department concerned and allow them to question any person giving evidence either directly or through the competent authority.

(7) The execution of letters rogatory shall not give rise to any reimbursement of fees or costs of any nature. Nevertheless, the State in which letters rogatory are executed has the right to require the Organisation to reimburse any fees paid to experts and interpreters and the costs incurred by the procedure of paragraph 6.

(8) If the law applied by the competent authority obliges the parties to secure evidence and the authority is not able itself to execute the letters rogatory, that authority may, with the consent of the European Patent Office, appoint a suitable person to do so. When seeking the consent of the European Patent Office, the competent authority shall indicate the approximate costs which would result from this procedure. If the European Patent Office gives its consent, the Organisation shall reimburse any costs incurred; without such consent, the Organisation shall not be liable for such costs.

Chapter X

Representation

Rule 100

Appointment of a common representative

(1) If there is more than one applicant and the request for the grant of a European patent does not name a common representative, the applicant first named in the request shall be considered to be the common representative. However, if one of the applicants is obliged to appoint a professional representative this representative shall be considered to be the common representative unless the first named applicant has appointed a professional representative. The same shall apply mutatis mutandis to third parties acting in common in filing notice of opposition or intervention and to joint proprietors of a European patent.

(2) If, during the course of proceedings, transfer is made to more than one person, and such persons have not appointed a common representative, paragraph 1 shall apply. If such application is not possible, the European Patent Office shall require such persons to appoint a common representative within two months. If this request is not complied with, the European Patent Office shall appoint the common representative.

Rule 101

Authorisations

(1) Representatives acting before the European Patent Office shall upon request file a signed authorisation within a period to be specified by the European Patent Office. The President of the European Patent Office shall determine the cases where an authorisation is to be filed. The authorisation may cover one or more European patent applications or European patents and shall be filed in the corresponding number of copies. Where the requirements of Article 133, paragraph 2, have not been satisfied, the same period shall be specified for the notification of the appointment of a representative and for the filing of the authorisation.

(2) A general authorisation enabling a representative to act in respect of all the patent transactions of the party making the authorisation may be filed. A single copy shall be sufficient.

(3) The President of the European Patent Office may determine and publish in the Official Journal of the European Patent Office the form and content of:

(a) an authorisation in so far as it relates to the representation of persons as defined in Article 133, paragraph 2;

(b) a general authorisation.

(4) If the authorisation is not filed in due time, any procedural steps taken by the representative other than the filing of a European patent application shall, without prejudice to any other legal consequences provided for in the Convention, be deemed not to have been taken.

(5) The provisions of paragraphs 1 and 2 shall apply mutatis mutandis to a document withdrawing an authorisation.

(6) Any representative who has ceased to be authorized shall continue to be regarded as the representative until the termination of his authorisation has been communicated to the European Patent Office.

(7) Subject to any provisions to the contrary contained therein, an authorisation shall not terminate vis-à-vis the European Patent Office upon the death of the person who gave it.

(8) If several representatives are appointed by a party, they may, notwithstanding any provisions to the contrary in the notification of their appointment or in the authorisation, act either jointly or singly.

(9) The authorisation of an association of representatives shall be deemed to be authorisation of any representative who can establish that he practises within that association.

Rule 102

Amendment of the list of professional representatives

(1) The entry of a professional representative shall be deleted from the list of professional representatives if he so requests or if, despite repeated reminders, he fails to pay the annual subscription to the Institute of Professional Representatives before the European Patent Office before the end of the year for which the subscription is due.

(2) After the expiry of the transitional period provided for in Article 163, paragraph 1, and without prejudice to any disciplinary measures taken under Article 134, paragraph 8(c), the entry of any professional representative may be deleted automatically in the following cases only:

(a) in the event of the death or legal incapacity of the professional representative;

(b) in the event of the professional representative no longer being a national of one of the Contracting States, unless he was entered on the list during the transitional period or was granted exemption by the President of the European Patent Office in accordance with Article 134, paragraph 6;

(c) in the event of the professional representative no longer having his place of business or employment within the territory of one of the Contracting States.

(3) A person whose entry has been deleted shall, upon request, be re-entered in the list of professional representatives if the conditions for deletion no longer exist.

Part VIII

IMPLEMENTING REGULATIONS TO PART VIII OF THE CONVENTION

Rule 103

Information to the public in the event of conversion

(1) The documents which, in accordance with Article 136, accompany the request for conversion shall be communicated to the public by the central industrial property office under the same conditions and to the same extent as documents relating to national proceedings.

(2) The printed specifications of the national patent resulting from the conversion of a European patent application must mention that application.

Part IX

IMPLEMENTING REGULATIONS TO PART X OF THE CONVENTION

Rule 104

The European Patent Office as a receiving Office

(1) When the European Patent Office acts as a receiving Office under the Cooperation Treaty, the international application shall be filed in English, French or German. It shall be filed in three copies; the same applies to any of the documents referred to in the check list provided for in Rule 3.3(a)(ii) of the Regulations under the Cooperation Treaty except the receipt for the fees paid or the cheque for the payment of fees. The President of the European Patent Office may, however, decide that the international application and any related item shall be filed in fewer than three copies.

(2) If the provisions of paragraph 1, second sentence, are not complied with, the missing copies shall be prepared by the European Patent Office at the expense of the applicant.

(3) If an international application is filed with an authority of a Contracting State for transmittal to the European Patent Office as the receiving Office, the Contracting State must ensure that the application reaches the European Patent Office not later than two weeks before the end of the thirteenth month after filing or, if priority is claimed, after the date of priority.

Rule 105

The European Patent Office as an International Searching Authority or International Preliminary Examining Authority

(1) In the case of Article 17, paragraph 3(a), of the Cooperation Treaty, an additional fee equal to the amount of the search fee shall be payable for each further invention for which an international search is to be carried out.

(2) In the case of Article 34, paragraph 3(a), of the Cooperation Treaty, an additional fee equal to the amount of the preliminary examination fee shall be payable for each further invention for which the international preliminary examination is to be carried out.

(3) Without prejudice to Rules 40.2(e) and 68.3(e) of the Regulations under the Cooperation Treaty, where an additional fee has been paid under protest, the European Patent Office shall review whether the invitation to pay the additional fee was justified and, if it does not so find, shall refund the additional fee. If the European Patent Office after such a review considers the invitation to be justified, it shall inform the applicant accordingly and shall invite him to pay a fee for the examination of the protest ("protest fee"). If the protest fee is paid in due time, the protest shall be referred to the Board of Appeal for a decision.

Rule 106

The national fee

The national fee provided for in Article 158, paragraph 2, shall comprise the following fees:

(a) a national basic fee equal to the filing fee provided for in Article 78, paragraph 2, and

(b) the designation fees provided for in Article 79, paragraph 2.

Rule 107

The European Patent Office as a designated or elected Office — Requirements for entry into the European phase

(1) In the case of an international application as referred to in Article150, paragraph3, the applicant must perform the following acts within a period of thirty-one months from the date of filing of the application or, if priority has been claimed, from the priority date:

(a) supply, where applicable, the translation of the international application required under Article 158, paragraph 2;

(b) specify the application documents, as originally filed or in amended form, on which the European grant procedure is to be based;

(c) pay the national basic fee provided for in Rule 106(a);

(d) pay the designation fees if the time limit specified in Article 79, paragraph 2, has expired earlier;

(e) pay the search fee provided for in Article 157, paragraph 2(b), where a supplementary European search report has to be drawn up;

(f) file the request for examination provided for in Article 94, if the time limit specified in Article94, paragraph 2, has expired earlier;

(g) pay the renewal fee in respect of the third year provided for in Article 86, paragraph 1, if the fee has fallen due earlier under Rule37, paragraph1;

(h) file, where applicable, the certificate of exhibition referred to in Article 55, paragraph 2, and Rule 23.

(2) Where the European Patent Office has drawn up an international preliminary examination report the examination fee shall be reduced as laid down in the Rules relating to Fees. If the report was established on certain parts of the international application in accordance with Article 34, paragraph 3(c), of the Cooperation Treaty, the reduction shall be allowed only if examination is to be performed on the subject-matter covered by the report.

Rule 108

Consequences of non-fulfilment of certain requirements

(1) If either the translation of the international application or the request for examination is not filed in due time, or if the national basic fee or the search fee is not paid in due time, or if no designation fee is paid in due time, the European patent application shall be deemed to be withdrawn.

(2) The designation of any Contracting State in respect of which the designation fee has not been paid in due time shall be deemed to be withdrawn.

(3) If the European Patent Office notes that the application or the designation of a Contracting State is deemed to be withdrawn under paragraph 1 or 2, it shall communicate this to the applicant. Rule 69, paragraph 2, shall apply mutatis mutandis. The loss of rights shall be deemed not to have occurred if, within two months of notification of the communication under sentence1, the omitted act is completed and a surcharge is paid.

Rule 109

Amendment of the application

Without prejudice to Rule86, paragraphs 2 to 4, the application may be amended once, within a non-extendable period of one month as from notification of a communication informing the applicant accordingly. The application as amended shall serve as the basis for any supplementary search which has to be performed under Article157, paragraph2.

Rule 110

Claims incurring fees

Consequence of non-payment

(1) If the application documents on which the European grant procedure is to be based comprise more than ten claims, a claims fee shall be payable for the eleventh and each subsequent claim within the period provided for in Rule107, paragraph1.

(2) Any claims fees not paid in due time may still be validly paid within a non-extendable period of grace of one month as from notification of a communication pointing out the failure to pay. If within this period amended claims are filed, the claims fees due shall be computed on the basis of such amended claims.

(3) Any claims fees paid within the period provided for in paragraph 1 and which are in excess of those due under paragraph2, second sentence, shall be refunded.

(4) Where a claims fee is not paid in due time, the claim concerned shall be deemed to be abandoned.

Rule 111

Examination of certain formal requirements by the European Patent Office

(1) If the data concerning the inventor prescribed in Rule17, paragraph1, have not yet been submitted at the expiry of the period provided for in Rule107, paragraph 1, the European Patent Office shall invite the applicant to furnish the data within such period as it shall specify.

(2) Where the priority of an earlier application is claimed and the file number or copy provided for in Article88, paragraph 1, and Rule 38, paragraphs 1 to 3, have not yet been submitted at the expiry of the period provided for in Rule 107, paragraph 1, the European Patent Office shall invite the applicant to furnish the number or copy of the earlier application within such period as it shall specify. Rule 38, paragraph4, shall apply.

(3) If at the expiry of the period provided for in Rule 107, paragraph 1, a sequence listing as prescribed in Rule 5.2 of the Regulations under the Cooperation Treaty is not available to the European Patent Office, or does not conform to the prescribed standard, or has not been filed on the prescribed data carrier, the applicant shall be invited to file a sequence listing conforming to the prescribed standard or on the prescribed data carrier within such period as the European Patent Office shall specify.

Rule 112

Consideration of unity by the European Patent Office

If only a part of the international application has been searched by the International Searching Authority because that Authority considered that the application did not comply with the requirement of unity of invention, and the applicant did not pay all additional fees according to Article 17, paragraph 3(a), of the Cooperation Treaty within the prescribed time limit, the European Patent Office shall consider whether the application complies with the requirement of unity of invention. If the European Patent Office considers that this is not the case, it shall inform the applicant that a European search report can be obtained in respect of those parts of the international application which have not been searched if a search fee is paid for each invention involved within a period specified by the European Patent Office which may not be shorter than two weeks and may not exceed six weeks. The Search Division shall draw up a European search report for those parts of the international application which relate to inventions in respect of which search fees have been paid. Rule 46, paragraph 2, shall apply mutatis mutandis.

AGREEMENT ON THE APPLICATION OF ARTICLE 65 OF THE CONVENTION ON THE GRANT OF EUROPEAN PATENTS

The States parties to this Agreement,

IN THEIR CAPACITY as Contracting States to the Convention on the Grant of European Patents (European Patent Convention) of 5 October 1973,

REAFFIRMING their desire to strengthen co-operation between the States of Europe in respect of the protection of inventions,

HAVING REGARD to Article 65 of the European Patent Convention,

RECOGNISING the importance of the objective to reduce the costs relating to the translation of European patents,

STRESSING the need for widespread adherence to that objective,

DETERMINED to contribute effectively to such cost reduction,

HAVE AGREED ON THE FOLLOWING PROVISIONS:

Article 1

Dispensation with translation requirements

(1) Any State party to this Agreement having an official language in common with one of the official languages of the European Patent Office shall dispense with the translation requirements provided for in Article 65, paragraph 1, of the European Patent Convention.

(2) Any State party to this Agreement having no official language in common with one of the official languages of the European Patent Office shall dispense with the translation requirements provided for in Article 65, paragraph 1, of the European Patent Convention, if the European patent has been granted in the official language of the European Patent Office prescribed by that State, or translated into that language and supplied under the conditions provided for in Article 65, paragraph 1, of the European Patent Convention.

(3) The States referred to in paragraph 2 shall continue to have the right to require that a translation of the claims into one of their official languages be supplied under the conditions provided for in Article 65, paragraph 1, of the European Patent Convention.

(4) Nothing in this Agreement shall be construed as restricting the right of the States parties to this Agreement to dispense with any translation requirement or to apply more liberal translation requirements than those referred to in paragraphs 2 and 3.

Article 2

Translations in case of dispute

Nothing in this Agreement shall be construed as restricting the right of the States parties to this Agreement to prescribe that, in the case of a dispute relating to a European patent, the patent proprietor, at his own expense,

(a) shall supply, at the request of an alleged infringer, a full translation into an official language of the State in which the alleged infringement took place,

(b) shall supply, at the request of the competent court or quasi judicial authority in the course of legal proceedings, a full translation into an official language of the State concerned.

Article 3

Signature — Ratification

(1) This Agreement shall be open for signature by any Contracting State to the European Patent Convention until 30 June 2001.

(2) This Agreement shall be subject to ratification. Instruments of ratification shall be deposited with the Government of the Federal Republic of Germany.

Article 4

Accession

This Agreement shall, on expiry of the term for signature mentioned in Article 3, paragraph 1, be open to accession by any Contracting State to the European Patent Convention and any State which is entitled to accede to that Convention. Instruments of accession shall be deposited with the Government of the Federal Republic of Germany.

Article 5

Prohibition of reservations

No State party to this Agreement may make reservations thereto.

Article 6

Entry into force

(1) This Agreement shall enter into force on the first day of the fourth month after the deposit of the last instrument of ratification or accession by eight Contracting States to the European Patent Convention, including the three States in which the most European patents took effect in 1999.

(2) Any ratification or accession after the entry into force of this Agreement shall take effect on the first day of the fourth month after the deposit of the instrument of ratification or accession.

Article 7

Duration of the Agreement

This Agreement shall be concluded for an unlimited duration.

Article 8

Denunciation

Any State party to this Agreement may denounce it at any time once it has been in force for three years. Notification of denunciation shall be given to the Government of the Federal Republic of Germany. The denunciation shall take effect one year after the date of receipt of such notification. No rights acquired pursuant to this Agreement before the denunciation took effect shall thereby be impaired.

Article 9

Scope

This Agreement shall apply to European patents in respect of which the mention of grant was published in the European Patent Bulletin after the Agreement entered into force for the State concerned.

Article 10

Languages of the Agreement

This Agreement, drawn up in a single original in the English, French and German languages shall be deposited with the Government of the Federal Republic of Germany, the three texts being equally authentic.

Article 11

Transmissions and notifications

(1) The Government of the Federal Republic of Germany shall draw up certified true copies of this Agreement and shall transmit them to the Governments of all signatory or acceding States.

(2) The Government of the Federal Republic of Germany shall notify to the Governments of the States referred to in paragraph 1:

(a) any signature;

(b) the deposit of any instrument of ratification or accession;

(c) the date of entry into force of this Agreement;

(d) any denunciation received pursuant to Article 8 and the date on which it will take effect.

(3) The Government of the Federal Republic of Germany shall register this Agreement with the Secretariat of the United Nations.

In WITNESS WHEREOF, the Plenipotentiaries authorised thereto, having presented their Full Powers, found to be in good and due form, have signed this Agreement.

Done at London on 17 October 2000, in one original, in English, French and Germany, each text being equally authentic.

ACT REVISING THE CONVENTION ON THE GRANT OF EUROPEAN PATENTS (EUROPEAN PATENT CONVENTION ) OF 5 OCTOBER 1973,
LAST REVISED AT 17 DECEMBER 1991

PREAMBLE

THE CONTRACTING STATES TO THE EUROPEAN PATENT CONVENTION,

CONSIDERING that the co-operation of the countries of Europe on the basis of the European Patent Convention and the single procedure for the grant of patents thereby established renders a significant contribution to the legal and economic integration of Europe,

WISHING to promote innovation and economic growth in Europe still more effectively by laying foundations for the further development of the European patent system,

DESIRING, in the light of the increasingly international character of the patent system, to adapt the European Patent Convention to the technological and legal developments which have occurred since it was concluded,

HAVE AGREED AS FOLLOWS:

Article 1

Amendment of the European Patent Convention

The European Patent Convention shall be amended as follows:

1. The following new Article 4a shall be inserted after Article 4:

Article 4a

Conference of ministers of the Contracting States

A conference of ministers of the Contracting States responsible for patent matters shall meet at least every five years to discuss issues pertaining to the Organisation and to the European patent system.

2. Article 11 shall be amended to read as follows:

Article 11

Appointment of senior employees

(1) The President of the European Patent Office shall be appointed by the Administrative Council.

(2) The Vice-Presidents shall be appointed by the Administrative Council after the President of the European Patent Office has been consulted.

(3) The members, including the Chairmen, of the Boards of Appeal and of the Enlarged Board of Appeal shall be appointed by the Administrative Council on a proposal from the President of the European Patent Office. They may be re-appointed by the Administrative Council after the President of the European Patent Office has been consulted.

(4) The Administrative Council shall exercise disciplinary authority over the employees referred to in paragraphs 1 to3.

(5) The Administrative Council, after consulting the President of the European Patent Office, may also appoint as members of the Enlarged Board of Appeal legally qualified members of the national courts or quasi-judicial authorities of the Contracting States, who may continue their judicial activities at the national level. They shall be appointed for a term of three years and may be reappointed.

3. Article 14 shall be amended to read as follows:

Article 14

Languages of the European Patent Office, European patent applications and other documents

(1) The official languages of the European Patent Office shall be English, French and German.

(2) A European patent application shall be filed in one of the official languages or, if filed in any other language, translated into one of the official languages in accordance with the Implementing Regulations. Throughout the proceedings before the European Patent Office, such translation may be brought into conformity with the application as filed. If a required translation is not filed in due time, the application shall be deemed to be withdrawn.

(3) The official language of the European Patent Office in which the European patent application is filed or into which it is translated shall be used as the language of the proceedings in all proceedings before the European Patent Office, unless otherwise provided in the Implementing Regulations.

(4) Natural or legal persons having their residence or principal place of business within a Contracting State having a language other than English, French or German as an official language, and nationals of that State who are resident abroad, may file documents which have to be filed within a time limit in an official language of that State. They shall however file a translation in an official language of the European Patent Office in accordance with the Implementing Regulations. If any document, other than those documents making up the European patent application, is not filed in the prescribed language, or if any required translation is not filed in due time, the document shall be deemed not to have been filed.

(5) European patent applications shall be published in the language of the proceedings.

(6) Specifications of European patents shall be published in the language of the proceedings and shall include a translation of the claims in the two other official languages of the European Patent Office.

(7) There shall be published in the three official languages of the European Patent Office:

(a) the European Patent Bulletin;

(b) the Official Journal of the European Patent Office.

(8) Entries in the European Patent Register shall be made in the three official languages of the European Patent Office. In cases of doubt, the entry in the language of the proceedings shall be authentic.

4. Article 16 shall be amended to read as follows:

Article 16

Receiving Section

The Receiving Section shall be responsible for the examination on filing and the examination as to formal requirements of European patent applications.

5. Article 17 shall be amended to read as follows:

Article 17

Search Divisions

The Search Divisions shall be responsible for drawing up European search reports.

6. Article 18 shall be amended to read as follows:

Article 18

Examining Divisions

(1) The Examining Divisions shall be responsible for the examination of European patent applications.

(2) An Examining Division shall consist of three technical examiners. However, the examination of a European patent application prior to a decision on it shall, as a general rule, be entrusted to one member of the Division. Oral proceedings shall be before the Examining Division itself. If the Examining Division considers that the nature of the decision so requires, it shall be enlarged by the addition of a legally qualified examiner. In the event of parity of votes, the vote of the Chairman of the Division shall be decisive.

7. Article 21 shall be amended to read as follows:

Article 21

Boards of Appeal

(1) The Boards of Appeal shall be responsible for the examination of appeals from the decisions of the Receiving Section, Examining Divisions, Opposition Divisions and of the Legal Division.

(2) For appeals from a decision of the Receiving Section or the Legal Division, a Board of Appeal shall consist of three legally qualified members.

(3) For appeals from a decision of an Examining Division, a Board of Appeal shall consist of:

(a) two technically qualified members and one legally qualified member, when the decision concerns the refusal of a European patent application or the grant, limitation or revocation of a European patent and was taken by an Examining Division consisting of less than four members;

(b) three technically qualified members and two legally qualified members, when the decision was taken by an Examining Division consisting of four members or when the Board of Appeal considers that the nature of the appeal so requires;

(c) three legally qualified members in all other cases.

(4) For appeals from a decision of an Opposition Division, a Board of Appeal shall consist of:

(a) two technically qualified members and one legally qualified member, when the decision was taken by an Opposition Division consisting of three members;

(b) three technically qualified members and two legally qualified members, when the decision was taken by an Opposition Division consisting of four members or when the Board of Appeal considers that the nature of the appeal so requires.

8. Article 22 shall be amended to read as follows:

Article 22

Enlarged Board of Appeal

(1) The Enlarged Board of Appeal shall be responsible for:

(a) deciding points of law referred to it by Boards of Appeal;

(b) giving opinions on points of law referred to it by the President of the European Patent Office under Article112;

(c) deciding on petitions for review of decisions of the Boards of Appeal under Article 112a.

(2) In proceedings under paragraph 1(a) and (b), the Enlarged Board of Appeal shall consist of five legally qualified and two technically qualified members. In proceedings under paragraph 1(c), the Enlarged Board of Appeal shall consist of three or five members as laid down in the Implementing Regulations. In all proceedings a legally qualified member shall be the Chairman.

9. Article 23 shall be amended to read as follows:

Article 23

Independence of the members of the Boards

(1) The members of the Enlarged Board of Appeal and of the Boards of Appeal shall be appointed for a term of five years and may not be removed from office during this term, except if there are serious grounds for such removal and if the Administrative Council, on a proposal from the Enlarged Board of Appeal, takes a decision to this effect. Notwithstanding sentence 1, the term of office of members of the Boards shall end if they resign or are retired in accordance with the Service Regulations for permanent employees of the European Patent Office.

(2) The members of the Boards may not be members of the Receiving Section, Examining Divisions, Opposition Divisions or of the Legal Division.

(3) In their decisions the members of the Boards shall not be bound by any instructions and shall comply only with the provisions of this Convention.

(4) The Rules of Procedure of the Boards of Appeal and the Enlarged Board of Appeal shall be adopted in accordance with the Implementing Regulations. They shall be subject to the approval of the Administrative Council.

10. Article 33 shall be amended to read as follows:

Article 33

Competence of the Administrative Council in certain cases

(1) The Administrative Council shall be competent to amend the following provisions:

(a) the time limits laid down in this Convention;

(b) Parts II to VIII and Part X of this Convention, to bring them into line with an international treaty relating to patents or European Community legislation relating to patents;

(c) the Implementing Regulations.

(2) The Administrative Council shall be competent, in conformity with this Convention, to adopt or amend the following provisions:

(a) the Financial Regulations;

(b) the Service Regulations for permanent employees and the conditions of employment of other employees of the European Patent Office, the salary scales of the said permanent and other employees, and also the nature and rules for the grant of any supplementary benefits;

(c) the Pension Scheme Regulations and any appropriate increases in existing pensions to correspond to increases in salaries;

(d) the Rules relating to Fees;

(e) its Rules of Procedure.

(3) Notwithstanding Article 18, paragraph 2, the Administrative Council shall be competent to decide, in the light of experience, that in certain categories of cases Examining Divisions shall consist of one technical examiner. Such decision may be rescinded.

(4) The Administrative Council shall be competent to authorise the President of the European Patent Office to negotiate and, with its approval, to conclude agreements on behalf of the European Patent Organisation with States, with intergovernmental organisations and with documentation centres set up by virtue of agreements with such organisations.

(5) The Administrative Council may not take a decision under paragraph 1(b):

— concerning an international treaty, before the entry into force of that treaty;

— concerning European Community legislation, before its entry into force or, where that legislation provides for a period for its implementation, before the expiry of that period.

11. Article 35 shall be amended to read as follows:

Article 35

Voting rules

(1) The Administrative Council shall take its decisions other than those referred to in paragraphs 2 and 3 by a simple majority of the Contracting States represented and voting.

(2) A majority of three quarters of the votes of the Contracting States represented and voting shall be required for the decisions which the Administrative Council is empowered to take under Article 7, Article 11, paragraph 1, Article 33, paragraphs 1(a) and (c), and 2 to 4, Article 39, paragraph1, Article 40, paragraphs 2 and 4, Article 46, Article134a, Article149a, paragraph 2, Article 152, Article153, paragraph 7, Article 166 and Article 172.

(3) Unanimity of the Contracting States voting shall be required for the decisions which the Administrative Council is empowered to take under Article 33, paragraph1(b). The Administrative Council shall take such decisions only if all the Contracting States are represented. A decision taken on the basis of Article 33, paragraph 1(b), shall not take effect if a Contracting State declares, within twelve months of the date of the decision, that it does not wish to be bound by that decision.

(4) Abstentions shall not be considered as votes.

12. Article 37 shall be amended to read as follows:

Article 37

Budgetary funding

The budget of the Organisation shall be financed:

(a) by the Organisation's own resources;

(b) by payments made by the Contracting States in respect of renewal fees for European patents levied in these States;

(c) where necessary, by special financial contributions made by the Contracting States;

(d) where appropriate, by the revenue provided for in Article 146;

(e) where appropriate, and for tangible assets only, by third-party borrowings secured on land or buildings;

(f) where appropriate, by third-party funding for specific projects.

13. Article 38 shall be amended to read as follows:

Article 38

The Organisation's own resources

The Organisation's own resources shall comprise:

(a) all income from fees and other sources and also the reserves of the Organisation;

(b) the resources of the Pension Reserve Fund, which shall be treated as a special class of asset of the Organisation designed to lend support to the Organisation's pension scheme by providing the appropriate reserves.

14. Article 42 shall be amended to read as follows:

Article 42

Budget

(1) The budget of the Organisation shall be balanced. It shall be drawn up in accordance with the generally accepted accounting principles laid down in the Financial Regulations. If necessary, there may be amending or supplementary budgets.

(2) The budget shall be drawn up in the unit of account fixed in the Financial Regulations.

15. Article 50 shall be amended to read as follows:

Article 50

Financial Regulations

The Financial Regulations shall in particular establish:

(a) the procedure relating to the establishment and implementation of the budget and for the rendering and auditing of accounts;

(b) the method and procedure whereby the payments and contributions provided for in Article 37 and the advances provided for in Article 41 are to be made available to the Organisation by the Contracting States;

(c) the rules concerning the responsibilities of authorising and accounting officers and the arrangements for their supervision;

(d) the rates of interest provided for in Articles 39, 40 and 47;

(e) the method of calculating the contributions payable by virtue of Article146;

(f) the composition of and duties to be assigned to a Budget and Finance Committee which should be set up by the Administrative Council;

(g) the generally accepted accounting principles on which the budget and the annual financial statements shall be based.

16. Article 51 shall be amended to read as follows:

Article 51

Fees

(1) The European Patent Office may levy fees for any official task or procedure carried out under this Convention.

(2) Time limits for the payment of fees other than those fixed by this Convention shall be laid down in the Implementing Regulations.

(3) Where the Implementing Regulations provide that a fee shall be paid, they shall also lay down the consequences of failure to pay such fee in due time.

(4) The Rules relating to Fees shall determine in particular the amounts of the fees and the ways in which they are to be paid.

17. Article 52 shall be amended to read as follows:

Article 52

Patentable inventions

(1) European patents shall be granted for any inventions, in all fields of technology, provided that they are new, involve an inventive step and are susceptible of industrial application.

(2) The following in particular shall not be regarded as inventions within the meaning of paragraph 1:

(a) discoveries, scientific theories and mathematical methods;

(b) aesthetic creations;

(c) schemes, rules and methods for performing mental acts, playing games or doing business, and programs for computers;

(d) presentations of information.

(3) Paragraph 2 shall exclude the patentability of the subject-matter or activities referred to therein only to the extent to which a European patent application or European patent relates to such subject-matter or activities as such.

18. Article 53 shall be amended to read as follows:

Article 53

Exceptions to patentability

European patents shall not be granted in respect of:

(a) inventions the commercial exploitation of which would be contrary to "ordre public" or morality, provided that such exploitation shall not be deemed to be so contrary merely because it is prohibited by law or regulation in some or all of the Contracting States;

(b) plant or animal varieties or essentially biological processes for the production of plants or animals; this provision shall not apply to microbiological processes or the products thereof;

(c) methods for treatment of the human or animal body by surgery or therapy and diagnostic methods practised on the human or animal body; this provision shall not apply to products, in particular substances or compositions, for use in any of these methods.

19. Article 54 shall be amended to read as follows:

Article 54

Novelty

(1) An invention shall be considered to be new if it does not form part of the state of the art.

(2) The state of the art shall be held to comprise everything made available to the public by means of a written or oral description, by use, or in any other way, before the date of filing of the European patent application.

(3) Additionally, the content of European patent applications as filed, of which the dates of filing are prior to the date referred to in paragraph 2 and which were published on or after that date, shall be considered as comprised in the state of the art.

(4) Paragraphs 2 and 3 shall not exclude the patentability of any substance or composition, comprised in the state of the art, for use in a method referred to in Article 53(c), provided that its use for any such method is not comprised in the state of the art.

(5) Paragraphs 2 and 3 shall also not exclude the patentability of any substance or composition referred to in paragraph 4 for any specific use in any method referred to in Article 53(c), provided that such use is not comprised in the state of the art.

20. Article 60 shall be amended to read as follows:

Article 60

Right to a European patent

(1) The right to a European patent shall belong to the inventor or his successor in title. If the inventor is an employee, the right to a European patent shall be determined in accordance with the law of the State in which the employee is mainly employed; if the State in which the employee is mainly employed cannot be determined, the law to be applied shall be that of the State in which the employer has his place of business to which the employee is attached.

(2) If two or more persons have made an invention independently of each other, the right to a European patent therefor shall belong to the person whose European patent application has the earliest date of filing, provided this first application has been published.

(3) For the purposes of proceedings before the European Patent Office, the applicant shall be deemed to be entitled to exercise the right to a European patent.

21. Article 61 shall be amended to read as follows:

Article 61

European patent applications filed by non-entitled persons

(1) If by a final decision it is adjudged that a person other than the applicant is entitled to the grant of the European patent, that person may, in accordance with the Implementing Regulations,

(a) prosecute the European patent application as his own application in place of the applicant,

(b) file a new European patent application in respect of the same invention, or

(c) request that the European patent application be refused.

(2) Article 76, paragraph 1, shall apply mutatis mutandis to a new European patent application filed under paragraph 1(b).

22. Article 65 shall be amended to read as follows:

Article 65

Translation of the European patent

(1) Any Contracting State may, if the European patent as granted, amended or limited by the European Patent Office is not drawn up in one of its official languages, prescribe that the proprietor of the patent shall supply to its central industrial property office a translation of the patent as granted, amended or limited in one of its official languages at his option or, where that State has prescribed the use of one specific official language, in that language. The period for supplying the translation shall end three months after the date on which the mention of the grant, maintenance in amended form or limitation of the European patent is published in the European Patent Bulletin, unless the State concerned prescribes a longer period.

(2) Any Contracting State which has adopted provisions pursuant to paragraph 1 may prescribe that the proprietor of the patent must pay all or part of the costs of publication of such translation within a period laid down by that State.

(3) Any Contracting State may prescribe that in the event of failure to observe the provisions adopted in accordance with paragraphs 1 and 2, the European patent shall be deemed to be void ab initio in that State.

23. Article 67 shall be amended to read as follows:

Article 67

Rights conferred by a European patent application after publication

(1) A European patent application shall, from the date of its publication, provisionally confer upon the applicant such protection as is conferred by Article 64, in the Contracting States designated in the application.

(2) Any Contracting State may prescribe that a European patent application shall not confer such protection as is conferred by Article 64. However, the protection attached to the publication of the European patent application may not be less than that which the laws of the State concerned attach to the compulsory publication of unexamined national patent applications.

In any event, every State shall ensure at least that, from the date of publication of a European patent application, the applicant can claim compensation reasonable in the circumstances from any person who has used the invention in the said State in circumstances where that person would be liable under national law for infringement of a national patent.

(3) Any Contracting State which does not have as an official language the language of the proceedings may prescribe that provisional protection in accordance with paragraphs 1 and 2 above shall not be effective until such time as a translation of the claims in one of its official languages at the option of the applicant or, where that State has prescribed the use of one specific official language, in that language:

(a) has been made available to the public in the manner prescribed by national law, or

(b) has been communicated to the person using the invention in the said State.

(4) The European patent application shall be deemed never to have had the effects set out in paragraphs 1 and 2 above when it has been withdrawn, deemed to be withdrawn or finally refused. The same shall apply in respect of the effects of the European patent application in a Contracting State the designation of which is withdrawn or deemed to be withdrawn.

24. Article 68 shall be amended to read as follows:

Article 68

Effect of revocation or limitation of the European patent

The European patent application and the resulting patent shall be deemed not to have had, from the outset, the effects specified in Articles 64 and 67, to the extent that the patent has been revoked or limited in opposition, limitation or revocation proceedings.

25. Article 69 shall be amended to read as follows:

Article 69

Extent of protection

(1) The extent of the protection conferred by a European patent or a European patent application shall be determined by the claims. Nevertheless, the description and drawings shall be used to interpret the claims.

(2) For the period up to grant of the European patent, the extent of the protection conferred by the European patent application shall be determined by the claims contained in the application as published. However, the European patent as granted or as amended in opposition, limitation or revocation proceedings shall determine retroactively the protection conferred by the European patent application, in so far as such protection is not thereby extended.

26. Article 70 shall be amended to read as follows:

Article 70

Authentic text of a European patent application or European patent

(1) The text of a European patent application or a European patent in the language of the proceedings shall be the authentic text in any proceedings before the European Patent Office and in any Contracting State.

(2) If, however, the European patent application has been filed in a language which is not an official language of the European Patent Office, that text shall be the application as filed within the meaning of this Convention.

(3) Any Contracting State may prescribe that a translation, as provided for in this Convention, in an official language of that State, shall in that State be regarded as authentic, except for revocation proceedings, in the event of the European patent application or European patent in the language of the translation conferring protection which is narrower than that conferred by it in the language of the proceedings.

(4) Any Contracting State which adopts a provision under paragraph 3:

(a) must allow the applicant for or proprietor of the patent to file a corrected translation of the European patent application or European patent. Such corrected translation shall not have any legal effect until any conditions established by the Contracting State under Article 65, paragraph 2, and Article 67, paragraph 3, have been complied with mutatis mutandis;

(b) may prescribe that any person who, in that State, in good faith is using or has made effective and serious preparations for using an invention the use of which would not constitute infringement of the application or patent in the original translation may, after the corrected translation takes effect, continue such use in the course of his business or for the needs thereof without payment.

27. Article 75 shall be amended to read as follows:

Article 75

Filing of a European patent application

(1) A European patent application may be filed:

(a) at the European Patent Office, or

(b) if the law of a Contracting State so permits, and subject to Article 76, paragraph1, at the central industrial property office or other competent authority of that State. Any application filed in this way shall have the same effect as if it had been filed on the same date at the European Patent Office.

(2) Paragraph 1 shall not preclude the application of legislative or regulatory provisions which, in any Contracting State:

(a) govern inventions which, owing to the nature of their subject-matter, may not be communicated abroad without the prior authorisation of the competent authorities of that State, or

(b) prescribe that any application is to be filed initially with a national authority or make direct filing with another authority subject to prior authorisation.

28. Article 76 shall be amended to read as follows:

Article 76

European divisional applications

(1) Any European divisional application shall be filed directly with the European Patent Office in accordance with the Implementing Regulations. It may be filed only in respect of subject-matter which does not extend beyond the content of the earlier application as filed; in so far as this requirement is complied with, the divisional application shall be deemed to have been filed on the date of filing of the earlier application and shall enjoy any right of priority.

(2) All the Contracting States designated in the earlier application at the time of filing of a European divisional application shall be deemed to be designated in the divisional application.

29. Article 77 shall be amended to read as follows:

Article 77

Forwarding of European patent applications

(1) The central industrial property office of a Contracting State shall forward to the European Patent Office any European patent application filed with it or any other competent authority in that State, in accordance with the Implementing Regulations.

(2) Any European patent application the subject of which has been made secret shall not be forwarded to the European Patent Office.

(3) Any European patent application not forwarded to the European Patent Office in due time shall be deemed to be withdrawn.

30. Article 78 shall be amended to read as follows:

Article 78

Requirements of a European patent application

(1) A European patent application shall contain:

(a) a request for the grant of a European patent;

(b) a description of the invention;

(c) one or more claims;

(d) any drawings referred to in the description or the claims;

(e) an abstract,

and satisfy the conditions laid down in the Implementing Regulations.

(2) A European patent application shall be subject to the payment of the filing fee and the search fee. If the filing fee or the search fee is not paid in due time, the application shall be deemed to be withdrawn.

31. Article 79 shall be amended to read as follows:

Article 79

Designation of Contracting States

(1) All the Contracting States party to this Convention at the time of filing of a European patent application shall be deemed to be designated in the request for grant of a European patent.

(2) The designation of a Contracting State may be subject to the payment of a designation fee.

(3) The designation of a Contracting State may be withdrawn at any time up to the grant of the European patent.

32. Article 80 shall be amended to read as follows:

Article 80

Date of filing

The date of filing of a European patent application shall be the date on which the requirements laid down in the Implementing Regulations are fulfilled.

33. Article 86 shall be amended to read as follows:

Article 86

Renewal fees for a European patent application

(1) Renewal fees for a European patent application shall be paid to the European Patent Office in accordance with the Implementing Regulations. These fees shall be due in respect of the third year and each subsequent year, calculated from the date of filing of the application. If a renewal fee is not paid in due time, the application shall be deemed to be withdrawn.

(2) The obligation to pay renewal fees shall terminate with the payment of the renewal fee due in respect of the year in which the mention of the grant of the European patent is published.

34. Article 87 shall be amended to read as follows:

Article 87

Priority right

(1) Any person who has duly filed, in or for

(a) any State party to the Paris Convention for the Protection of Industrial Property or

(b) any Member of the World Trade Organization,

an application for a patent, a utility model or a utility certificate, or his successor in title, shall enjoy, for the purpose of filing a European patent application in respect of the same invention, a right of priority during a period of twelve months from the date of filing of the first application.

(2) Every filing that is equivalent to a regular national filing under the national law of the State where it was made or under bilateral or multilateral agreements, including this Convention, shall be recognised as giving rise to a right of priority.

(3) By a regular national filing is meant any filing that is sufficient to establish the date on which the application was filed, whatever may be the outcome of the application.

(4) A subsequent application for the same subject-matter as a previous first application and filed in or in respect of the same State shall be considered as the first application for the purposes of determining priority, provided that, at the date of filing the subsequent application, the previous application has been withdrawn, abandoned or refused, without being open to public inspection and without leaving any rights outstanding, and has not served as a basis for claiming a right of priority. The previous application may not thereafter serve as a basis for claiming a right of priority.

(5) If the first filing has been made with an industrial property authority which is not subject to the Paris Convention for the Protection of Industrial Property or the Agreement Establishing the World Trade Organization, paragraphs 1 to 4 shall apply if that authority, according to a communication issued by the President of the European Patent Office, recognises that a first filing made at the European Patent Office gives rise to a right of priority under conditions and with effects equivalent to those laid down in the Paris Convention.

35. Article 88 shall be amended to read as follows:

Article 88

Claiming priority

(1) An applicant desiring to take advantage of the priority of a previous application shall file a declaration of priority and any other document required, in accordance with the Implementing Regulations.

(2) Multiple priorities may be claimed in respect of a European patent application, notwithstanding the fact that they originated in different countries. Where appropriate, multiple priorities may be claimed for any one claim. Where multiple priorities are claimed, time limits which run from the date of priority shall run from the earliest date of priority.

(3) If one or more priorities are claimed in respect of a European patent application, the right of priority shall cover only those elements of the European patent application which are included in the application or applications whose priority is claimed.

(4) If certain elements of the invention for which priority is claimed do not appear among the claims formulated in the previous application, priority may nonetheless be granted, provided that the documents of the previous application as a whole specifically disclose such elements.

36. Article 90 shall be amended to read as follows:

Article 90

Examination on filing and examination as to formal requirements

(1) The European Patent Office shall examine, in accordance with the Implementing Regulations, whether the application satisfies the requirements for the accordance of a date of filing.

(2) If a date of filing cannot be accorded following the examination under paragraph 1, the application shall not be dealt with as a European patent application.

(3) If the European patent application has been accorded a date of filing, the European Patent Office shall examine, in accordance with the Implementing Regulations, whether the requirements in Articles 14, 78 and 81, and, where applicable, Articles 88, paragraph 1, and 133, paragraph 2, as well as any other requirement laid down in the Implementing Regulations, have been satisfied.

(4) Where the European Patent Office in carrying out the examination under paragraphs 1 or 3 notes that there are deficiencies which may be corrected, it shall give the applicant an opportunity to correct them.

(5) If any deficiency noted in the examination under paragraph3 is not corrected, the European patent application shall be refused. Where the deficiency concerns the right of priority, this right shall be lost for the application.

37. Article 91 shall be deleted.

38. Article 92 shall be amended to read as follows:

Article 92

Drawing up the European search report

The European Patent Office shall, in accordance with the Implementing Regulations, draw up and publish a European search report in respect of the European patent application on the basis of the claims, with due regard to the description and any drawings.

39. Article 93 shall be amended to read as follows:

Article 93

Publication of the European patent application

(1) The European Patent Office shall publish the European patent application as soon as possible

(a) after the expiry of a period of eighteen months from the date of filing or, if priority has been claimed, from the date of priority, or

(b) at the request of the applicant, before the expiry of that period.

(2) The European patent application shall be published at the same time as the specification of the European patent when the decision to grant the patent becomes effective before the expiry of the period referred to in paragraph1(a).

40. Article 94 shall be amended to read as follows:

Article 94

Examination of the European patent application

(1) The European Patent Office shall, in accordance with the Implementing Regulations, examine on request whether the European patent application and the invention to which it relates meet the requirements of this Convention. The request shall not be deemed to be filed until after the examination fee has been paid.

(2) If no request for examination has been made in due time, the application shall be deemed to be withdrawn.

(3) If the examination reveals that the application or the invention to which it relates does not meet the requirements of this Convention, the Examining Division shall invite the applicant, as often as necessary, to file his observations and, subject to Article123, paragraph 1, to amend the application.

(4) If the applicant fails to reply in due time to any communication from the Examining Division, the application shall be deemed to be withdrawn.

41. Articles 95 and 96 shall be deleted.

42. Article 97 shall be amended to read as follows:

Article 97

Grant or refusal

(1) If the Examining Division is of the opinion that the European patent application and the invention to which it relates meet the requirements of this Convention, it shall decide to grant a European patent, provided that the conditions laid down in the Implementing Regulations are fulfilled.

(2) If the Examining Division is of the opinion that the European patent application or the invention to which it relates does not meet the requirements of this Convention, it shall refuse the application unless a different sanction is provided for by this Convention.

(3) The decision to grant a European patent shall take effect on the date on which the mention of the grant is published in the European Patent Bulletin.

43. Article 98 shall be amended to read as follows:

Article 98

Publication of the specification of the European patent

The European Patent Office shall publish the specification of the European patent as soon as possible after the mention of the grant of the European patent has been published in the European Patent Bulletin.

44. The title of Part V shall be amended to read as follows:

PART V

OPPOSITION AND LIMITATION PROCEDURE

45. Article 99 shall be amended to read as follows:

Article 99

Opposition

(1) Within nine months of the publication of the mention of the grant of the European patent in the European Patent Bulletin, any person may give notice to the European Patent Office of opposition to that patent, in accordance with the Implementing Regulations. Notice of opposition shall not be deemed to have been filed until after the opposition fee has been paid.

(2) The opposition shall apply to the European patent in all the Contracting States in which that patent has effect.

(3) Opponents shall be parties to the opposition proceedings as well as the proprietor of the patent.

(4) Where a person provides evidence that in a Contracting State, following a final decision, he has been entered in the patent register of such State instead of the previous proprietor, such person shall, at his request, replace the previous proprietor in respect of such State. By derogation from Article 118, the previous proprietor and the person making the request shall not be deemed to be joint proprietors unless both so request.

46. Article 101 shall be amended to read as follows:

Article 101

Examination of the opposition — Revocation or maintenance of the European patent

(1) If the opposition is admissible, the Opposition Division shall examine, in accordance with the Implementing Regulations, whether at least one ground for opposition under Article100 prejudices the maintenance of the European patent. During this examination, the Opposition Division shall invite the parties, as often as necessary, to file observations on communications from another party or issued by itself.

(2) If the Opposition Division is of the opinion that at least one ground for opposition prejudices the maintenance of the European patent, it shall revoke the patent. Otherwise, it shall reject the opposition.

(3) If the Opposition Division is of the opinion that, taking into consideration the amendments made by the proprietor of the patent during the opposition proceedings, the patent and the invention to which it relates

(a) meet the requirements of this Convention, it shall decide to maintain the patent as amended, provided that the conditions laid down in the Implementing Regulations are fulfilled;

(b) do not meet the requirements of this Convention, it shall revoke the patent.

47. Article 102 shall be deleted.

48. Article 103 shall be amended to read as follows:

Article 103

Publication of a new specification of the European patent

If a European patent is maintained as amended under Article 101, paragraph3(a), the European Patent Office shall publish a new specification of the European patent as soon as possible after the mention of the opposition decision has been published in the European Patent Bulletin.

49. Article 104 shall be amended to read as follows:

Article 104

Costs

(1) Each party to the opposition proceedings shall bear the costs it has incurred, unless the Opposition Division, for reasons of equity, orders, in accordance with the Implementing Regulations, a different apportionment of costs.

(2) The procedure for fixing costs shall be laid down in the Implementing Regulations.

(3) Any final decision of the European Patent Office fixing the amount of costs shall be dealt with, for the purpose of enforcement in the Contracting States, in the same way as a final decision given by a civil court of the State in the territory of which enforcement is to be carried out. Verification of such decision shall be limited to its authenticity.

50. Article 105 shall be amended to read as follows:

Article 105

Intervention of the assumed infringer

(1) Any third party may, in accordance with the Implementing Regulations, intervene in opposition proceedings after the opposition period has expired, if the third party proves that

(a) proceedings for infringement of the same patent have been instituted against him, or

(b) following a request of the proprietor of the patent to cease alleged infringement, the third party has instituted proceedings for a ruling that he is not infringing the patent.

(2) An admissible intervention shall be treated as an opposition.

51. The following new Articles 105a, 105b and 105c shall be inserted after Article105:

Article 105a

Request for limitation or revocation

(1) At the request of the proprietor, the European patent may be revoked or be limited by an amendment of the claims. The request shall be filed with the European Patent Office in accordance with the Implementing Regulations. It shall not be deemed to have been filed until after the limitation or revocation fee has been paid.

(2) The request may not be filed while opposition proceedings in respect of the European patent are pending.

Article 105b

Limitation or revocation of the European patent

(1) The European Patent Office shall examine whether the requirements laid down in the Implementing Regulations for limiting or revoking the European patent have been met.

(2) If the European Patent Office considers that the request for limitation or revocation of the European patent meets these requirements, it shall decide to limit or revoke the European patent in accordance with the Implementing Regulations. Otherwise, it shall reject the request.

(3) The decision to limit or revoke the European patent shall apply to the European patent in all the Contracting States in respect of which it has been granted. It shall take effect on the date on which the European Patent Bulletin mentions the decision.

Article 105c

Publication of the amended specification of the European patent

If the European patent is limited under Article 105b, paragraph 2, the European Patent Office shall publish the amended specification of the European patent as soon as possible after the mention of the limitation has been published in the European Patent Bulletin.

52. Article 106 shall be amended to read as follows:

Article 106

Decisions subject to appeal

(1) An appeal shall lie from decisions of the Receiving Section, Examining Divisions, Opposition Divisions and the Legal Division. It shall have suspensive effect.

(2) A decision which does not terminate proceedings as regards one of the parties can only be appealed together with the final decision, unless the decision allows separate appeal.

(3) The right to file an appeal against decisions relating to the apportionment or fixing of costs in opposition proceedings may be restricted in the Implementing Regulations.

53. Article 108 shall be amended to read as follows:

Article 108

Time limit and form of appeal

Notice of appeal shall be filed, in accordance with the Implementing Regulations, at the European Patent Office within two months of notification of the decision. Notice of appeal shall not be deemed to have been filed until after the fee for appeal has been paid. Within four months of notification of the decision, a statement setting out the grounds of appeal shall be filed in accordance with the Implementing Regulations.

54. Article 110 shall be amended to read as follows:

Article 110

Examination of appeals

If the appeal is admissible, the Board of Appeal shall examine whether the appeal is allowable. The examination of the appeal shall be conducted in accordance with the Implementing Regulations.

55. The following new Article 112a shall be inserted after Article 112:

Article 112a

Petition for review by the Enlarged Board of Appeal

(1) Any party to appeal proceedings adversely affected by the decision of the Board of Appeal may file a petition for review of the decision by the Enlarged Board of Appeal.

(2) The petition may only be filed on the grounds that:

(a) a member of the Board of Appeal took part in the decision in breach of Article24, paragraph1, or despite being excluded pursuant to a decision under Article 24, paragraph 4;

(b) the Board of Appeal included a person not appointed as a member of the Boards of Appeal;

(c) a fundamental violation of Article 113 occurred;

(d) any other fundamental procedural defect defined in the Implementing Regulations occurred in the appeal proceedings; or

(e) a criminal act established under the conditions laid down in the Implementing Regulations may have had an impact on the decision.

(3) The petition for review shall not have suspensive effect.

(4) The petition for review shall be filed in a reasoned statement, in accordance with the Implementing Regulations. If based on paragraph 2(a) to (d), the petition shall be filed within two months of notification of the decision of the Board of Appeal. If based on paragraph 2(e), the petition shall be filed within two months of the date on which the criminal act has been established and in any event not later than five years from notification of the decision of the Board of Appeal. The petition shall not be deemed to have been filed until after the prescribed fee has been paid.

(5) The Enlarged Board of Appeal shall examine the petition for review in accordance with the Implementing Regulations. If the petition is allowable, the Enlarged Board of Appeal shall set aside the decision under review and shall re-open proceedings before the Boards of Appeal in accordance with the Implementing Regulations.

(6) Any person who, in a designated Contracting State, has in good faith used or made effective and serious preparations for using an invention which is the subject of a published European patent application or a European patent in the period between the decision of the Board of Appeal under review and publication of the mention of the decision of the Enlarged Board of Appeal on the petition, may without payment continue such use in the course of his business or for the needs thereof.

56. Article 115 shall be amended to read as follows:

Article 115

Observations by third parties

In proceedings before the European Patent Office, following the publication of the European patent application, any third party may, in accordance with the Implementing Regulations, present observations concerning the patentability of the invention to which the application or patent relates. That person shall not be a party to the proceedings.

57. Article 117 shall be amended to read as follows:

Article 117

Means and taking of evidence

(1) In proceedings before the European Patent Office the means of giving or obtaining evidence shall include the following:

(a) hearing the parties;

(b) requests for information;

(c) production of documents;

(d) hearing witnesses;

(e) opinions by experts;

(f) inspection;

(g) sworn statements in writing.

(2) The procedure for taking such evidence shall be laid down in the Implementing Regulations.

58. Article 119 shall be amended to read as follows:

Article 119

Notification

Decisions, summonses, notices and communications shall be notified by the European Patent Office of its own motion in accordance with the Implementing Regulations. Notifications may, where exceptional circumstances so require, be effected through the intermediary of the central industrial property offices of the Contracting States.

59. Article 120 shall be amended to read as follows:

Article 120

Time limits

The Implementing Regulations shall specify:

(a) the time limits which are to be observed in proceedings before the European Patent Office and are not fixed by this Convention;

(b) the manner of computation of time limits and the conditions under which time limits may be extended;

(c) the minima and maxima for time limits to be determined by the European Patent Office.

60. Article 121 shall be amended to read as follows:

Article 121

Further processing of the European patent application

(1) If an applicant fails to observe a time limit vis-à-vis the European Patent Office, he may request further processing of the European patent application.

(2) The European Patent Office shall grant the request, provided that the requirements laid down in the Implementing Regulations are met. Otherwise, it shall reject the request.

(3) If the request is granted, the legal consequences of the failure to observe the time limit shall be deemed not to have ensued.

(4) Further processing shall be ruled out in respect of the time limits in Article 87, paragraph 1, Article 108 and Article 112a, paragraph 4, as well as the time limits for requesting further processing or re-establishment of rights. The Implementing Regulations may rule out further processing for other time limits.

61. Article 122 shall be amended to read as follows:

Article 122

Re-establishment of rights

(1) An applicant for or proprietor of a European patent who, in spite of all due care required by the circumstances having been taken, was unable to observe a time limit vis-à-vis the European Patent Office shall, upon request, have his rights re-established if the non-observance of this time limit has the direct consequence of causing the refusal of the European patent application, or of a request, or the deeming of the European patent application to have been withdrawn, or the revocation of the European patent, or the loss of any other right or means of redress.

(2) The European Patent Office shall grant the request, provided that the conditions of paragraph 1 and any other requirements laid down in the Implementing Regulations are met. Otherwise, it shall reject the request.

(3) If the request is granted, the legal consequences of the failure to observe the time limit shall be deemed not to have ensued.

(4) Re-establishment of rights shall be ruled out in respect of the time limit for requesting re-establishment of rights. The Implementing Regulations may rule out re-establishment for other time limits.

(5) Any person who, in a designated Contracting State, has in good faith used or made effective and serious preparations for using an invention which is the subject of a published European patent application or a European patent in the period between the loss of rights referred to in paragraph 1 and publication of the mention of re-establishment of those rights, may without payment continue such use in the course of his business or for the needs thereof.

(6) Nothing in this Article shall limit the right of a Contracting State to grant re-establishment of rights in respect of time limits provided for in this Convention and to be observed vis-à-vis the authorities of such State.

62. Article 123 shall be amended to read as follows:

Article 123

Amendments

(1) A European patent application or European patent may be amended in proceedings before the European Patent Office, in accordance with the Implementing Regulations. In any case, the applicant shall be given at least one opportunity of amending the application of his own volition.

(2) A European patent application or European patent may not be amended in such a way that it contains subject-matter which extends beyond the content of the application as filed.

(3) A European patent may not be amended in such a way as to extend the protection it confers.

63. Article 124 shall be amended to read as follows:

Article 124

Information on prior art

(1) The European Patent Office may, in accordance with the Implementing Regulations, invite the applicant to provide information on prior art taken into consideration in national or regional patent proceedings and concerning an invention to which the European patent application relates.

(2) If the applicant fails to reply in due time to an invitation under paragraph 1, the European patent application shall be deemed to be withdrawn.

64. Article 126 shall be deleted.

65. Article 127 shall be amended to read as follows:

Article 127

European Patent Register

The European Patent Office shall keep a European Patent Register, in which the particulars specified in the Implementing Regulations shall be recorded. No entry shall be made in the European Patent Register prior to the publication of the European patent application. The European Patent Register shall be open to public inspection.

66. Article 128 shall be amended to read as follows:

Article 128

Inspection of files

(1) Files relating to European patent applications which have not yet been published shall not be made available for inspection without the consent of the applicant.

(2) Any person who can prove that the applicant has invoked the rights under the European patent application against him may obtain inspection of the files prior to the publication of that application and without the consent of the applicant.

(3) Where a European divisional application or a new European patent application filed under Article 61, paragraph 1, is published, any person may obtain inspection of the files of the earlier application prior to the publication of that application and without the consent of the applicant.

(4) Subsequent to the publication of the European patent application, the files relating to the application and the resulting European patent may be inspected on request, subject to the restrictions laid down in the Implementing Regulations.

(5) Even prior to the publication of the European patent application, the European Patent Office may communicate to third parties or publish the particulars specified in the Implementing Regulations.

67. Article 129 shall be amended to read as follows:

Article 129

Periodical publications

The European Patent Office shall periodically publish:

(a) a European Patent Bulletin containing the particulars the publication of which is prescribed by this Convention, the Implementing Regulations or the President of the European Patent Office;

(b) an Official Journal containing notices and information of a general character issued by the President of the European Patent Office, as well as any other information relevant to this Convention or its implementation.

68. Article 130 shall be amended to read as follows:

Article 130

Exchange of information

(1) Unless otherwise provided in this Convention or in national laws, the European Patent Office and the central industrial property office of any Contracting State shall, on request, communicate to each other any useful information regarding European or national patent applications and patents and any proceedings concerning them.

(2) Paragraph1 shall apply to the communication of information by virtue of working agreements between the European Patent Office and

(a) the central industrial property offices of other States;

(b) any intergovernmental organisation entrusted with the task of granting patents;

(c) any other organisation.

(3) The communications under paragraphs1 and 2(a) and (b) shall not be subject to the restrictions laid down in Article 128. The Administrative Council may decide that communications under paragraph2(c) shall not be subject to such restrictions, provided that the organisation concerned treats the information communicated as confidential until the European patent application has been published.

69. Article 133 shall be amended to read as follows:

Article 133

General principles of representation

(1) Subject to paragraph 2, no person shall be compelled to be represented by a professional representative in proceedings established by this Convention.

(2) Natural or legal persons not having their residence or principal place of business in a Contracting State shall be represented by a professional representative and act through him in all proceedings established by this Convention, other than in filing a European patent application; the Implementing Regulations may permit other exceptions.

(3) Natural or legal persons having their residence or principal place of business in a Contracting State may be represented in proceedings established by this Convention by an employee, who need not be a professional representative but who shall be authorised in accordance with the Implementing Regulations. The Implementing Regulations may provide whether and under what conditions an employee of such a legal person may also represent other legal persons which have their principal place of business in a Contracting State and which have economic connections with the first legal person.

(4) The Implementing Regulations may prescribe special provisions concerning the common representation of parties acting in common.

70. Article 134 shall be amended to read as follows:

Article 134

Representation before the European Patent Office

(1) Representation of natural or legal persons in proceedings established by this Convention may only be undertaken by professional representatives whose names appear on a list maintained for this purpose by the European Patent Office.

(2) Any natural person who

(a) is a national of a Contracting State,

(b) has his place of business or employment in a Contracting State and

(c) has passed the European qualifying examination

may be entered on the list of professional representatives.

(3) During a period of one year from the date on which the accession of a State to this Convention takes effect, entry on that list may also be requested by any natural person who

(a) is a national of a Contracting State,

(b) has his place of business or employment in the State having acceded to the Convention and

(c) is entitled to represent natural or legal persons in patent matters before the central industrial property office of that State. Where such entitlement is not conditional upon the requirement of special professional qualifications, the person shall have regularly so acted in that State for at least five years.

(4) Entry shall be effected upon request, accompanied by certificates which shall indicate that the conditions laid down in paragraph 2 or 3 are fulfilled.

(5) Persons whose names appear on the list of professional representatives shall be entitled to act in all proceedings established by this Convention.

(6) For the purpose of acting as a professional representative, any person whose name appears on the list referred to in paragraph 1 shall be entitled to establish a place of business in any Contracting State in which proceedings established by this Convention may be conducted, having regard to the Protocol on Centralisation annexed to this Convention. The authorities of such State may remove that entitlement in individual cases only in application of legal provisions adopted for the purpose of protecting public security and law and order. Before such action is taken, the President of the European Patent Office shall be consulted.

(7) The President of the European Patent Office may grant exemption from:

(a) the requirement of paragraphs 2(a) or 3(a) in special circumstances;

(b) the requirement of paragraph 3(c), second sentence, if the applicant furnishes proof that he has acquired the requisite qualification in another way.

(8) Representation in proceedings established by this Convention may also be undertaken, in the same way as by a professional representative, by any legal practitioner qualified in a Contracting State and having his place of business in that State, to the extent that he is entitled in that State to act as a professional representative in patent matters. Paragraph 6 shall apply mutatis mutandis.

71. The following new Article 134a shall be inserted after Article 134:

Article 134a

Institute of Professional Representatives before the European Patent Office

(1) The Administrative Council shall be competent to adopt and amend provisions governing:

(a) the Institute of Professional Representatives before the European Patent Office, hereinafter referred to as the Institute;

(b) the qualifications and training required of a person for admission to the European qualifying examination and the conduct of such examination;

(c) any disciplinary power exercised by the Institute or the European Patent Office in respect of professional representatives;

(d) the obligation of confidentiality on the professional representative and the privilege from disclosure in proceedings before the European Patent Office in respect of communications between a professional representative and his client or any other person.

(2) Any person entered on the list of professional representatives referred to in Article 134, paragraph 1, shall be a member of the Institute.

72. Article 135 shall be amended to read as follows:

Article 135

Request for the application of national procedure

(1) The central industrial property office of a designated Contracting State shall, at the request of the applicant for or proprietor of a European patent, apply the procedure for the grant of a national patent in the following circumstances:

(a) when the European patent application is deemed to be withdrawn pursuant to Article 77, paragraph 3;

(b) in such other cases as are provided for by the national law in which the European patent application is refused or withdrawn or deemed to be withdrawn, or the European patent is revoked under this Convention.

(2) In the case referred to in paragraph1(a), the request for conversion shall be filed with the central industrial property office with which the European patent application has been filed. That office shall, subject to the provisions of national security, transmit the request directly to the central industrial property offices of the Contracting States specified therein.

(3) In the cases referred to in paragraph 1(b), the request for conversion shall be submitted to the European Patent Office in accordance with the Implementing Regulations. It shall not be deemed to be filed until after the conversion fee has been paid. The European Patent Office shall transmit the request to the central industrial property offices of the Contracting States specified therein.

(4) The effect of the European patent application referred to in Article 66 shall lapse if the request for conversion is not submitted in due time.

73. Article 136 shall be deleted.

74. Article 137 shall be amended to read as follows:

Article 137

Formal requirements for conversion

(1) A European patent application transmitted in accordance with Article 135, paragraph 2 or 3, shall not be subjected to formal requirements of national law which are different from or additional to those provided for in this Convention.

(2) Any central industrial property office to which the application is transmitted may require that the applicant shall, within not less than two months:

(a) pay the national application fee;

(b) file a translation of the original text of the European patent application in one of the official languages of the State in question and, where appropriate, of the text as amended during proceedings before the European Patent Office which the applicant wishes to submit to the national procedure.

75. Article 138 shall be amended to read as follows:

Article 138

Revocation of European patents

(1) Subject to Article 139, a European patent may be revoked with effect for a Contracting State only on the grounds that:

(a) the subject-matter of the European patent is not patentable under Articles 52 to 57;

(b) the European patent does not disclose the invention in a manner sufficiently clear and complete for it to be carried out by a person skilled in the art;

(c) the subject-matter of the European patent extends beyond the content of the application as filed or, if the patent was granted on a divisional application or on a new application filed under Article 61, beyond the content of the earlier application as filed;

(d) the protection conferred by the European patent has been extended; or

(e) the proprietor of the European patent is not entitled under Article 60, paragraph 1.

(2) If the grounds for revocation affect the European patent only in part, the patent shall be limited by a corresponding amendment of the claims and revoked in part.

(3) In proceedings before the competent court or authority relating to the validity of the European patent, the proprietor of the patent shall have the right to limit the patent by amending the claims. The patent as thus limited shall form the basis for the proceedings.

76. Article 140 shall be amended to read as follows:

Article 140

National utility models and utility certificates

Articles 66, 124, 135, 137 and 139 shall apply to utility models and utility certificates and to applications for utility models and utility certificates registered or deposited in the Contracting States whose laws make provision for such models or certificates.

77. Article 141 shall be amended to read as follows:

Article 141

Renewal fees for a European patent

(1) Renewal fees for a European patent may only be imposed for the years which follow that referred to in Article 86, paragraph 2.

(2) Any renewal fees falling due within two months of the publication of the mention of the grant of the European patent shall be deemed to have been validly paid if they are paid within that period. Any additional fee provided for under national law shall not be charged.

78. The following new Article 149a shall be inserted after Article 149:

Article 149a

Other agreements between the Contracting States

(1) Nothing in this Convention shall be construed as limiting the right of some or all of the Contracting States to conclude special agreements on any matters concerning European patent applications or European patents which under this Convention are subject to and governed by national law, such as, in particular,

(a) an agreement establishing a European patent court common to the Contracting States party to it;

(b) an agreement establishing an entity common to the Contracting States party to it to deliver, at the request of national courts or quasi-judicial authorities, opinions on issues of European or harmonised national patent law;

(c) an agreement under which the Contracting States party to it dispense fully or in part with translations of European patents under Article 65;

(d) an agreement under which the Contracting States party to it provide that translations of European patents as required under Article 65 may be filed with, and published by, the European Patent Office.

(2) The Administrative Council shall be competent to decide that:

(a) the members of the Boards of Appeal or the Enlarged Board of Appeal may serve on a European patent court or a common entity and take part in proceedings before that court or entity in accordance with any such agreement;

(b) the European Patent Office shall provide a common entity with such support staff, premises and equipment as may be necessary for the performance of its duties, and the expenses incurred by that entity shall be borne fully or in part by the Organisation.

79. Part X of the Convention shall be amended to read as follows:

PART X

INTERNATIONAL APPLICATIONS UNDER THE PATENT COOPERATION TREATY — EURO-PCT APPLICATIONS

Article 150

Application of the Patent Cooperation Treaty

(1) The Patent Cooperation Treaty of 19 June 1970, hereinafter referred to as the PCT, shall be applied in accordance with the provisions of this Part.

(2) International applications filed under the PCT may be the subject of proceedings before the European Patent Office. In such proceedings, the provisions of the PCT and its Regulations shall be applied, supplemented by the provisions of this Convention. In case of conflict, the provisions of the PCT or its Regulations shall prevail.

Article 151

The European Patent Office as a receiving Office

The European Patent Office shall act as a receiving Office within the meaning of the PCT, in accordance with the Implementing Regulations. Article75, paragraph 2, shall apply mutatis mutandis.

Article 152

The European Patent Office as an International Searching Authority or International Preliminary Examining Authority

The European Patent Office shall act as an International Searching Authority and International Preliminary Examining Authority within the meaning of the PCT, in accordance with an agreement between the Organisation and the International Bureau of the World Intellectual Property Organization, for applicants who are residents or nationals of a Contracting State to this Convention. This agreement may provide that the European Patent Office shall also act forother applicants.

Article 153

The European Patent Office as designated Office or elected Office

(1) The European Patent Office shall be

(a) a designated Office for any Contracting State to this Convention in respect of which the PCT is in force, which is designated in the international application and for which the applicant wishes to obtain a European patent, and

(b) an elected Office, if the applicant has elected a State designated pursuant to (a).

(2) An international application for which the European Patent Office is a designated or elected Office, and which has been accorded an international date of filing, shall be equivalent to a regular European application (Euro-PCT application).

(3) The international publication of a Euro-PCT application in one of the official languages of the European Patent Office shall take the place of the publication of the European patent application and shall be mentioned in the European Patent Bulletin.

(4) If the Euro-PCT application is published in another language, a translation into one of the official languages shall be filed with the European Patent Office, which shall publish it. Subject to Article 67, paragraph 3, the provisional protection under Article 67, paragraphs 1 and 2, shall be effective from the date of that publication.

(5) The Euro-PCT application shall be treated as a European patent application and shall be considered as comprised in the state of the art under Article 54, paragraph 3, if the conditions laid down in paragraph 3 or 4 and in the Implementing Regulations are fulfilled.

(6) The international search report drawn up in respect of a Euro-PCT application or the declaration replacing it, and their international publication, shall take the place of the European search report and the mention of its publication in the European Patent Bulletin.

(7) A supplementary European search report shall be drawn up in respect of any Euro-PCT application under paragraph 5. The Administrative Council may decide that the supplementary search report is to be dispensed with or that the search fee is to be reduced.

80. Articles 154, 155, 156, 157, 158, 159, 160, 161, 162 and 163 shall be deleted.

81. Article 164 shall be amended to read as follows:

Article 164

Implementing Regulations and Protocols

(1) The Implementing Regulations, the Protocol on Recognition, the Protocol on Privileges and Immunities, the Protocol on Centralisation, the Protocol on the Interpretation of Article 69 and the Protocol on the Staff Complement shall be integral parts of this Convention.

(2) In case of conflict between the provisions of this Convention and those of the Implementing Regulations, the provisions of this Convention shall prevail.

82. Article 167 shall be deleted.

Article 2

PROTOCOLS

1. The Protocol on the Interpretation of Article 69 EPC shall be amended to read as follows:

PROTOCOL ON THE INTERPRETATION OF ARTICLE 69

Article 1

General principles

Article 69 should not be interpreted in the sense that the extent of the protection conferred by a European patent is to be understood as that defined by the strict, literal meaning of the wording used in the claims, the description and drawings being employed only for the purpose of resolving an ambiguity found in the claims. Neither should it be interpreted in the sense that the claims serve only as a guideline and that the actual protection conferred may extend to what, from a consideration of the description and drawings by a person skilled in the art, the patentee has contemplated. On the contrary, it is to be interpreted as defining a position between these extremes which combines a fair protection for the patentee with a reasonable degree of certainty for third parties.

Article 2

Equivalents

For the purpose of determining the extent of protection conferred by a European patent, due account shall be taken of any element which is equivalent to an element specified in the claims.

2. The following Protocol shall be annexed to the European Patent Convention as an integral part thereof:

PROTOCOL ON THE STAFF COMPLEMENT OF THE EUROPEAN PATENT OFFICE AT THE HAGUE

(PROTOCOL ON THE STAFF COMPLEMENT)

The European Patent Organisation shall ensure that the proportion of European Patent Office posts assigned to the duty station at The Hague as defined under the 2000 establishment plan and table of posts remains substantially unchanged. Any change in the number of posts assigned to the duty station at The Hague resulting in a deviation of more than ten per cent of that proportion, which proves necessary for the proper functioning of the European Patent Office, shall be subject to a decision by the Administrative Council of the Organisation on a proposal from the President of the European Patent Office after consultation with the Governments of the Federal Republic of Germany and the Kingdom of the Netherlands.

3. Section I of the Protocol on Centralisation shall be amended to read as follows:

PROTOCOL ON THE CENTRALISATION OF THE EUROPEAN PATENT SYSTEM AND ON ITS INTRODUCTION

(PROTOCOL ON CENTRALISATION)

Section I

(1)(a) Upon entry into force of the Convention, States parties thereto which are also members of the International Patent Institute set up by the Hague Agreement of 6 June 1947 shall take all necessary steps to ensure the transfer to the European Patent Office, no later than the date referred to in Article 162, paragraph 1, of the Convention, of all assets and liabilities and all staff members of the International Patent Institute. Such transfer shall be effected by an agreement between the International Patent Institute and the European Patent Organisation. The above States and the other States parties to the Convention shall take all necessary steps to ensure that that agreement shall be implemented no later than the date referred to in Article 162, paragraph 1, of the Convention. Upon implementation of the agreement, those Member States of the International Patent Institute which are also parties to the Convention further undertake to terminate their participation in the Hague Agreement.

(b) The States parties to the Convention shall take all necessary steps to ensure that all the assets and liabilities and all the staff members of the International Patent Institute are taken into the European Patent Office in accordance with the agreement referred to in sub-paragraph (a). After the implementation of that agreement the tasks incumbent upon the International Patent Institute at the date on which the Convention is opened for signature, and in particular those carried out vis-à-vis its Member States, whether or not they become parties to the Convention, and such tasks as it has undertaken at the time of the entry into force of the Convention to carry out vis-à-vis States which, at that date, are both members of the International Patent Institute and parties to the Convention, shall be assumed by the European Patent Office. In addition, the Administrative Council of the European Patent Organisation may allocate further duties in the field of searching to the European Patent Office.

(c) The above obligations shall also apply mutatis mutandis to the sub-office set up under the Hague Agreement under the conditions set out in the agreement between the International Patent Institute and the Government of the Contracting State concerned. This Government hereby undertakes to make a new agreement with the European Patent Organisation in place of the one already made with the International Patent Institute to harmonise the clauses concerning the organisation, operation and financing of the sub-office with the provisions of this Protocol.

(2) Subject to the provisions of Section III, the States parties to the Convention shall, on behalf of their central industrial property offices, renounce in favour of the European Patent Office any activities as International Searching Authorities under the Patent Cooperation Treaty as from the date referred to in Article 162, paragraph1, of the Convention.

(3)(a) A sub-office of the European Patent Office shall be set up in Berlin as from the date referred to in Article 162, paragraph 1, of the Convention. It shall operate under the direction of the branch at The Hague.

(b) The Administrative Council shall determine the duties to be allocated to the sub-office in Berlin in the light of general considerations and of the requirements of the European Patent Office.

(c) At least at the beginning of the period following the progressive expansion of the field of activity of the European Patent Office, the amount of work assigned to that sub-office shall be sufficient to enable the examining staff of the Berlin Annex of the German Patent Office, as it stands at the date on which the Convention is opened for signature, to be fully employed.

(d) The Federal Republic of Germany shall bear any additional costs incurred by the European Patent Organisation in setting up and maintaining the sub-office in Berlin.

Article 3

NEW TEXT OF THE CONVENTION

(1) The Administrative Council of the European Patent Organisation is hereby authorised to draw up, at the proposal of the President of the European Patent Office, a new text of the European Patent Convention. In the new text, the wording of the provisions of the Convention shall be aligned, where necessary, in the three official languages. The provisions of the Convention may also be renumbered consecutively and the references to other provisions of the Convention may be amended in accordance with the new numbering.

(2) The Administrative Council shall adopt the new text of the Convention by a majority of three quarters of the Contracting States represented and voting. On its adoption, the new text of the Convention shall become an integral part of this Revision Act.

Article 4

SIGNATURE AND RATIFICATION

(1) This Revision Act shall be open for signature by the Contracting States at the European Patent Office in Munich until 1September2001.

(2) This Revision Act shall be subject to ratification; instruments of ratification shall be deposited with the Government of the Federal Republic of Germany.

Article 5

ACCESSION

(1) This Revision Act shall be open, until its entry into force, to accession by the Contracting States to the Convention and the States which ratify the Convention or accede thereto.

(2) Instruments of accession shall be deposited with the Government of the Federal Republic of Germany.

Article 6

PROVISIONAL APPLICATION

Article 1, items 4-6 and 12-15, Article 2, items 2 and 3 and Articles 3 and 7 of this Revision Act shall be applied provisionally.

Article 7

TRANSITIONAL PROVISIONS

(1) The revised version of the Convention shall apply to all European patent applications filed after its entry into force, as well as to all patents granted in respect of such applications. It shall not apply to European patents already granted at the time of its entry into force, or to European patent applications pending at that time, unless otherwise decided by the Administrative Council of the European Patent Organisation.

(2) The Administrative Council of the European Patent Organisation shall take a decision under paragraph1 no later than 30 June 2001, by a majority of three quarters of the

Contracting States represented and voting. Such decision shall become an integral part of this Revision Act.

Article 8

ENTRY INTO FORCE

(1) The revised text of the European Patent Convention shall enter into force two years after the fifteenth Contracting State has deposited its instrument of ratification or accession, or on the first day of the third month following the deposit of the instrument of ratification or accession by the Contracting State taking this step as the last of all the Contracting States, if this takes place earlier.

(2) Upon entry into force of the revised text of the Convention, the text valid until that time shall cease to apply.

Article 9

TRANSMISSION AND NOTIFICATIONS

(1) The Government of the Federal Republic of Germany shall draw up certified true copies of this Revision Act and shall transmit them to the governments of the Contracting States and of the States able to accede to the European Patent Convention under Article 166, paragraph 1.

(2) The Government of the Federal Republic of Germany shall notify the governments referred to in paragraph 1 concerning:

(a) the deposit of any instrument of ratification or accession;

(b) the date of entry into force of this Revision Act.

IN WITNESS WHEREOF, the Plenipotentiaries authorised thereto, having presented their Full Powers, found to be in good and due form, have signed this Revision Act.

DONE at Munich this twenty-ninth day of November two thousand in a single original in the English, French and German languages, the three texts being equally authentic. This original text shall be deposited in the archives of the Federal Republic of Germany.

KONVENCIJA PAR EIROPAS PATENTU PIEŠĶIRŠANU
(Eiropas Patentu Konvencija)

pieņemta 1973. gada 5. oktobrī, grozīta ar 1991. gada 17. decembra aktu par EPK 63. panta grozījumiem, un Eiropas Patentu organizācijas Administratīvās padomes 1978. gada 21. decembra, 1994. gada 13. decembra, 1995. gada 20. oktobra, 1996. gada 5. decembra un 1998. gada 10. decembra lēmumiem.

PREAMBULA

Dalībvalstis,

VĒLOTIES stiprināt sadarbību starp Eiropas valstīm izgudrojumu tiesiskajā aizsardzībā,

VĒLOTIES, lai šo aizsardzību šajās valstīs var iegūt vienas patentu piešķiršanas procedūras rezultātā, un lai šādi piešķirti patenti atbilstu noteiktiem standartiem,

VĒLOTIES šim nolūkam noslēgt vienošanos (Konvenciju), kas nodibina Eiropas Patentu organizāciju, kura izveido īpašu nolīgumu Konvencijas intelektuālā īpašuma aizsardzībai 19. panta nozīmē, kas parakstīta Parīzē 1883. gada 20. martā, kurā jaunākie grozījumi izdarīti 1967. gada 14. jūlijā, un reģionālu patentu līgumu Patentu kooperācijas līguma 45. panta 1. daļas nozīmē, kas pieņemts 1970. gada 19. jūnijā,

ir vienojušās par sekojošo:

I daļa

VISPĀRĒJIE UN INSTITUCIONĀLIE NOTEIKUMI

I nodaļa

Vispārējie noteikumi

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Eiropas tiesības patentu piešķiršanā

Ar šo Konvenciju tiek nodibināta visām dalībvalstīm kopēja tiesību sistēma patentu piešķiršanai uz izgudrojumiem.

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Eiropas patents

(1) Patentus, kas piešķirti saskaņā ar Konvenciju, sauc par Eiropas patentiem.

(2) Eiropas patents katrā dalībvalstī, attiecībā uz kuru tas piešķirts, bauda tādas pašas tiesības un ir pakļauts tādiem pašiem nosacījumiem kā dalībvalsts nacionālais patents, ja Konvencijā nav paredzēts citādi.

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Teritoriālais spēks

Eiropas patenta piešķiršanu var prasīt attiecībā uz vienu vai vairākām dalībvalstīm.

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Eiropas Patentu organizācija

(1) Ar Konvenciju tiek nodibināta Eiropas Patentu organizācija (turpmāk saukta par Organizāciju). Tā ir administratīvi un finansiāli neatkarīga institūcija.

(2) Organizācijas struktūrvienības ir:

(a) Eiropas Patentu iestāde;

(b) Administratīvā padome.

(3) Organizācijas uzdevums ir piešķirt Eiropas patentus. Šo uzdevumu veic Eiropas Patentu iestāde, kuru pārrauga Administratīvā padome.

II nodaļa

Eiropas Patentu organizācija

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Juridiskais statuss

(1) Organizācija ir juridiska persona.

(2) Katrā dalībvalstī Organizācija bauda visplašākās tiesības, kādas tiek piešķirtas juridiskām personām saskaņā ar attiecīgās dalībvalsts likumiem; arī tiesības iegūt un atsavināt kustamo un nekustamo īpašumu, un tā var būt puse tiesvedībā.

(3) Organizāciju pārstāv Eiropas Patentu iestādes prezidents.

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Atrašanās vieta

(1) Organizācija atrodas Minhenē.

(2) Eiropas Patentu iestāde atrodas Minhenē. Tai ir filiāle Hāgā.

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Eiropas Patentu iestādes palīgiestādes

Ar Administratīvās padomes lēmumu, ja ir nepieciešams, dalībvalstīs un rūpnieciskā īpašuma starpvalstu organizāciju ietvaros var izveidot Eiropas Patentu iestādes palīgiestādes informācijas apmaiņai un saziņai, ja šīs dalībvalstis vai attiecīgās organizācijas tam piekrīt.

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Privilēģijas un imunitātes

Konvencijai pievienotais Protokols par privilēģijām un imunitātēm nosaka apstākļus, kādos Organizācija, Administratīvās padomes locekļi, Eiropas Patentu iestādes darbinieki un citas minētajā Protokolā nosauktās personas, ja tās pilda Organizācijas uzdevumus, bauda katrā dalībvalstī privilēģijas un imunitātes, kas nepieciešamas viņu pienākumu izpildei.

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Atbildība

(1) Organizācijas līgumsaistības regulē konkrētam līgumam piemērojamais likums.

(2) Organizācijas atbildību par jebkuru zaudējumu, ko radījuši Eiropas Patentu iestādes darbinieki, veicot savus darba pienākumus, kas neizriet no līgumiem, regulē Vācijas Federatīvās Republikas likumi. Atbildību par zaudējumiem, ko ir radījusi Hāgas filiāle vai palīgiestādes, vai to darbinieki, regulē tās dalībvalsts likumi, kurā filiāle vai palīgiestāde atrodas.

(3) Eiropas Patentu iestādes darbinieku personisko atbildību pret Organizāciju regulē Dienesta noteikumi vai darba līgums.

(4) Šī panta 1. un 2. daļā minētos strīdus izskata šādas tiesas:

(a) 1. daļā minētos strīdus — Vācijas Federatīvās Republikas tiesas, ja līgumā, kas noslēgts starp pusēm, nav norādīta citas valsts tiesa;

(b) 2. daļā minētos strīdus — Vācijas Federatīvās Republikas tiesas vai tās dalībvalsts tiesas, kuru teritorijā atrodas filiāle vai palīgiestāde.

III nodaļa

Eiropas Patentu iestāde

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Vadība

(1) Eiropas Patentu iestādi vada prezidents, kurš par iestādes darbību atskaitās Administratīvajai padomei.

(2) Šim nolūkam prezidentam ir šādas funkcijas un pilnvaras:

(a) veikt nepieciešamos pasākumus, kas nodrošina Eiropas Patentu iestādes darbību, arī iekšējo administratīvo instrukciju pieņemšanu un publisku ieteikumu izstrādāšanu;

(b) noteikt, kādas darbības tiek veiktas Eiropas Patentu iestādē Minhenē un kādas tās filiālē Hāgā, ja tās nav noteiktas Konvencijā;

(c) iesniegt Administratīvai padomei priekšlikumus par Konvencijas grozīšanu un priekšlikumus vispārējiem noteikumiem vai lēmumiem, kas ir Administratīvās padomes kompetencē;

(d) sastādīt un īstenot budžetu, arī grozīto vai papildināto budžetu;

(e) iesniegt vadības ziņojumu Administratīvai padomei vienu reizi gadā;

(f) veikt personāla pārraudzību;

(g) iecelt un paaugstināt amatā darbiniekus, kā norādīts 11. pantā;

(h) veikt citus, 11. pantā neminētus, disciplinārus pasākumus attiecībā pret darbiniekiem, un var ieteikt Administratīvai padomei 11. panta 2. un 3. daļā minētos disciplināros pasākumus pret darbiniekiem;

(i) var deleģēt savas funkcijas un pilnvaras.

(3) Prezidentam palīdz vairāki viceprezidenti. Ja prezidents ir prombūtnē vai nevesels, viens no viceprezidentiem ieņem viņa vietu saskaņā ar procedūru, kuru izstrādā Administratīvā padome.

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Vadošo darbinieku iecelšana

(1) Eiropas Patentu iestādes prezidentu ieceļ ar Administratīvās padomes lēmumu.

(2) Viceprezidentus ieceļ ar Administratīvās padomes lēmumu pēc konsultēšanās ar prezidentu.

(3) Apelācijas padomju un Paplašinātās apelācijas padomes locekļus, arī priekšsēdētājus, ieceļ ar Administratīvās padomes lēmumu pēc Eiropas Patentu iestādes prezidenta ieteikuma. Viņus var iecelt atkārtoti ar Administratīvās padomes lēmumu pēc konsultēšanās ar Eiropas Patentu iestādes prezidentu.

(4) Administratīvā padome īsteno 1. līdz 3. daļā minētos disciplināros pasākumus pret darbiniekiem.

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Darbinieku amata pienākumi

Eiropas Patentu iestādes darbiniekiem, pat pēc darba līguma beigām, ir pienākums neizpaust un neizmantot informāciju, kas pēc savas būtības ir profesionāls noslēpums.

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Strīdi starp Organizāciju un Eiropas Patentu iestādes darbiniekiem

(1) Eiropas Patentu iestādes darbinieki un bijušie darbinieki vai to tiesību pārņēmēji var vērsties Starptautiskās Darba Organizācijas Administratīvajā šķīrējtiesā strīdu gadījumos ar Eiropas Patentu organizāciju, atbilstoši šīs šķīrējtiesas statūtiem, termiņos un pie nosacījumiem, kas noteikti Dienesta noteikumos pastāvīgajiem darbiniekiem vai Pensionēšanās noteikumos, vai kas izriet no citu darbinieku darba nosacījumiem.

(2) Apelācija ir pieļaujama tikai tad, ja attiecīgā persona ir izsmēlusi tās pārsūdzības iespējas, kas viņai ir pieejamas attiecīgi saskaņā ar Dienesta noteikumiem, Pensionēšanās noteikumiem vai darba nosacījumiem.

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Eiropas Patentu iestādes darba valodas

(1) Eiropas Patentu iestādes oficiālās valodas ir angļu, franču un vācu valoda. Eiropas patenta pieteikumi jāiesniedz vienā no šīm valodām.

(2) Tomēr fiziskās un juridiskās personas, kuru dzīves vai galvenā uzņēmējdarbības vieta ir dalībvalstī, kurā oficiālā valoda ir cita, nevis angļu, franču vai vācu, un šīs valsts pilsoņi, kuru dzīves vieta ir ārvalstī, var iesniegt Eiropas patentu pieteikumus minētās valsts oficiālajā valodā. Šajā gadījumā pieteikuma tulkojums vienā no Eiropas Patentu iestādes oficiālajām valodām jāiesniedz termiņā, kas noteikts Reglamentā; šo tulkojumu var saskaņot (precizēt) ar pieteikuma oriģinālo tekstu visā lietvedības gaitā Eiropas Patentu iestādē.

(3) Eiropas Patentu iestādes oficiālā valoda, kurā Eiropas patentu pieteikumi ir iesniegti vai 2. daļā norādītajos gadījumos tulkoti, attiecībā uz šiem pieteikumiem un pēc tiem piešķirtajiem patentiem tiek lietota kā lietvedības valoda visās darbībās Eiropas Patentu iestādē, ja Reglaments neparedz citu kārtību.

(4) Šī panta 2. daļā minētās personas arī dokumentus, kas jāiesniedz noteiktā termiņā, var iesniegt attiecīgās dalībvalsts oficiālajā valodā. Šo dokumentu tulkojums lietvedības valodā jāiesniedz Reglamentā noteiktā termiņā; Reglamentā paredzētos gadījumos tulkojumu var iesniegt citā oficiālajā Eiropas Patentu iestādes valodā.

(5) Ja dokuments, kas nav Eiropas patenta pieteikuma sastāvdaļa, nav iesniegts Konvencijā paredzētā valodā vai, ja saskaņā ar Konvenciju paredzētais tulkojums nav iesniegts noteiktā termiņā, šāds dokuments tiek uzskatīts par nesaņemtu.

(6) Eiropas patenta pieteikumus publicē lietvedības valodā.

(7) Eiropas patenta specifikāciju publicē lietvedības valodā; specifikācija ietver pretenziju tulkojumu divās pārējās Eiropas Patentu iestādes oficiālajās valodās.

(8) Visās trijās oficiālajās Eiropas Patentu iestādes valodās publicē:

(a) Eiropas Patentu biļetenu;

(b) Eiropas Patentu iestādes Oficiālo vēstnesi.

(9) Ieraksti Eiropas Patentu reģistrā tiek izdarīti trīs oficiālajās Eiropas Patentu iestādes valodās. Šaubu gadījumos par autentisko tekstu uzskata tekstu lietvedības valodā.

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Par procedūru atbildīgās struktūrvienības

Lai īstenotu Konvencijā paredzētās procedūras, Eiropas patentu iestādē ir izveidotas šādas struktūrvienības:

(a) Pieteikumu saņemšanas sektors;

(b) Patentmeklējumu nodaļas;

(c) Ekspertīzes nodaļas;

(d) Iebildumu nodaļas;

(e) Juridiskā nodaļa;

(f) Apelācijas padomes;

(g) Paplašinātā apelācijas padome.

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Pieteikumu saņemšanas sektors

Pieteikumu saņemšanas sektors atrodas Hāgas filiālē. Tas ir atbildīgs par katra Eiropas patenta pieteikuma iesniegšanas un formālo prasību atbilsmes pārbaudi līdz brīdim, kad pieteicējs iesniedz lūgumu par ekspertīzi vai kad pieteicējs ir norādījis, ka viņš vēlas turpināt pieteikuma lietvedību saskaņā ar 96. panta 1. daļu. Tas ir atbildīgs arī par Eiropas patenta pieteikumu un Eiropas patentmeklējumu ziņojumu publicēšanu.

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Patentmeklējumu nodaļas

Patentmeklējumu nodaļas atrodas Hāgas filiālē. Tās ir atbildīgas par Eiropas patentmeklējumu ziņojumu sastādīšanu.

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Ekspertīzes nodaļas

(1) Ekspertīzes nodaļas ir atbildīgas par katra Eiropas patenta pieteikuma ekspertīzi.

(2) Ekspertīzes nodaļa sastāv no trim tehniskas kvalifikācijas ekspertiem. Tomēr parasti ekspertīzi līdz lēmuma pieņemšanai veic viens nodaļas eksperts. Pieteikuma mutiska izskatīšana notiek visu ekspertīzes nodaļas ekspertu klātbūtnē. Ja ekspertīzes nodaļa uzskata, ka lēmuma pieņemšana pēc būtības prasa, lai tajā piedalītos juridiski kvalificēts eksperts, tā var paplašināt ekspertīzes nodaļu, iekļaujot tās sastāvā juristu. Balsu paritātes gadījumā nodaļas vadītāja balss ir izšķiroša.

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Iebildumu nodaļas

(1) Iebildumu nodaļa ir atbildīga par iebildumu izskatīšanu, kas iesniegti pret Eiropas patentiem.

(2) Iebildumu nodaļu veido trīs tehniskas kvalifikācijas eksperti, vismaz divi no kuriem nav piedalījušies patenta piešķiršanas procedūrā, pret kuru ir iesniegts iebildums. Eksperts, kurš ir piedalījies patenta piešķiršanas procedūrā, nevar būt priekšsēdētājs. Pirms galīgā lēmuma pieņemšanas iebilduma lietā, Iebildumu nodaļa var uzticēt iebilduma izskatīšanu vienam no nodaļas ekspertiem. Mutiska izskatīšanas procedūra notiek visas nodaļas klātbūtnē. Ja Iebildumu nodaļa uzskata, ka lēmuma pieņemšana pēc būtības prasa, lai tajā piedalītos juridiski kvalificēts eksperts, tā var paplašināt Iebildumu nodaļu, iekļaujot tās sastāvā juristu, kurš nav piedalījies patenta piešķiršanas procedūrā. Balsu paritātes gadījumā nodaļas vadītāja balss ir izšķiroša.

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Juridiskā nodaļa

(1) Juridiskā nodaļa ir atbildīga par lēmumiem par ierakstu izdarīšanu Eiropas Patentu reģistrā un par pārstāvju ierakstīšanu profesionālo pārstāvju sarakstā vai dzēšanu no tā.

(2) Juridiskās nodaļas lēmumus pieņem viens juridiski kvalificēts loceklis.

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Apelācijas padomes

(1) Apelācijas padomes ir atbildīgas par apelāciju izskatīšanu, kas iesniegtas pret Pieteikumu saņemšanas sektora, Ekspertīzes nodaļu, Iebildumu nodaļu un Juridiskās nodaļas lēmumiem.

(2) Apelācijas pret Pieteikumu saņemšanas sektora vai Juridiskās nodaļas lēmumiem izskata Apelācijas padome, kas sastāv no trim juridiski kvalificētiem locekļiem.

(3) Apelācijas pret Ekspertīzes nodaļu lēmumiem izskata Apelācijas padome, ko veido:

(a) divi tehniski kvalificēti locekļi un viens juridiski kvalificēts loceklis, ja lēmums attiecas uz Eiropas patenta pieteikuma noraidīšanu vai Eiropas patenta piešķiršanu, un to bija pieņēmusi Ekspertīzes nodaļa, kas sastāvējusi no mazāk nekā četriem locekļiem;

(b) trīs tehniski kvalificēti locekļi un divi juridiski kvalificēti locekļi, ja lēmumu bija pieņēmusi Ekspertīzes nodaļa četru locekļu sastāvā, vai, ja Apelācijas padome uzskata, ka lietas būtība prasa šādu padomes sastāvu;

(c) trīs juridiski kvalificēti locekļi visos pārējos gadījumos.

(4) Apelācijas pret Iebildumu nodaļas lēmumiem izskata Apelācijas padome, ko veido:

(a) divi tehniski kvalificēti locekļi un viens juridiski kvalificēts loceklis, ja lēmumu bija pieņēmusi Iebildumu nodaļa triju locekļu sastāvā;

(b) trīs tehniski kvalificēti locekļi un divi juridiski kvalificēti locekļi, ja lēmumu bija pieņēmusi Iebildumu nodaļa četru locekļu sastāvā, vai, ja Apelācijas padome uzskata, ka lietas būtība prasa šādu padomes sastāvu.

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Paplašinātā apelācijas padome

(1) Paplašinātā apelācijas padome ir atbildīga par:

(a) tiesību būtības jautājumiem, kurus tai iesniedz Apelācijas padomes;

(b) atzinumu sniegšanu par tiesību jautājumiem, kurus tai iesniedz Eiropas Patentu iestādes prezidents saskaņā ar 112. panta nosacījumiem.

(2) Paplašinātā apelācijas padome pieņem lēmumus un sniedz atzinumus piecu juridiski kvalificētu locekļu un divu tehniski kvalificētu locekļu sastāvā. Viens no juridiski kvalificētajiem locekļiem ir priekšsēdētājs.

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Apelācijas padomju locekļu neatkarība

(1) Paplašinātās apelācijas padomes un Apelācijas padomju locekļus ieceļ uz pieciem gadiem, un viņus nevar šajā laikā atbrīvot no darba, ja vien atbrīvošanai nav nopietni iemesli, un, ja Administratīvā padome pēc Paplašinātās apelācijas padomes priekšlikuma nepieņem šādu lēmumu.

(2) Padomju locekļi nevar vienlaicīgi būt Pieteikumu saņemšanas sektora, Ekspertīzes nodaļu, Iebildumu nodaļu vai Juridiskās nodaļas darbinieki.

(3) Lēmumu pieņemšanā Apelācijas padomju locekļiem nav saistošas nekādas dienesta instrukcijas, un viņi ņem vērā vienīgi Konvenciju.

(4) Apelācijas padomju un Paplašinātās apelācijas padomes Procesuālos noteikumus pieņem saskaņā ar Reglamentu. Procesuālos noteikumus apstiprina Administratīvā padome.

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Apelācijas padomju locekļu atstatīšana un noraidīšana

(1) Apelācijas padomju vai Paplašinātās apelācijas padomes locekļi nevar piedalīties lietu izskatīšanā, kurās viņiem ir personiskas intereses, kurās viņi pirms tam bijuši iesaistīti kā kādas puses pārstāvji, vai kurās viņi piedalījušies lēmuma pieņemšanā, pret kuru tiek izskatīta apelācija.

(2) Ja Apelācijas padomes vai Paplašinātās apelācijas padomes loceklis uzskata, ka sakarā ar 1. daļā minētajiem apstākļiem vai sakarā ar jebkādu citu iemeslu viņam nevajadzētu piedalīties apelācijas izskatīšanā, viņš par to informē attiecīgo padomi.

(3) Ikviena puse 1. daļā minēto iemeslu dēļ vai sakarā ar aizdomām par ieinteresētību, var prasīt Apelācijas padomju vai Paplašinātās apelācijas padomes locekļu noraidīšanu. Noraidījums netiek pieņemts, ja puse, zinādama par noraidījuma iemesliem, jau sākusi piedalīties apelācijas procedūrā. Noraidījumu nevar pamatot ar locekļa nacionālo piederību.

(4) Šī panta 2. un 3. daļā minētajos gadījumos Apelācijas padomes un Paplašinātā apelācijas padome lemj par tālāko rīcību attiecīgā locekļa prombūtnē. Lai šādu lēmumu pieņemtu, loceklis, pret kuru ir izteikts noraidījums, tiek nomainīts ar viņa aizstājēju.

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Tehniskais atzinums

Pēc kompetentas nacionālās tiesas lūguma, kas izskata prasību par patenta pārkāpumu vai anulēšanu, Eiropas patentu iestādei par pienācīgu samaksu ir jāsniedz tehnisks atzinums par attiecīgo Eiropas patentu, par kuru notiek tiesvedība. Par šādu atzinumu atbildīga ir Ekspertīzes nodaļa.

IV nodaļa

Administratīvā padome

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Dalība

(1) Administratīvo padomi veido dalībvalstu pārstāvji un pārstāvju aizstājēji. Katra dalībvalsts ir tiesīga Administratīvajā padomē nozīmēt vienu pārstāvi un vienu pārstāvja aizstājēju.

(2) Katram Administratīvās padomes loceklim var būt padomnieki vai eksperti saskaņā ar Procesuālo noteikumu normām.

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Priekšsēdētājs

(1) Administratīvā padome ievēl priekšsēdētāju un priekšsēdētāja vietnieku no dalībvalstu pārstāvju un pārstāvju aizstājēju vidus. Priekšsēdētāja vietnieks ex officio aizvieto priekšsēdētāju, ja pēdējais nespēj veikt savus pienākumus.

(2) Priekšsēdētāju un priekšsēdētāja vietnieku ievēl amatā uz trim gadiem. Viņu var ievēlēt atkārtoti.

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Padome

(1) Ja ir vismaz astoņas dalībvalstis, Administratīvā padome var izveidot Valdi, kas sastāv no pieciem locekļiem.

(2) Administratīvās padomes priekšsēdētājs un priekšsēdētāja vietnieks ir Valdes locekļi ex officio; pārējos trīs locekļus ievēl Administratīvā padome.

(3) Administratīvās padomes ievēlēto locekļu darbības termiņš ir trīs gadi. Šis termiņš nav atjaunojams.

(4) Valde veic uzdevumus, kurus tai uzdod Administratīvā padome, saskaņā ar Procesuālajiem noteikumiem.

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Sēdes

(1) Administratīvās padomes sēdes sasauc priekšsēdētājs.

(2) Eiropas Patentu iestādes prezidents piedalās Administratīvās padomes sēdēs.

(3) Kārtējās sēdes Administratīvā padome sasauc vienu reizi gadā. Papildu sēdes var sasaukt pēc priekšsēdētāja iniciatīvas vai pēc vienas trešdaļas dalībvalstu lūguma.

(4) Administratīvās padomes sēdes notiek saskaņā ar iepriekš izstrādātu darbakārtību un Procesuālajiem noteikumiem.

(5) Pagaidu darbakārtība ietver visus jautājumus, kurus lūdz iekļaut dalībvalsts saskaņā ar Procesuālajiem noteikumiem.

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Novērotāju klātbūtne

(1) Pasaules Intelektuālā īpašuma organizācija apmeklē Administratīvās padomes sēdes saskaņā ar līguma nosacījumiem, kas ir noslēgts starp Eiropas Patentu organizāciju un Pasaules Intelektuālā īpašuma organizāciju.

(2) Cita starpvalstu organizācija, kurai ir uzticēta starptautisko procedūru veikšana patentu jomā, ar kuru Organizācija ir noslēgusi līgumu, apmeklē Administratīvās padomes sēdes saskaņā ar šī līguma nosacījumiem.

(3) Administratīvā padome var uzaicināt jebkuru citu starpvalstu organizāciju un nevalstisku organizāciju, kuras darbībā Organizācija ir ieinteresēta, apmeklēt tās sēdes, kurās tiek apspriesti abpusēji interesējoši jautājumi.

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Administratīvās padomes darba valodas

(1) Administratīvās padomes sēdēs lieto angļu, franču un vācu valodu.

(2) Administratīvajai padomei iesniedzamos dokumentus un sēžu protokolus raksta visās trijās 1. daļā minētajās valodās.

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Personāls, telpas un aprīkojums

Eiropas patentu iestāde nodod Administratīvās padomes un katras tās izveidotās struktūras rīcībā tādu personālu, telpas un aprīkojumu, kāds ir nepieciešams to pienākumu veikšanai.

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Administratīvās padomes kompetence konkrētās lietās

(1) Administratīvās padomes kompetencē ir grozīt šādus Konvencijas noteikumus:

(a) Konvencijā noteiktos termiņus; uz 94. pantā noteikto termiņu to attiecina tikai gadījumos, kas paredzēti 95. pantā;

(b) Reglamentu.

(2) Administratīvā padome ir kompetenta saskaņā ar Konvenciju, pieņemt vai grozīt šādus Noteikumus:

(a) Noteikumus par finansēm;

(b) Eiropas Patentu iestādes Dienesta noteikumus pastāvīgajiem darbiniekiem un citu darbinieku darba noteikumus, pastāvīgo darbinieku un pārējo darbinieku algu līmeni, kā arī papildu labumu veidus un piešķiršanas noteikumus;

(c) Pensiju shēmas noteikumus un katru attiecīgo esošo pensiju palielināšanu, kas atbilst algu palielinājumam;

(d) Noteikumus par maksām;

(e) savus Procesuālos noteikumus.

(3) Neatkarīgi no 18. panta 2. daļā minētā, Administratīvā padome ir kompetenta saskaņā ar savu pieredzi noteikt, ka zināmu kategoriju lietas Ekspertīzes nodaļās lemj viens tehniski kvalificēts loceklis. Šādu lēmumu var atcelt.

(4) Administratīvā padome ir kompetenta pilnvarot Eiropas Patentu iestādes prezidentu vest sarunas, un ar tās piekrišanu noslēgt līgumus Eiropas Patentu Organizācijas vārdā ar valstīm, starpvaldību organizācijām un ar dokumentācijas centriem, kas tiek izveidoti ar šīm organizācijām šādu līgumu ietvaros.

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Balsstiesības

(1) Balsstiesības Administratīvajā padomē pieder dalībvalstīm.

(2) Katrai dalībvalstij saskaņā ar 36. pantu ir viena balss.

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Balsošanas noteikumi

(1) Administratīvās padomes lēmumus, izņemot tos, kas minēti šā panta 2. daļā, pieņem ar pārstāvēto un balsojušo dalībvalstu vienkāršu vairākumu.

(2) Ar trīs ceturtdaļu pārstāvēto un balsojušo dalībvalstu balsu vairākumu pieņem Administratīvās padomes lēmumus, kas tai uzticēti saskaņā ar 7. pantu, 11. panta 1. daļu, 33. pantu, 39. panta 1. daļu, 40. panta 2. un 4. daļu, 46. pantu, 87. pantu, 95. pantu, 134. pantu, 151. panta 3. daļu, 154. panta 2. daļu, 155. panta 2. daļu, 156. pantu, 157. panta 2. līdz 4. daļu, 160. panta 1. daļas otro teikumu, 162. pantu, 163. pantu, 166. pantu, 167. pantu un 172. pantu.

(3) Atturēšanos neuzskata par balsojumu.

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Balsu skaitīšana

(1) Gadījumos, kad pieņem vai groza Noteikumus par maksām, kas paredz dalībvalstu finansiālās līdzdalības palielināšanos, kad pieņem Organizācijas budžetu un tā grozījumus, vai pieņem papildbudžetu, katra dalībvalsts var prasīt, lai pirmajai balsošanai, kurā katrai dalībvalstij ir viena balss, tūlīt seko otra balsošana, kurā balsstiesības tiek dotas 2. daļā norādītajām valstīm. Lēmumu nosaka otrās balsošanas rezultāts.

(2) Katras dalībvalsts balsu skaitu otrajai balsošanai aprēķina šādi:

(a) 40. panta 3. un 4. daļā noteikto katras dalībvalsts finansiālās līdzdalības procentuālo lielumu saskaņā ar speciālo finansiālās līdzdalības skalu reizina ar dalībvalstu skaitu un dala ar pieci;

(b) šādi iegūtu balsu skaitu noapaļo uz augšu līdz nākamajam veselajam skaitlim;

(c) iegūtajam skaitlim pieskaita piecas papildbalsis;

(d) tomēr nevienas dalībvalsts balsu skaits nevar pārsniegt trīsdesmit balsis.

V nodaļa

Finansēšanas noteikumi

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Izdevumu segšana

Organizācijas izdevumus sedz:

(a) no pašas Organizācijas līdzekļiem;

(b) no dalībvalstu iemaksām, kas saņemtas kā Eiropas patentu spēkā uzturēšanas maksas šajās dalībvalstīs;

(c) ja nepieciešams, no dalībvalstu īpašiem dalībmaksājumiem;

(d) no 146. pantā paredzētiem ieņēmumiem.

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Organizācijas pašas līdzekļi

Organizācijas pašas līdzekļus veido maksājumi, kas noteikti Konvencijā, kā arī visi tās ieņēmumi neatkarīgi no to rakstura.

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Dalībvalstu maksājumi no Eiropas patentu uzturēšanas maksām

(1) Katra dalībvalsts maksā Organizācijai tādu daļu no katra Eiropas patenta spēkā uzturēšanas maksas šajā dalībvalstī, kādu nosaka Administratīvā padome; šī daļa nevar pārsniegt septiņdesmit piecus procentus un tā ir vienāda visām dalībvalstīm. Gadījumos, kad šī daļa ir mazāka par Administratīvās padomes noteikto fiksēto unificēto minimumu, dalībvalsts Organizācijai maksā šo minimumu.

(2) Katra dalībvalsts sniedz Organizācijai tādu informāciju, kādu Administratīvā padome uzskata par nepieciešamu, lai noteiktu tās iemaksu lielumu.

(3) Šo iemaksu termiņus nosaka Administratīvā padome.

(4) Ja pilna iemaksa nav izdarīta noteiktajā termiņā, dalībvalstij sākot no termiņa iestāšanās dienas jāmaksā procenti par neiemaksāto daļu.

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Maksu un maksājumu līmenis — Īpašā finansiālā līdzdalība

(1) Konvencijas 38. pantā paredzētās maksas un 39. pantā paredzētā daļa tiek noteikta tādā līmenī, lai ieņēmumi no šīm maksām ļautu izveidot sabalansētu Organizācijas budžetu.

(2) Ja Organizācija nespēj sabalansēt budžetu tādā veidā, kā paredzēts 1. daļā, tad dalībvalstis veic īpašu finansiālu līdzdalības iemaksu par attiecīgo atskaites periodu, kuras lielumu nosaka Administratīvā padome.

(3) Īpašās finansiālās līdzdalības iemaksas nosaka katrai dalībvalstij, vadoties no pēdējā gadā iesniegto patenta pieteikumu skaita, izņemot vienu iepriekšējo gadu pirms Konvencijas spēkā stāšanās, un to aprēķina šādi:

(a) viena puse no patenta pieteikumu skaita, kas iesniegti šajā dalībvalstī;

(b) viena puse no nākamā lielākā patenta pieteikumu skaita, kurus iesniegušas šīs valsts fiziskas un juridiskas personas citās dalībvalstīs.

Tomēr iemaksas lielums, kas jāpārskaita tām dalībvalstīm, kurās iesniegto patentu pieteikumu skaits pārsniedz 25 000, jāņem kopumā un jāizveido jauna iemaksu sadalījuma skala atkarībā no šajās valstīs iesniegto patenta pieteikumu skaita.

(4) Ja kādas dalībvalsts pozīciju iemaksu sadalījuma skalā nevar noteikt saskaņā ar 3. daļas nosacījumiem, tad Administratīvā padome ar attiecīgās valsts piekrišanu katrai konkrētajai dalībvalstij nosaka tās pozīciju šajā skalā.

(5) Konvencijas 39. panta 3. un 4. daļu piemēro ar attiecīgajām izmaiņām (mutatis mutandis) arī īpašajai finansiālās līdzdalības iemaksai.

(6) Īpašās finansiālās līdzdalības iemaksu atmaksā kopā ar procentiem, kuru likmes ir vienādas visām dalībvalstīm. Atmaksāšanu veic tādā apjomā un kārtībā, kā tas paredzēts šim mērķim budžetā; paredzēto atmaksas summu sadala starp dalībvalstīm saskaņā ar 3. un 4. daļā minēto skalu.

(7) Īpašās finansiālās līdzdalības iemaksas, kas pārskaitītas katrā atskaites periodā, atmaksā pilnā apjomā pirms tiek pārskaitīta ikviena šāda līdzdalības iemaksa vai tās daļa par nākamo atskaites periodu.

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Priekšiemaksas

(1) Pēc Eiropas patentu iestādes prezidenta lūguma dalībvalstis veic savu maksājumu un līdzdalības iemaksu priekšiemaksu Organizācijai tādā apmērā un termiņā, kādu nosaka Administratīvā padome. Šādu priekšiemaksu sadala proporcionāli katras dalībvalsts iemaksas lielumam attiecīgajam atskaites periodam.

(2) Konvencijas 39. panta 3. un 4. daļu piemēro mutatis mutandis priekšiemaksām.

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Budžets

(1) Organizācijas ieņēmumi un izdevumi katram atskaites periodam ar sadalījumu pa posteņiem tiek atspoguļoti budžetā. Ja nepieciešams, kā budžeta grozījumi vai papildbudžets.

(2) Budžetam jābūt sabalansētam ieņēmumu un izdevumu daļā.

(3) Budžetu veido Noteikumos par finansēm paredzētajās uzskaites vienībās.

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Izdevumu pilnvarojums

(1) Budžeta izdevumus apstiprina katram atskaites periodam, ja Finansēšanas reglaments neparedz citādu kārtību.

(2) Finansēšanas reglamentā paredzētos gadījumos līdzekļu piešķīrumus, izņemot personāla apmaksai paredzētos, kas nav izlietoti atskaites perioda beigās, var izmantot līdz nākamā atskaites perioda beigām, bet ne vēlāk.

(3) Līdzekļu piešķīrumus paredz dažādos posteņos, atkarībā no to veida un izdevumu mērķa, un tos, ja nepieciešams, var sīkāk sadalīt apakšposteņos saskaņā ar Finansēšanas reglamentu.

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Līdzekļu piešķīrumi neparedzētiem izdevumiem

(1) Organizācijas budžetā var paredzēt piešķīrumus neparedzētiem izdevumiem.

(2) Šādus piešķīrumus var piešķirt ar Administratīvās padomes piekrišanu.

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Atskaites periods

Atskaites periods sākas 1. janvārī un beidzas 31. decembrī.

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Budžeta sagatavošana un pieņemšana

(1) Eiropas Patentu iestādes prezidents budžeta projektu iesniedz Administratīvajai padomei ne vēlāk kā noteikts Finansēšanas reglamentā.

(2) Budžetu, tā grozījumus un papildinājumus pieņem Administratīvā padome.

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Pagaidu budžets

(1) Ja, sākoties atskaites periodam, Administratīvā padome budžetu nav vēl pieņēmusi, tad saskaņā ar Finansēšanas reglamentā paredzēto kārtību ik mēnesi katram postenim var izdot līdzekļus ne vairāk par vienu divpadsmito daļu no summas, kas šim postenim bija piešķirta iepriekšējā atskaites periodā, ar nosacījumu, ka šie līdzekļi, kas ir Eiropas patentu iestādes prezidenta rīcībā, nepārsniedz vienu divpadsmito daļu no budžeta projektā paredzētās summas.

(2) Administratīvā padome var, ievērojot citus 1. daļā minētos nosacījumus, pilnvarot līdzekļu piešķīrumus lielākus par vienu divpadsmito daļu no visiem piešķīrumiem.

(3) Konvencijas 37. panta (b) punktā minētos maksājumus tam gadam, kuram ir iesniegts budžeta projekts, turpina veikt pēc pagaidu aprēķiniem saskaņā ar 39. panta nosacījumiem par iepriekšējo gadu.

(4) Dalībvalstis veic īpašās finansiālās līdzdalības iemaksas, kas nepieciešamas, lai nodrošinātu 1. un 2. daļas izpildi, katru mēnesi pēc pagaidu aprēķiniem un saskaņā ar 40. panta 3. un 4.daļā minēto skalu. Šīm iemaksām piemēro 39. panta 4. daļas noteikumus mutatis mutandis.

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Budžeta izpilde

(1) Eiropas Patentu iestādes prezidents atbild par budžeta, budžeta grozījumu un papildus budžeta izpildi piešķirto līdzekļu robežās.

(2) Budžeta ietvaros Eiropas Patentu iestādes prezidents var pārdalīt līdzekļus starp dažādiem posteņiem un apakšposteņiem tādās robežās un pie tādiem nosacījumiem, kas paredzēti Finansēšanas reglamentā.

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Revīzija

(1) Organizācijas ieņēmumu un izdevumu kontus un grāmatvedības bilanci izvērtē revidenti, kuru neatkarība nerada šaubas un kurus nozīmē Administratīvā padome uz piecu gadu termiņu, kuru var atjaunot vai pagarināt.

(2) Revīzijai, kas tiek veikta uz dokumentu pārbaudes pamata un, ja nepieciešams, uz vietas (in situ), jānoskaidro, vai visi ieņēmumi ir saņemti un visi izdevumi veikti likumīgi un pienācīgā veidā un vai finanšu vadība ir saprātīga. Revidenti sastāda ziņojumu pēc katra atskaites perioda beigām.

(3) Eiropas patentu iestādes prezidents katru gadu iesniedz Administratīvai padomei atskaiti par iepriekšējo atskaites periodu par budžetu un grāmatvedības bilanci, parādot Organizācijas aktīvus un pasīvus, kopā ar revidentu ziņojumu.

(4) Administratīvā padome apstiprina gada atskaiti kopā ar revidentu ziņojumu un dod iestādes prezidentam novērtējumu par budžeta izpildi.

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Finansēšanas reglaments

Finansēšanas reglaments detalizēti nosaka:

(a) budžeta veidošanas un izpildes procedūru un kontu veidošanas un revīzijas procedūru;

(b) metodi un procedūru, saskaņā ar kuru dalībvalstis dod iespēju Organizācijai izmantot maksājumus un līdzdalības iemaksas, kuras tās veic saskaņā ar 37. pantu, un priekšiemaksas saskaņā ar 41. pantu;

(c) noteikumus par grāmatvedības un kases darbinieku atbildību un viņu pārraudzības kārtību;

(d) 39., 40. un 47. pantā minētās procentu likmes;

(e) 146. pantā minēto līdzdalības iemaksu aprēķina metodi;

(f) Administratīvās padomes izveidojamās Budžeta un finanšu komitejas struktūru un pienākumus.

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Noteikumi par maksām

Noteikumi par maksām nosaka maksu veidus un lielumu, kādā tās jāmaksā.

II daļa

PATENTU MATERIĀLĀS TIESĪBAS

I nodaļa

Patentspēja

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Patentspējīgi izgudrojumi

(1) Eiropas patentus piešķir izgudrojumiem, kas ir rūpnieciski izmantojami, jauni un kam ir izgudrojuma līmenis.

(2) Par izgudrojumiem 1. daļas izpratnē citstarp neuzskata:

(a) atklājumus, zinātniskas teorijas un matemātiskas metodes;

(b) estētiskus risinājumus (dizaina darbus);

(c) intelektuālu darbību veikšanas, komercdarbības realizēšanas vai spēļu spēlēšanas shēmas, noteikumus un paņēmienus, kā arī datorprogrammas;

(d) informācijas sniegšanas paņēmienus.

(3) Objekti un darbības, kas minētas 2. daļā, tiek izslēgtas no patentspējīgo izgudrojumu loka tikai tiktāl, ciktāl Eiropas patenta pieteikums vai Eiropas patents attiecas uz šādu objektu vai darbību kā tādu.

(4) Cilvēka vai dzīvnieku terapeitiskās vai ķirurģiskās ārstēšanas un diagnostikas metodes, kas tiek veiktas ar cilvēka vai dzīvnieku ķermeni, neuzskata par izgudrojumiem, kurus var rūpnieciski izmantot 1. daļas izpratnē. Šo noteikumu neattiecina uz produktiem, arī uz vielām vai kompozīcijām, kuras izmanto šajās metodēs.

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Izņēmumi no patentaizsardzības

Eiropas patentus nepiešķir:

(a) izgudrojumiem, kuru publiskošana vai izmantošana ir pretrunā ar sabiedrisko kārtību vai morāli (ordre public), taču šādu lēmumu nedrīkst pieņemt, pamatojoties tikai uz faktu, ka šāda izmantošana ir aizliegta ar likumu vai administratīvu aktu dažās vai visās dalībvalstīs;

(b) augu vai dzīvnieku šķirnēm, vai būtībā bioloģiskiem augu vai dzīvnieku šķirņu iegūšanas paņēmieniem; šo noteikumu nepiemēro mikrobioloģiskiem paņēmieniem un to rezultātā iegūtiem produktiem.

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Novitāte

(1) Izgudrojumu uzskata par jaunu, ja tas nav tehnikas līmeņa daļa.

(2) Tehnikas līmenis satur jebkuras zināšanas, kas ir publiski pieejamas rakstiski vai mutiski, ir publiski lietotas vai izpaustas jebkurā citā veidā pirms Eiropas patenta pieteikuma datuma.

(3) Bez tam, arī iesniegtie Eiropas patenta pieteikumi, kuru pieteikuma datums ir pirms 2. daļā minētā datuma un kuri ir publicēti saskaņā ar 93. pantu šajā datumā vai pēc šī datuma, tiek uzskatīti par tehnikas līmeņa daļu.

(4) Šī panta 3. daļu piemēro tikai tad, ja dalībvalsts, kas ir norādīta vēlākajā pieteikumā, ir bijusi norādīta arī agrākajā, publicētajā pieteikumā.

(5) Šī panta 1. līdz 4. daļas nosacījumus par izslēgšanu no patentējamiem izgudrojumiem neattiecina uz vielām vai kompozīcijām, kas zināmas no tehnikas līmeņa, ja tās paredzētas lietošanai 52. panta 4. daļā noteiktajās metodēs, ja pati to lietošana minētajās metodēs nav tehnikas līmeņa daļa.

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Publiska informācija, kas nekaitē novitātei

(1) Konvencijas 54. pantu nepiemēro, ja izgudrojuma publiskošana ir notikusi ne agrāk kā sešus mēnešus pirms Eiropas patenta pieteikuma datuma un ja šī publiskošana ir:

(a) acīmredzama ļaunprātība pret pieteicēju vai tā tiesisko priekšteci, vai

(b) ja pieteicējs vai viņa tiesiskais priekštecis ir demonstrējis izgudrojumu oficiālā vai tai pielīdzinātā, starptautiskā izstādē, kas organizēta saskaņā ar 1928. gada 22. novembrī Parīzē parakstīto Starptautisko izstāžu konvenciju, ar jaunākajiem grozījumiem 1972. gada 30. novembrī.

(2) Šī panta 1. daļas (b) punkta gadījumos 1. daļas nosacījumus piemēro tikai tad, ja pieteicējs, iesniedzot Eiropas patenta pieteikumu, paziņo, ka izgudrojums ir bijis demonstrēts šādā izstādē, un iesniedz šo faktu apliecinošu sertifikātu saskaņā ar Reglamenta nosacījumiem.

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Izgudrojuma līmenis

Tiek uzskatīts, ka izgudrojumam piemīt izgudrojuma līmenis, ja, ņemot vērā tehnikas līmeni, tas nav acīmredzams lietpratējam attiecīgajā tehnikas jomā. Ja tehnikas līmeni veido arī dokumenti, kas minēti 54. panta 3. daļā, tad šie dokumenti, vērtējot izgudrojuma līmeni, netiek ņemti vērā.

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Rūpnieciska izmantošana

Izgudrojumu uzskata par rūpnieciski izmantojamu, ja to var lietot jebkurā tautsaimniecības nozarē, arī lauksaimniecībā.

II nodaļa

Personas, kas ir tiesīgas iesniegt pieteikumu un saņemt Eiropas patentu — Izgudrotāja minēšana

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Tiesības iesniegt Eiropas patenta pieteikumu

Eiropas patenta pieteikumu var iesniegt jebkura fiziska vai juridiska persona, vai jebkura saskaņā ar attiecīgiem likumiem juridiskai personai pielīdzināma persona.

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Vairāki pieteicēji

Eiropas patenta pieteikumu var iesniegt vairāki pieteicēji kā koppieteicēji, vai arī divi vai vairāki atšķirīgi pieteicēji dažādām norādītajām valstīm.

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Tiesības uz Eiropas patentu

(1) Tiesības uz Eiropas patentu pieder izgudrotājam vai tā tiesību pārņēmējam. Ja izgudrotājs ir darba ņēmējs, tad tiesības uz Eiropas patentu nosaka saskaņā ar tās valsts likumu, kurā darba ņēmējs ir pamatdarbā; ja nevar noteikt valsti, kurā darba ņēmējs ir pamatdarbā, tad tiesības uz patentu nosaka tās valsts likums, kurā atrodas tas darba devēja uzņēmums, kurā darba ņēmējs strādā.

(2) Ja divas vai vairāk personas radījušas izgudrojumu neatkarīgi viena no otras, tad tiesības uz Eiropas patentu pieder tai personai, kuras Eiropas patenta pieteikumam ir agrāks pieteikuma datums; tomēr šo noteikumu piemēro tikai gadījumos, ja šis pirmais pieteikums ir bijis publicēts saskaņā ar 93. panta noteikumiem un tas ir spēkā tikai tajās dalībvalstīs, kas ir norādītas publicētajā pieteikumā.

(3) Lietvedības vajadzībām Eiropas Patentu iestādē tiek uzskatīts, ka pieteicējs ir tiesīgs izlietot tiesības uz Eiropas patentu.

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Tādu personu Eiropas patenta pieteikumi, kam nav tiesību uz Eiropas patentu

(1) Ja ir galīgs tiesas spriedums par to, ka tiesības uz Eiropas patentu ir citai personai nevis tai, kas minēta 60. panta 1. daļā, tad šī persona var trīs mēnešu laikā pēc galīgā tiesas sprieduma stāšanās spēkā un, ja Eiropas patents vēl nav piešķirts, tad attiecībā uz tām Eiropas patenta pieteikumā norādītajām dalībvalstīm, kurās šis spriedums ir pasludināts vai tiek atzīts, vai tas ir jāatzīst saskaņā ar Konvencijai pievienoto Protokolu par atzīšanu:

(a) turpināt pieteikuma lietvedību pieteicēja vietā kā par savu pieteikumu;

(b) iesniegt jaunu Eiropas patenta pieteikumu par to pašu izgudrojumu vai

(c) lūgt pieteikumu noraidīt.

(2) Konvencijas 76. panta 1. daļas nosacījumus piemēro ar attiecīgajām izmaiņām (mutatis mutandis) jaunajam pieteikumam, kas iesniegts saskaņā ar 1. daļu.

(3) Šī panta 1. daļas nosacījumu izpildes procedūru, īpašos nosacījumus attiecībā uz jauno pieteikumu, kas iesniegts saskaņā ar 1. daļu un termiņus pieteikuma, patentmeklējuma un valstu norādīšanas maksu samaksai nosaka Reglaments.

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Izgudrotāja tiesības būt minētam

Izgudrotājam ir tiesības būt nosauktam atsevišķi no Eiropas patenta pieteicēja vai īpašnieka Eiropas Patentu iestādei iesniedzamajos dokumentos.

III nodaļa

Eiropas patenta un Eiropas patenta pieteikuma juridiskais spēks

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Eiropas patenta termiņš

(1) Eiropas patents ir spēkā 20 gadus no pieteikuma datuma.

(2) Iepriekšējās daļas nosacījums neierobežo dalībvalstu tiesības pagarināt Eiropas patenta termiņu vai piešķirt tam atbilstošu turpmāku aizsardzību tūlīt pēc patenta darbības termiņa beigām saskaņā ar tiem pašiem nosacījumiem, kādus piemēro nacionālajiem patentiem:

(a) ja valstī ir kara vai līdzīgi ārkārtas apstākļi;

(b) ja Eiropas patenta objekts ir produkts vai paņēmiens produkta ražošanai, vai produkta lietojums, kam pirms laišanas tirgū valstī ir likumā noteikta administratīvas atļaujas saņemšana.

(3) Šī panta 2. daļas noteikumus piemēro ar attiecīgajām izmaiņām (mutatis mutandis) Eiropas patentiem, kas piešķirti kopā attiecībā uz dalībvalstu grupu saskaņā ar 142. pantu.

(4) Dalībvalsts, kas ļauj pagarināt patenta termiņu vai piešķir atbilstošo aizsardzību saskaņā ar 2. daļas (b) punktu, var, pamatojoties uz līgumu ar Organizāciju, uzticēt Eiropas Patentu iestādei uzdevumus, kas saistīti ar attiecīgo noteikumu īstenošanu.

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Eiropas patenta piešķirtās tiesības

(1) Eiropas patents no dienas, kad publicēts paziņojums par tā piešķiršanu, katrā dalībvalstī, attiecībā uz kuru tas ir izsniegts, piešķir patenta īpašniekam tādas pat tiesības kā šajā valstī piešķirts nacionālais patents.

(2) Ja Eiropas patenta objekts ir paņēmiens, patenta aizsardzība attiecas arī uz produktiem, kas tiek tieši iegūti ar šo paņēmienu.

(3) Eiropas patentu pārkāpumu gadījumos piemērojami nacionālie likumi.

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Eiropas patenta specifikācijas tulkojums

(1) Katra dalībvalsts var noteikt, ka gadījumos, kad Eiropas Patentu iestāde piešķir Eiropas patentu vai groza Eiropas patentu attiecībā uz šo valsti valodā, kas nav šīs valsts oficiālā valoda, patenta pieteicējs vai īpašnieks iesniedz šīs valsts rūpnieciskā īpašuma aizsardzības iestādē patenta tulkojumu valsts valodā vai šajā valstī noteiktā valodā. Tulkojuma iesniegšanas termiņš ir trīs mēneši no dienas, kad Eiropas Patentu biļetenā ir publicēta ziņa par Eiropas patenta piešķiršanu vai grozīšanu, ja vien valsts nenosaka garāku termiņu.

(2) Katra dalībvalsts, kas ir pieņēmusi 1. daļā paredzētos nosacījumus, var noteikt, ka pieteicējam vai patenta īpašniekam šajā valstī noteiktā termiņā jāmaksā par tulkojuma publicēšanu.

(3) Katra dalībvalsts var noteikt, ka 1. un 2. daļā paredzēto nosacījumu neizpildes gadījumā, Eiropas patents šajā valstī tiek uzskatīts par spēkā neesošu ab initio.

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Eiropas patenta pieteikuma un nacionālā patenta pieteikuma līdzvērtība

Eiropas patenta pieteikums, kuram ir piešķirts pieteikuma datums, norādītajās dalībvalstīs ir līdzvērtīgs nacionālam patenta pieteikumam un attiecīgajos gadījumos ar Eiropas patenta pieteikumam pieprasīto prioritāti.

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Tiesības, ko piešķir Eiropas patenta pieteikums pēc tā publicēšanas

(1) Eiropas patenta pieteikums no pieteikuma publicēšanas dienas saskaņā ar 93. pantu piešķir pieteicējam 64. pantā minēto pagaidu aizsardzību dalībvalstīs, kas norādītas pieteikuma publikācijā.

(2) Katra dalībvalsts var noteikt, ka Eiropas patenta pieteikums nepiešķir 64. pantā minēto aizsardzību. Tomēr aizsardzība, kas rodas no Eiropas patenta pieteikuma publicēšanas nevar būt mazāka par to, kuru piešķir attiecīgās valsts likums nacionālajiem obligāti publicējamiem patenta pieteikumiem, kam nav veikta ekspertīze. Jebkurā gadījumā, katra valsts nodrošina vismaz to, ka no Eiropas patenta pieteikuma publicēšanas dienas pieteicējs var prasīt apstākļiem atbilstošu atlīdzību no jebkuras personas, kas ir lietojusi izgudrojumu šajā valstī gadījumos, kad šī persona saskaņā ar nacionālo likumdošanu būtu atbildīga par patenta pārkāpšanu.

(3) Katra dalībvalsts, kuras oficiālā valoda nav lietvedības valoda, var noteikt, ka pagaidu aizsardzība saskaņā ar 1. un 2. daļu neiestājas līdz brīdim, kamēr pretenziju tulkojums vienā no valsts oficiālajām valodām vai valsts noteiktajā valodā pēc pieteicēja izvēles:

(a) netiek publiskots nacionālajā likumdošanā paredzētā veidā, vai

(b) netiek darīts zināms personai, kas lieto izgudrojumu šajā valstī.

(4) Eiropas patenta pieteikumam nekādā gadījumā nav 1. un 2. daļā minētā spēka, ja tas ir atsaukts, tiek uzskatīts par atsauktu vai galīgi noraidīts. Šie paši nosacījumi attiecas arī uz Eiropas patenta pieteikuma spēku tajās norādītajās dalībvalstīs, kas ir atsauktas vai tiek uzskatītas par atsauktām.

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Eiropas patenta noraidīšanas sekas

Eiropas patenta pieteikumam un uz tā pamata piešķirtajam Eiropas patentam nav 64. un 67. pantā minētā spēka no sākuma brīža tādā apjomā, kādā tas ir noraidīts iebilduma procedūrā.

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Aizsardzības apjoms

(1) Tiesību apjomu, ko piešķir Eiropas patents vai Eiropas patenta pieteikums nosaka pretenzijas. Izgudrojuma apraksts un zīmējumi tiek izmantoti pretenziju iztulkošanai.

(2) Laika periodā līdz Eiropas patenta piešķiršanai Eiropas patenta pieteikuma tiesību apjomu nosaka jaunākās iesniegtās pretenzijas, kas ir publicētas saskaņā ar 93. pantu. Tomēr piešķirtais Eiropas patents vai iebilduma procedūrā grozītais Eiropas patents retrospektīvi nosaka Eiropas patenta pieteikuma tiesību apjomu, ja vien šis tiesību apjoms ar to netiek paplašināts.

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Eiropas patenta pieteikuma vai Eiropas patenta autentiskais teksts

(1) Eiropas patenta pieteikuma vai Eiropas patenta teksts lietvedības valodā ir autentiskais teksts jebkurā lietvedības stadijā Eiropas Patentu iestādē un katrā dalībvalstī.

(2) Tomēr gadījumos, kas minēti 14. panta 2. daļā, lietvedības oriģinālteksts Eiropas Patentu iestādē veido pamatu, ja jānosaka, vai pieteikuma vai patenta objekts iziet ārpus sākotnēji iesniegtā pieteikuma satura ietvariem.

(3) Katra dalībvalsts var noteikt, ka tulkojums šīs valsts oficiālajā valodā kā to paredz Konvencija, šajā valstī tiek uzskatīts par autentisko tekstu, izņemot anulēšanas procedūru, ja pieteikuma vai patenta tulkojums piešķir šaurāku tiesību apjomu nekā teksts lietvedības valodā.

(4) Katra dalībvalsts, kas pieņem 3. daļas nosacījumus:

(a) ļauj pieteicējam vai patenta īpašniekam iesniegt labotu Eiropas patenta pieteikuma vai Eiropas patenta tulkojumu. Šādam labotam tulkojumam nav nekādu tiesisku seku, ja nav izpildītas 65. panta 2. daļas un 67. panta 3. daļas prasības mutatis mutandis;

(b) var noteikt, ka katra persona, kas šajā valstī labticīgi lieto izgudrojumu vai ir veikusi nopietnus sagatavošanās darbus izgudrojuma lietošanai, un šāda lietošana nav patenta pieteikuma pārkāpums saskaņā ar sākotnēji iesniegto tulkojumu, drīkst turpināt šādu lietošanu arī pēc labotā tulkojuma spēkā stāšanās savā uzņēmējdarbībā vai tās vajadzībām bez atlīdzības.

IV nodaļa

Eiropas patenta pieteikums kā īpašuma objekts

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Tiesību nodibināšana un nodošana

Tiesības uz Eiropas patenta pieteikumu var nodibināt vai nodot attiecībā uz vienu vai vairākām norādītajām dalībvalstīm.

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Tiesību nodošana

Tiesības uz Eiropas patenta pieteikumu nodod uz rakstiska līguma pamata, kuru paraksta abas līgumslēdzējpuses.

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Līgumiskās licences

Eiropas patenta pieteikumu var licencēt attiecībā uz visām norādītajām dalībvalstīm vai uz daļu no norādītajām dalībvalstīm.

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Piemērojamais likums

Ja Konvencijā nav noteikts citādi, Eiropas patenta pieteikumam kā īpašuma objektam katrā dalībvalstī vai attiecībā uz katru dalībvalsti ir piemērojams tas pats likums kā nacionālajiem patenta pieteikumiem.

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EIROPAS PATENTA PIETEIKUMS

I nodaļa

Eiropas patenta pieteikumam noteiktās prasības un izskatīšanas procedūra

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Eiropas patenta pieteikuma iesniegšana

(1) Eiropas patenta pieteikumu var iesniegt:

(a) Eiropas Patentu iestādē Minhenē vai tās filiālē Hāgā, vai

(b) ja dalībvalsts likums to ļauj, šīs valsts centrālajā rūpnieciskā īpašuma iestādē vai citā tam pilnvarotā iestādē. Šādā veidā iesniegtam Eiropas patenta pieteikumam ir tāds pats spēks kā, ja tas būtu iesniegts šajā pašā datumā Eiropas Patentu iestādē.

(2) Šī panta 1. daļas nosacījumi neliedz piemērot likumiskus vai administratīvus noteikumus, kuri katrā dalībvalstī:

(a) tiek piemēroti izgudrojumiem, kurus saskaņā ar to būtību, nedrīkst izpaust uz ārvalstīm bez kompetentas valsts iestādes iepriekšējas atļaujas, vai

(b) nosaka, ka katru pieteikumu vispirms ir jāiesniedz nacionālajā iestādē vai to drīkst tieši iesniegt citā iestādē ar iepriekšēju atļauju.

(3) Neviena dalībvalsts nevar paredzēt vai atļaut izdalītā Eiropas pieteikuma iesniegšanu 1. daļas (b) punktā paredzētajā kārtībā.

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Izdalītais Eiropas pieteikums

(1) Izdalītais Eiropas pieteikums jāiesniedz tieši Eiropas Patentu iestādē Minhenē vai tās filiālē Hāgā. To var iesniegt tikai uz objektu, kas neiziet ārpus sākotnēji iesniegtā pieteikuma apjoma; ja ir izpildīti šie nosacījumi, izdalīto pieteikumu uzskata par iesniegtu sākotnējā pieteikuma datumā un tam ir tās pašas prioritātes tiesības.

(2) Izdalītajā Eiropas pieteikumā nevar norādīt dalībvalstis, kas nav bijušas norādītas sākotnējā pieteikumā.

(3) Īstenojot 1. daļas nosacījumus par izdalīto pieteikumu, jāievēro Reglamentā paredzētā procedūra un īpašie nosacījumi par samaksas termiņu pieteikuma, patentmeklējuma un valstu norādīšanas maksām.

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Eiropas patenta pieteikumu pārsūtīšana

(1) Dalībvalsts centrālajai rūpnieciskā īpašuma iestādei jāpārsūta tajā iesniegtie vai citā šajā valstī kompetentā iestādē iesniegtie pieteikumi uz Eiropas Patentu iestādi visīsākajā laikā, ievērojot nacionālo likumu par izgudrojumu slepenību valsts aizsardzības interesēs.

(2) Dalībvalsts veic visus nepieciešamos pasākumus, lai nodrošinātu, ka Eiropas patenta pieteikumi, kuru objekts acīmredzami ir slepens saskaņā ar 1. daļu, tiek pārsūtīti uz Eiropas Patentu iestādi sešu nedēļu laikā pēc pieteikuma datuma.

(3) Eiropas patenta pieteikumus, kuru objekta novērtēšana no slepenības viedokļa prasa papildus ekspertīzi, jāpārsūta tādējādi, ka tie sasniedz Eiropas Patentu iestādi četru mēnešu laikā no pieteikuma datuma vai, ja tiem ir pieprasītas prioritātes tiesības, četrpadsmit mēnešu laikā no prioritātes datuma.

(4) Eiropas patenta pieteikumu, kura objekts ir atzīts par slepenu, netiek pārsūtīts uz Eiropas Patentu iestādi.

(5) Eiropas patenta pieteikumi, kuri nenonāk Eiropas Patentu iestādē pirms četrpadsmit mēnešu termiņa beigām no pieteikuma datuma vai, ja tiem ir pieprasītas prioritātes tiesības, no prioritātes datuma, tiek uzskatīti par atsauktiem. Pieteikuma, patentmeklējuma un valstu norādīšanas maksas atmaksā.

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Eiropas patenta pieteikumam noteiktās prasības

(1) Eiropas patenta pieteikums satur:

(a) lūgumu piešķirt Eiropas patentu;

(b) izgudrojuma aprakstu;

(c) vienu vai vairākas pretenzijas;

(d) zīmējumus, ja aprakstā vai pretenzijās ir atsauces uz tiem;

(e) kopsavilkumu.

(2) Par Eiropas patenta pieteikumu jāmaksā pieteikuma maksa un patentmeklējuma maksa viena mēneša laikā no pieteikuma datuma.

(3) Eiropas patenta pieteikumam jāatbilst Reglamenta nosacījumiem.

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Dalībvalstu norādīšana

(1) Lūgumam piešķirt Eiropas patentu jāsatur vienas vai vairāku valstu norādījums, kurās tiek lūgta patentaizsardzība.

(2) Par dalībvalsts norādīšanu jāmaksā norādīšanas maksa. Norādīšanas maksa jāsamaksā sešu mēnešu laikā no dienas, kad Eiropas Patentu biļetenā ir publicēts paziņojums par Eiropas patentmeklējumu.

(3) Dalībvalsts norādījumu var atsaukt jebkurā laikā līdz Eiropas patenta piešķiršanai. Visu norādīto dalībvalstu atsaukšana tiek uzskatīta par Eiropas patenta pieteikuma atsaukumu. Valstu norādīšanas maksas neatmaksā.

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Pieteikuma datums

Eiropas patenta pieteikuma datums ir datums, kurā pieteicējs ir iesniedzis šādus dokumentus:

(a) norādi, ka tiek lūgts Eiropas patents;

(b) vismaz vienas dalībvalsts norādījumu;

(c) ziņas, kas identificē pieteicēju;

(d) izgudrojuma aprakstu un vienu vai vairākas pretenzijas vienā no 14. panta 1. un 2. daļā minētajām valodām, kaut arī pieteikums un pretenzijas neatbilst citām Konvencijas prasībām.

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Izgudrotāja norādīšana

Eiropas patenta pieteikumā jānorāda izgudrotājs. Ja pieteicējs pats nav izgudrotājs vai nav vienīgais izgudrotājs, norādījumam jāsatur ziņas par tiesību izcelsmi uz Eiropas patentu.

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Izgudrojuma vienotība

Eiropas patenta pieteikums attiecas tikai uz vienu izgudrojumu vai uz tādu izgudrojumu grupu, kuru veido viena kopīga jaunrades koncepcija.

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Izgudrojuma atklāšana

Izgudrojums Eiropas patenta pieteikumā jāizklāsta tik skaidri un pilnīgi, lai attiecīgās nozares lietpratējs to var īstenot.

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Pretenzijas

Pretenzijas definē objektu, kam tiek lūgta patentaizsardzība. Tām jābūt skaidrām, precīzām un pamatotām aprakstā.

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Kopsavilkums

Kopsavilkums kalpo vienīgi tehniskās informācijas nolūkam; to nevar ņemt vērā citiem nolūkiem, it īpaši patentaizsardzības apjoma iztulkošanas nolūkam un 54. panta 3. daļā paredzētam nolūkam.

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Eiropas patenta pieteikumu uzturēšanas maksas

(1) Uzturēšanas maksas par Eiropas patenta pieteikumiem jāmaksā Eiropas Patentu iestādei saskaņā ar Reglamentu. Šīs maksas jāmaksā sākot ar trešo gadu, un par katru nākamo gadu, skaitot no pieteikuma datuma.

(2) Ja uzturēšanas maksa nav samaksāta pirms attiecīgā datuma, to var samaksāt vēl sešu mēnešu laikā no minētā datuma ar noteikumu, ka vienlaikus tiek samaksāta papildmaksa.

(3) Ja uzturēšanas maksa un papildmaksa nav samaksāta attiecīgajā termiņā, Eiropas patenta pieteikumu uzskata par atsauktu. Šādu lēmumu pieņem Eiropas Patentu iestāde vienpersoniski.

(4) Pienākums maksāt uzturēšanas maksu beidzas ar tā gada maksas samaksu, kurā tiek publicēts paziņojums par Eiropas patenta piešķiršanu.

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Prioritāte

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Prioritātes tiesības

(1) Persona vai tās tiesību pārņēmējs, kas ir pienācīgi iesniedzis patenta pieteikumu, lietderīgā modeļa pieteikumu, lietojamības sertifikāta pieteikumu vai autorapliecības pieteikumu vienā no Parīzes Konvencijas rūpnieciskā īpašuma aizsardzībai dalībvalstīm vai attiecībā uz vienu no šādām valstīm, ir tiesīga prasīt Eiropas patenta pieteikumam uz to pašu izgudrojumu pirmā pieteikuma prioritāti, ja Eiropas patenta pieteikums ir iesniegts divpadsmit mēnešu laikā no pirmā pieteikuma datuma.

(2) Katrs pieteikums, kas ir līdzvērtīgs pareizam nacionālajam pieteikumam saskaņā ar šīs valsts nacionālo likumu vai saskaņā ar divpusējiem vai daudzpusējiem līgumiem, ieskaitot šo Konvenciju, dod tiesības uz prioritāti.

(3) Pareizs nacionālais patenta pieteikums ir katrs pieteikums, kuram var piešķirt pieteikuma datumu, neatkarīgi no šī pieteikuma likteņa.

(4) Nākamais patenta pieteikums uz to pašu izgudrojumu, uz ko bija agrākais — pirmais pieteikums, kas iesniegts tajā pašā valstī vai attiecībā uz to pašu valsti, tiek uzskatīts par pirmo pieteikumu prioritātes tiesību noteikšanas nolūkam, ar nosacījumu, ka nākamā pieteikuma datumā agrākais pieteikums ir atsaukts, atstāts bez virzības vai noraidīts bez tā publiskošanas un bez jebkādām no tā izrietošām tiesībām, un tas nav jau bijis par pamatu prioritātes prasībai. Agrākais pieteikums pēc tam nevar būt par prioritātes tiesību pieprasīšanas pamatu.

(5) Ja pirmais pieteikums ir bijis valstī, kas nav Parīzes Konvencijas par rūpnieciskā īpašuma aizsardzību dalībvalsts, 1. līdz 4. daļu piemēro tikai tad, ja šī valsts saskaņā ar Administratīvās padomes publicētu paziņojumu un saskaņā ar divpusējiem vai daudzpusējiem līgumiem piešķir līdzvērtīgas prioritātes tiesības, pamatojoties uz pirmo pieteikumu Eiropas Patentu iestādē, kā arī uz pirmo pieteikumu vienā no dalībvalstīm vai attiecībā uz šādu dalībvalsti saskaņā ar Parīzes Konvencijai līdzvērtīgiem nosacījumiem.

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Prioritātes pieprasīšana

(1) Eiropas patenta pieteicējs, vēloties izmantot agrāka pieteikuma prioritāti, iesniedz prioritātes deklarāciju, agrākā pieteikuma kopiju un, ja pēdējais ir citā valodā nekā Eiropas Patentu iestādes oficiālās valodas, prioritātes pieteikuma tulkojumu vienā no šādām oficiālajām valodām. Šo prasību izpildes kārtību nosaka Reglaments.

(2) Eiropas patenta pieteikumam var pieprasīt vairākas prioritātes neraugoties uz to, ka to izcelsme var būt dažādās valstīs. Vajadzības gadījumā var pieprasīt vairākas prioritātes katrai pretenzijai. Pieprasot vairākas prioritātes, termiņi, kas sākas no prioritātes datuma, sākas no agrākā prioritātes datuma.

(3) Ja Eiropas patenta pieteikumam pieprasa vienu vai vairākas prioritātes, prioritātes tiesības attiecas tikai uz tām Eiropas patenta pieteikuma pazīmēm, kuras satur arī tas patenta pieteikums vai pieteikumi, kuru prioritāte tiek prasīta.

(4) Ja konkrēto izgudrojuma pazīmju, kurām tiek prasīta prioritāte, nav agrākā pieteikuma pretenzijās, prioritātes tiesības tomēr var piešķirt, ja agrākā pieteikuma dokumenti kopumā konkrēti atklāj šādas pazīmes.

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Prioritātes tiesību spēks

Prioritātes tiesībām ir tāda nozīme, ka prioritātes datumu uzskata par Eiropas patenta pieteikuma datumu 54. panta 2. un 3. daļas un 60. panta 2. daļas izpratnē.

IV daļa

Procedūra līdz patenta piešķiršanai

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Pārbaude, pieteikumu iesniedzot

(1) Pieteikumu saņemšanas sektors pārbauda, vai:

(a) Eiropas patenta pieteikums atbilst prasībām par pieteikuma datuma piešķiršanu;

(b) pieteikuma un patentmeklējuma maksa ir samaksāta noteiktā termiņā;

(c) 14. panta 2. daļā paredzētajā gadījumā Eiropas patenta pieteikuma tulkojums lietvedības valodā ir iesniegts noteiktā termiņā.

(2) Ja pieteikuma datumu nevar piešķirt, Pieteikumu saņemšanas sektors dod iespēju pieteicējam labot trūkumus Reglamentā paredzētajā kārtībā. Ja trūkumi netiek novērsti paredzētā termiņā, pieteikumu neuzskata par Eiropas patenta pieteikumu.

(3) Ja pieteikuma un patentmeklējuma maksa nav samaksāta noteiktā termiņā vai 14. panta 2. daļā paredzētā gadījumā pieteikuma tulkojums lietvedības valodā nav iesniegts noteiktā termiņā, pieteikumu uzskata par atsauktu.

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Formālo prasību pārbaude

(1) Ja Eiropas patenta pieteikumam piešķir pieteikuma datumu un to neuzskata par atsauktu saskaņā ar 90. panta 3. daļu, Pieteikumu saņemšanas sektors pārbauda, vai:

(a) ir izpildītas 133. panta 2. daļas prasības;

(b) pieteikums atbilst Reglamentā noteiktām tehniskām prasībām;

(c) ir iesniegts kopsavilkums;

(d) lūgums piešķirt Eiropas patentu izpilda Reglamentā paredzētās obligātās prasības par pieteikuma saturu un, vajadzības gadījumā, ir izpildītas Konvencijas prasības prioritātes tiesību atzīšanai;

(e) ir samaksātas valstu norādīšanas maksas;

(f) ir izpildīta 81. panta prasība par izgudrotāja norādīšanu;

(g) 78. panta 1. daļas (d) punktā paredzētos gadījumos pieteikuma datumā ir iesniegti zīmējumi.

(2) Ja Pieteikumu saņemšanas sektors konstatē trūkumus, kurus var labot, pieteicējam tiek dota iespēja šos trūkumus novērst saskaņā ar Reglamentu.

(3) Ja trūkumi, kas minēti 1. daļas (a) līdz (d) punktā, netiek novērsti saskaņā ar Reglamentu, pieteikumu noraida; ja 1. daļas (d) punktā minētie trūkumi attiecas uz prioritātes tiesībām, pieteikums zaudē šīs prioritātes tiesības.

(4) Ja 1. daļas (e) punktā minētā gadījumā noteiktā termiņā par kādu valsti nav samaksāta valsts norādīšanas maksa, šīs valsts norādīšana tiek uzskatīta par atsauktu.

(5) Ja 1. daļas (f) punktā paredzētajā gadījumā izgudrotāja neminēšana nav novērsta 16 mēnešu laikā no Eiropas patenta pieteikuma datuma vai, ja tam ir pieprasīta prioritāte, no prioritātes datuma saskaņā ar Reglamentu, un neminēšana nav tajos paredzētais izņēmums, tad pieteikumu uzskata par atsauktu.

(6) Ja 1. daļas (g) punktā paredzētajos gadījumos zīmējumi nav iesniegti pieteikuma datumā un nav veikti Reglamentā paredzētie pasākumi šī trūkuma novēršanai, pieteicējs saskaņā ar Reglamentu pēc savas izvēles var vai nu piekrist pieteikuma datuma grozīšanai uz datumu, kad tiek iesniegti zīmējumi, vai svītrot no pieteikuma visas atsauces uz zīmējumiem.

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Eiropas patentmeklējuma ziņojuma sastādīšana

(1) Ja Eiropas patenta pieteikumam ir piešķirts pieteikuma datums un to neuzskata par atsauktu saskaņā ar 90. panta 3. daļu, Patentmeklējumu nodaļa sastāda Eiropas patentmeklējuma ziņojumu, kas izriet no pretenzijām, Reglamentā paredzētā formā, ņemot vērā arī aprakstu un zīmējumus.

(2) Tūlīt pēc ziņojuma sastādīšanas to nosūta pieteicējam kopā ar tajā citētajiem dokumentiem.

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Eiropas patenta pieteikuma publicēšana

(1) Eiropas patenta pieteikumu publicē iespējami drīz pēc astoņpadsmit mēnešu termiņa no pieteikuma datuma vai, ja pieteikumam ir pieprasīta prioritāte, no prioritātes datuma. Tomēr pēc pieteicēja lūguma pieteikumu var publicēt pirms minētā termiņa beigām. To publicē vienlaikus ar Eiropas patenta specifikāciju, ja lēmums par patenta piešķiršanu ir pieņemts līdz iepriekšminētā termiņa beigām.

(2) Publikācija satur aprakstu, pretenzijas un iesniegtos zīmējumus, un kā pielikumu Eiropas patentmeklējuma ziņojumu un kopsavilkumu, ja pēdējie ir sastādīti pirms publikācijas tehniskās sagatavošanas termiņa beigām. Ja Eiropas patentmeklējuma ziņojums un kopsavilkums nav publicēti vienlaikus ar pieteikumu, tos publicē atsevišķi.

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Lūgums par ekspertīzi

(1) Eiropas Patentu iestāde pēc rakstiska lūguma saņemšanas veic patenta pieteikuma ekspertīzi par tā atbilstību Konvencijas prasībām.

(2) Lūgumu par ekspertīzi pieteicējs var iesniegt līdz sešu mēnešu termiņa beigām no dienas, kad Eiropas Patentu biļetenā publicēts Eiropas patentmeklējuma ziņojums. Lūgumu par ekspertīzi uzskata par neiesniegtu, ja nav samaksāta maksa par ekspertīzi. Lūgumu nevar atsaukt.

(3) Ja lūgums par ekspertīzi nav iesniegts līdz 2. daļa minētā termiņa beigām, pieteikumu uzskata par atsauktu.

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Lūguma par ekspertīzi iesniegšanas termiņa pagarināšana

(1) Administratīvā padome var pagarināt termiņu lūguma par ekspertīzi iesniegšanai, ja tā ir konstatējusi, ka Eiropas patenta pieteikumu ekspertīzi nav iespējams veikt paredzētajā laikā.

(2) Ja Administratīvā padome pagarina lūgumu iesniegšanas termiņu, tā var piešķirt trešām personām tiesības iesniegt lūgumus par ekspertīzi. Šajos gadījumos tā paredz attiecīgus nosacījumus Reglamentā.

(3) Katru Administratīvās padomes lēmumu par lūgumu iesniegšanas termiņa pagarināšanu var piemērot tikai pieteikumiem, kas iesniegti pēc šāda lēmuma publicēšanas Eiropas Patentu iestādes oficiālajā biļetenā.

(4) Ja Administratīvā padome pagarina ekspertīzes lūgumu iesniegšanas termiņu, tai jāveic visi nepieciešamie pasākumi, lai šī termiņa pagarināšanu pēc iespējas drīz atceltu.

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Eiropas patenta pieteikuma ekspertīze

(1) Ja Eiropas patenta pieteicējs ir iesniedzis lūgumu par ekspertīzi pirms viņam ir nosūtīts Eiropas patentmeklējuma ziņojums, Eiropas Patentu iestāde pēc šī ziņojuma nosūtīšanas uzaicina pieteicēju noteiktā termiņā apliecināt, vai viņš vēlas turpināt Eiropas patenta pieteikuma lietvedību.

(2) Ja Eiropas patenta pieteikuma ekspertīze atklāj, ka pieteikums neatbilst Konvencijas prasībām, Ekspertīzes nodaļa pašas noteiktā termiņā aicina pieteicēju iesniegt savus apsvērumus Reglamentā paredzētā kārtībā tik reizes, cik tā uzskata par nepieciešamu.

(3) Ja pieteicējs neatbild uz visiem 1. un 2. daļā minētajiem uzaicinājumiem noteiktā termiņā, pieteikumu uzskata par atsauktu.

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Pieteikuma noraidījums

(1) Ekspertīzes nodaļa noraida Eiropas patenta pieteikumu, ja tā uzskata, ka šis pieteikums vai tajā aprakstītais izgudrojums neatbilst Konvencijas prasībām, izņemot gadījumus, kad Konvencija paredz citādas sankcijas.

(2) Ja Ekspertīzes nodaļa uzskata, ka pieteikums un tajā aprakstītais izgudrojums atbilst Konvencijas prasībām, tā pieņem lēmumu par Eiropas patenta piešķiršanu norādītajās valstīs ar noteikumu, ka:

(a) pieteicējs saskaņā ar Reglamentu apstiprina Ekspertīzes nodaļas piedāvāto Eiropas patenta tekstu;

(b) Reglamentā paredzētā termiņā ir samaksāta maksa par patenta piešķiršanu un drukāšanu;

(c) pienācīgās uzturēšanas un papildmaksas ir samaksātas.

(3) Ja patenta piešķiršanas un drukāšanas maksas nav samaksātas pienācīgā termiņā, pieteikumu uzskata par atsauktu.

(4) Eiropas patents nestājas spēkā pirms paziņojuma par Eiropas patenta piešķiršanu publicēšanas Eiropas Patentu biļetenā. Šādu paziņojumu publicē ne ātrāk kā 3 mēnešus pēc 2. daļas (b) punktā noteiktā datuma.

(5) Reglamentā var paredzēt nosacījumu, ka pieteicējs iesniedz to pretenziju tulkojumu divās pārējās Eiropas patentu iestādes oficiālajās valodās, kas nav pieteikuma lietvedības valoda, kas pēc Ekspertīzes nodaļas lēmuma ir piešķiramā Eiropas patenta tekstā. Šajā gadījumā 4. daļā paredzētais termiņš ir vismaz pieci mēneši. Ja tulkojums nav iesniegts pienācīgajā termiņā, pieteikumu uzskata par atsauktu.

(6) Pēc pieteicēja lūguma, paziņojumu par Eiropas patenta piešķiršanu publicē pirms 4. un 5. daļā paredzētā termiņa. Šādu lūgumu var iesniegt tikai tad, ja ir izpildītas 2. un 5. daļas prasības.

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Eiropas patenta specifikācijas publicēšana

Vienlaikus ar paziņojuma par Eiropas patenta piešķiršanu publicēšanu Eiropas patentu iestāde publicē Eiropas patenta specifikāciju, kas satur aprakstu, pretenzijas un zīmējumus, ja tādi ir.

V daļa

IEBILDUMA PROCEDŪRA

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Iebildums

(1) Ikviena persona deviņu mēnešu laikā no dienas, kad ir publicēts paziņojums par Eiropas patenta piešķiršanu, var iesniegt Eiropas Patentu iestādē iebildumu pret Eiropas patenta piešķiršanu. Iebildums iesniedzams rakstiski, tam jāsatur pienācīgs pamatojums. Iebildumu uzskata par neiesniegtu, ja nav samaksāta iebilduma maksa.

(2) Iebildumu attiecina uz Eiropas patentu visās dalībvalstīs, kurās šis patents ir spēkā.

(3) Iebildumu var iesniegt pat tajos gadījumos, kad patenta īpašnieks ir no patenta atteicies, vai tas ir zaudējis spēku visās norādītajās dalībvalstīs.

(4) Iebilduma iesniedzēji (oponenti) un patenta īpašnieks ir puses iebilduma procedūrā.

(5) Ja persona iesniedz pierādījumus, ka kādā dalībvalstī, pamatojoties uz galīgu lēmumu, tā ir iekļauta šīs dalībvalsts Patentu reģistrā iepriekšējā patenta īpašnieka vietā, šāda persona var lūgt atļauju aizstāt iepriekšējo īpašnieku attiecībā uz šo valsti. Atkāpjoties no 118. panta noteikumiem, iepriekšējais īpašnieks un persona, kas iesniegusi attiecīgo lūgumu, netiek uzskatīti par kopīpašniekiem, ja abas personas to nav lūgušas.

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Iebilduma pamatojums

Iebildumu var pamatot tikai ar to, ka:

(a) Eiropas patenta objekts nav patentspējīgs 52. līdz 57. panta nozīmē;

(b) Eiropas patents neatklāj izgudrojumu tik skaidri un pilnīgi, lai to varētu īstenot attiecīgās nozares lietpratējs;

(c) Eiropas patenta objekta apjoms ir plašāks nekā sākotnējā patenta pieteikuma objekta apjoms, vai, ja patents ir piešķirts pēc izdalītā pieteikuma vai pēc jauna pieteikuma, kas bijis iesniegts saskaņā ar 61. pantu, ir plašāks par šī agrāk iesniegtā pieteikuma apjomu.

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Iebilduma izskatīšana

(1) Ja iebildums ir pieņemams izskatīšanai, Iebildumu nodaļa izskata, vai iebilduma pamatojums, kas minēts 100. pantā, kaitē Eiropas patenta uzturēšanai spēkā.

(2) Iebilduma izskatīšanā, kas tiek veikta saskaņā ar Reglamentu, Iebildumu nodaļa uzaicina puses iesniegt savus apsvērumus par otras puses iesniegtajiem paziņojumiem vai par saviem apgalvojumiem tik reizes, cik tā uzskata par nepieciešamu, termiņā, kuru nosaka Iebildumu nodaļa.

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Eiropas patenta anulēšana vai uzturēšana

(1) Ja Iebildumu nodaļa uzskata, ka iebilduma pamatojums, kas minēts 100. pantā, kaitē Eiropas patenta uzturēšanai spēkā, tā anulē patentu.

(2) Ja Iebildumu nodaļa uzskata, ka iebilduma pamatojums, kas minēts 100. pantā, nekaitē patenta uzturēšanai negrozītā veidā, tā iebildumu noraida.

(3) Ja Iebildumu nodaļa uzskata, ka, ņemot vērā patenta īpašnieka izdarītos grozījumus iebilduma procedūras laikā, patents un ar to aizsargātais izgudrojums atbilst Konvencijas prasībām, tā pieņem lēmumu uzturēt patentu spēkā grozītā veidā, ar noteikumu, ka

(a) tiek konstatēts, ka īpašnieks saskaņā ar Reglamentu ir akceptējis Iebilduma nodaļas grozīto patenta tekstu;

(b) maksa par Eiropas patenta jaunās specifikācijas drukāšanu ir samaksāta termiņā, kuru nosaka Reglaments.

(4) Ja maksa par jaunās specifikācijas drukāšanu nav samaksāta noteiktā termiņā, patentu anulē.

(5) Reglamentā var paredzēt nosacījumu, ka patenta īpašniekam jāiesniedz grozīto pretenziju tulkojums abās oficiālajās Eiropas Patentu iestādes valodās, kas nav lietvedības valoda. Ja tulkojumu neiesniedz noteiktā termiņā, patentu anulē.

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Eiropas patenta jaunās specifikācijas publicēšana

Ja Eiropas patents ir grozīts saskaņā ar 102. panta 3. daļu, Eiropas Patentu iestāde vienlaikus ar paziņojuma publicēšanu par lēmumu iebilduma lietā publicē jaunu Eiropas patenta specifikāciju, kas satur aprakstu, pretenzijas un zīmējumus, ja tādi ir, grozītā veidā.

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Izmaksas

(1) Katra puse sedz savas iebilduma procedūras izmaksas, ja vien Iebildumu nodaļa vai Apelācijas padome saskaņā ar Reglamentu, taisnīguma apsvērumu dēļ neparedz citādu izmaksu segšanas kārtību, saistītu ar pierādījumu iegūšanu vai mutisku izskatīšanas procedūru.

(2) Pēc pieprasījuma, Iebildumu nodaļas reģistrā ieraksta izmaksu lielumu, kas saskaņā ar tās lēmumu jāmaksā katrai pusei. Reģistrā ierakstīto izmaksu lielumu var pārskatīt ar Iebildumu nodaļas lēmumu, ja Reglamentā paredzētā termiņā ir iesniegts pieprasījums par to.

(3) Īpašuma tiesību izlietošanā dalībvalstīs ikvienam Eiropas patentu iestādes galīgam lēmumam par tās noteikto izmaksu lielumu, ir tāds pats spēks, kā tās valsts civiltiesas galīgam spriedumam, kurā notiek īpašuma tiesību izlietošana. Šāda lēmuma verifikācija aprobežojas ar tā autentiskuma pārbaudi.

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Domājamā patenta pārkāpēja iesaistīšanās

(1) Gadījumā, kad ir iesniegts iebildums pret Eiropas patentu, jebkura trešā persona, kura pierāda, ka pret viņu ir ierosināta tiesvedība par šī paša patenta pārkāpšanu, var pēc tam, kad ir pagājis iebilduma termiņš, iesaistīties iebilduma procedūrā, ja tā triju mēnešu laikā no dienas, kad pret to ir ierosināta lieta par patenta pārkāpumu, ir paziņojusi par iesaistīšanos. Šo pašu nosacījumu piemēro arī jebkurai trešai personai, kas pierāda, ka patenta īpašnieks ir pieprasījis viņai atteikties no iespējamā patenta pārkāpuma un ka viņa ir ierosinājusi tiesvedību par patenta nepārkāpšanas atzīšanu.

(2) Paziņojums par iesaistīšanos iesniedzams rakstiski, tam jāsatur pamatojums. Paziņojumu uzskata par neiesniegtu, ja nav samaksāta maksa par iebildumu. Pēc tam iesaistīšanās, ievērojot Reglamentā paredzētos izņēmumus, tiek uzskatīta par iebildumu.

VI daļa

APELĀCIJAS PROCEDŪRA

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Lēmumi, pret kuriem var iesniegt apelāciju

(1) Apelāciju var iesniegt pret Pieteikumu saņemšanas sektora, Ekspertīzes nodaļu, Iebildumu nodaļu un Juridiskās nodaļas lēmumiem. Iesniegta apelācija aptur pieteikuma lietvedību.

(2) Apelāciju pret Iebildumu nodaļas lēmumu var iesniegt pat tad, ja īpašnieks ir atteicies no šī Eiropas patenta vai tas ir anulēts attiecībā uz visām norādītajām valstīm.

(3) Pret lēmumu, ar kuru nebeidzas lietvedība attiecībā uz vienu no pusēm, var iesniegt apelāciju tikai vienlaikus ar galīgo lēmumu, ja vien šajā lēmumā nav paredzēts, ka par to var iesniegt atsevišķu apelāciju.

(4) Iebilduma procedūras izmaksu sadalījums viens pats nevar būt par pamatu apelācijai.

(5) Apelāciju pret lēmumu par iebilduma procedūras izmaksu lielumu nevar iesniegt, ja vien šis lielums nepārsniedz Noteikumos par maksām paredzēto.

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Personas, kas ir tiesīgas iesniegt apelāciju un būt par apelācijas procedūras pusēm

Katra lietvedības puse, kurai ir pieņemts nelabvēlīgs lēmums, var iesniegt apelāciju. Otra lietvedības puse ir likumiska apelācijas procedūras puse.

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Apelācijas termiņš un forma

Apelācijas iesniegumu iesniedz rakstiski Eiropas Patentu iestādē divu mēnešu laikā no dienas, kad ir paziņots lēmums, pret kuru tiek iesniegta apelācija. Iesniegumu uzskata par neiesniegtu, ja par to nav samaksāta attiecīgā maksa. Četru mēnešu laikā no dienas, kad ir paziņots lēmums, rakstiski jāiesniedz apelācijas pamatojums.

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Lēmuma pagaidu pārskatīšana

(1) Ja nodaļa, kuras lēmums ir apstrīdēts, uzskata, ka apelācija ir paļaujama un pienācīgi pamatota, tā groza savu lēmumu. Šo noteikumu nepiemēro, ja apelācijas iesniedzējam iebilst lietvedības otra puse.

(2) Ja apelācija nav atzīta par pieņemamu triju mēnešu laikā pēc pamatojuma iesniegšanas, to atdod Apelācijas padomei bez kavēšanās un bez izteikumiem par tās būtību.

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Apelācijas izskatīšana

(1) Ja apelācija ir pieņemama izskatīšanai, Apelācijas padome noskaidro, vai tā ir pieļaujama.

(2) Apelācijas izskatīšanā, kuru veic saskaņā ar Reglamenta prasībām, Apelācijas padome uzaicina puses iesniegt savus apsvērumus par otras puses vai par saviem paziņojumiem termiņā, kuru Apelācijas padome norāda, un tik reizes, cik tā uzskata par nepieciešamu.

(3) Ja pieteicējs noteiktā termiņā neiesniedz atbildes uz 2. daļā noteikto uzaicinājumu, Eiropas patenta pieteikumu uzskata par atsauktu, izņemot gadījumu, kad apelācija ir iesniegta pret Juridiskās nodaļas lēmumu.

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Lēmumi apelāciju lietās

(1) Pēc apelācijas pieļaujamības konstatēšanas, Apelācijas padome izlemj apelācijas lietu. Apelācijas padome var vai nu izlietot savas tiesības tā departamenta kompetences ietvaros, kurš bija atbildīgs par lēmumu, pret kuru ir apelācija, vai arī atdot lietu atpakaļ šim departamentam papildus izskatīšanai.

(2) Ja Apelācijas padome atdod lietu papildus izskatīšanai departamentam, pret kura lēmumu ir apelācija, departamentam ir saistošs Apelācijas padomes pamatojums (ratio decidendi) tiktāl, ciktāl ir runa par tiem pašiem faktiem. Ekspertīzes nodaļai Apelācijas padomes pamatojums ir saistošs arī tad, ja lēmumu, pret kuru ir apelācija, ir pieņēmis Pieteikumu saņemšanas sektors.

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Paplašinātās apelācijas padomes lēmums vai atzinums

(1) Lai nodrošinātu vienveidīgu likuma piemērošanu, vai, ja rodas nozīmīgas likuma iztulkošanas problēmas:

(a) Apelācijas padome konkrētas apelācijas izskatīšanas laikā pēc savas iniciatīvas vai pēc kādas apelācijas lietas puses pieprasījuma var nosūtīt izlemšanai jebkuru jautājumu Paplašinātajai apelācijas padomei, ja tas nepieciešams augšminētiem nolūkiem. Ja Apelācijas padome noraida pieprasījumu, tai noraidījuma iemesli jānorāda savā galīgajā lēmumā;

(b) Eiropas Patentu iestādes prezidents var lūgt Paplašinātajai apelācijas padomei izskatīt strīdīgās likuma normas, ja divas Apelācijas padomes ir pieņēmušas dažādus lēmumus, pamatojoties uz vienu likuma normu.

(2) 1. daļas (a) punktā minētajos gadījumos apelācijas procedūras puses ir puses Paplašinātās apelācijas padomes lietvedībā.

(3) 1. daļas (a) punktā minētos gadījumos Paplašinātās apelācijas padomes lēmums ir saistošs Apelācijas padomei konkrētajā apelācijas lietā.

VII daļa

KOPĒJIE NOTEIKUMI

I nodaļa

Kopējie procesuālie noteikumi

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Lēmumu pamats

(1) Eiropas Patentu iestādes lēmumus var pamatot vienīgi ar Konvencijas normām vai pierādījumiem, par kuriem attiecīgām personām ir bijusi iespēja iesniegt savus komentārus.

(2) Eiropas Patentu iestāde izskata un pieņem lēmumus par Eiropas patenta pieteikumiem un Eiropas patentiem tikai uz tā teksta pamata, ko tai ir iesniedzis pieteicējs vai patenta īpašnieks, vai kuram tie ir piekrituši.

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Eiropas Patentu iestādes ekspertīze pēc pašas iniciatīvas

(1) Lietvedības procedūrās Eiropas Patentu iestāde veic faktu ekspertīzi pēc pašas iniciatīvas; ekspertīze neaprobežojas ar pušu iesniegto faktu, pierādījumu un pamatojumu pārbaudi un prasību apmierināšanu.

(2) Eiropas Patentu iestāde var neņemt vērā faktus vai pierādījumus, ko attiecīgā puse nav iesniegusi pienācīgā termiņā.

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Trešo personu piezīmes

(1) Pēc Eiropas patenta publicēšanas jebkura persona var iesniegt piezīmes par pieteiktā izgudrojuma patentspēju. Šādas piezīmes jāiesniedz rakstiski, un tajās jānorāda likuma normas, ar kurām tās pamatotas. Šāda persona nav lietvedības puse Eiropas Patentu iestādē.

(2) 1.punktā minētās piezīmes nosūta pieteicējam vai patenta īpašniekam, kurš savukārt var iesniegt par tām savus komentārus.

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Mutiska izskatīšana

(1) Mutiska izskatīšana notiek vai nu pēc Eiropas Patentu iestādes prasības, ja tā šādu izskatīšanu uzskata par lietderīgu, vai pēc kādas lietvedības puses lūguma. Tomēr Eiropas Patentu iestāde var šādu lūgumu par papildus mutisku izskatīšanu noraidīt, ja lietvedības puses un izskatīšanas priekšmets ir tas pats.

(2) Mutiska izskatīšana Pieteikumu saņemšanas sektorā notiek pēc pieteicēja lūguma tikai tad, ja Pieteikumu saņemšanas sektors uzskata to par lietderīgu, vai ja tas ir paredzējis noraidīt Eiropas patenta pieteikumu.

(3) Mutiska izskatīšana Pieteikumu saņemšanas sektorā, Ekspertīzes nodaļās un Juridiskajā nodaļā nav publiska.

(4) Mutiska izskatīšana, arī lēmuma pasludināšana, tiek publiskota pēc Eiropas patenta pieteikuma publicēšanas, ja šī izskatīšana notikusi Apelācijas padomē, Paplašinātajā apelācijas padomē, kā arī Iebildumu nodaļās, ja vien departaments, kurā izskatīšana ir notikusi, nenolemj pretēji gadījumos, kad publiskošana varētu radīt nopietnu un netaisnīgu kaitējumu, īpaši kādai no lietvedības pusēm.

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Pierādījumu iegūšana

(1) Ikvienā procedūrā Ekspertīzes nodaļā, Iebilduma nodaļā, Juridiskajā nodaļā vai Apelācijas padomē pierādījumu iegūšana ietver:

(a) pušu uzklausīšanu;

(b) informācijas pieprasījumus;

(c) dokumentu iesniegšanu;

(d) liecinieku uzklausīšanu;

(e) ekspertu atzinumus;

(f) pārbaudes;

(g) ar zvērestu apliecinātus rakstiskus paziņojumus.

(2) Ekspertīzes nodaļa, Iebildumu nodaļa vai Apelācijas padome var pilnvarot vienu no saviem locekļiem izvērtēt iesniegtos pierādījumus.

(3) Ja Eiropas Patentu iestāde uzskata par nepieciešamu, lai puse, liecinieks vai eksperts sniedz pierādījumus mutiski, tā:

(a) izsniedz attiecīgajai personai uzaicinājumu ierasties, vai

(b) lūdz saskaņā ar 131. panta 2. daļas nosacījumiem šīs personas dzīves vietas valsts kompetentu tiesas institūciju iegūt šādu pierādījumu.

(4) Puse, liecinieks vai eksperts, kuru ir uzaicinājusi Eiropas Patentu iestāde, var lūgt, lai tā ļauj uzaicinātajai personai sniegt pierādījumus savas dzīves vietas valsts kompetentai tiesu institūcijai. Saņemot šādu lūgumu vai, ja Eiropas Patentu iestādes uzaicinājumā norādītā termiņā nav saņemta atbilde, Eiropas Patentu iestāde var lūgt kompetento tiesu uzklausīt attiecīgo personu saskaņā ar 131. panta 2. daļu.

(5) Ja puse, liecinieks vai eksperts sniedz pierādījumus Eiropas Patentu iestādē, pēdējā, ja tā uzskata par vēlamu, ka pierādījumu apliecina ar zvērestu vai līdzīgā saistošā veidā, var lūgt attiecīgās personas dzīves vietas valsts kompetento tiesas institūciju atkārtoti pārbaudīt sniegtos pierādījums šādos saistošos apstākļos.

(6) Ja Eiropas Patentu iestāde lūdz kompetentu tiesas institūciju iegūt pierādījumus, tā var lūgt šo tiesu iegūt šos pierādījumus apzvērētā vai līdzīgi saistošā veidā un ļaut attiecīgā departamenta loceklim piedalīties attiecīgās puses, liecinieka vai eksperta uzklausīšanā vai nu ar pārstāvja starpniecību vai tieši tiesas sēdē.

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Eiropas patenta pieteikuma vai Eiropas patenta vienotība

Ja Eiropas patenta pieteikuma pieteicējs vai Eiropas patenta īpašnieks nav viens un tas pats attiecībā uz visām norādītajām valstīm, tad šādus pieteicējus vai īpašniekus var uzskatīt par koppieteicējiem vai kopīpašniekiem lietvedības nolūkos Eiropas Patentu iestādē. Pieteikuma vai patenta vienotību tas neietekmē; piemēram, pieteikuma vai patenta teksts ir vienāds visām norādītajām dalībvalstīm, ja vien Konvencijā nav paredzēts citādi.

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Paziņošana

Eiropas Patentu iestāde vienmēr paziņo iesaistītajām personām savus lēmumus un izsūta uzaicinājumus, kā arī citus paziņojumus, kuros ir norādīti termiņi, vai kuru paziņošanu paredz Konvencijas normas, vai kuru paziņošanu ir uzdevis Eiropas Patentu iestādes prezidents.

Izņēmuma gadījumos, ja apstākļi to prasa, paziņojumus var nosūtīt, izmantojot dalībvalstu centrālo rūpnieciskā īpašuma iestāžu starpniecību.

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Termiņi

Reglaments nosaka:

(a) termiņu aprēķināšanas kārtību un apstākļus, pie kuriem šādus termiņus var pagarināt, vai nu tādēļ, ka Eiropas Patentu iestāde vai 75. panta 1. daļas (b) punktā minētās iestādes nav atvērtas dokumentu pieņemšanai, vai tādēļ, ka teritorijās, kur atrodas Eiropas Patentu iestāde vai minētās iestādes, pasta sūtījumi netiek veikti, vai tādēļ, ka pasta pakalpojumi ir traucēti vispār vai vēlāk pārtraukti;

(b) Eiropas Patentu iestādes kompetencē esošos minimālos un maksimālos termiņus.

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Eiropas patenta pieteikuma turpmākā izskatīšana

(1) Ja Eiropas patenta pieteikums ir noraidāms, noraidīts vai uzskatāms par atsauktu Eiropas Patentu iestādes noteiktā atbildes termiņa neievērošanas dēļ, paredzētās juridiskās sekas neiestājas vai, ja tās jau ir iestājušās, tiek atsauktas, ja pieteicējs lūdz turpināt pieteikuma lietvedību.

(2) Lūgumu jāiesniedz rakstiski divu mēnešu laikā no dienas, kad pieteicējam ir paziņots lēmums par pieteikuma noraidīšanu vai par pieteikuma uzskatīšanu par atsauktu. Neizpildītā darbība ir jāizpilda šajā pašā termiņā. Lūgumu uzskata par neiesniegtu, kamēr nav samaksāts par lietvedības turpināšanu.

(3) Par lūgumu lemj tas departaments, kura kompetencē ir neizpildītās darbības pārbaude.

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Tiesību atjaunošana (Restitutio in integrum)

(1) Eiropas patenta pieteicēja vai īpašnieka tiesības tiek atjaunotas pēc viņa lūguma gadījumos, kad pieteicējs vai īpašnieks nebija spējīgs ievērot darbībām Eiropas Patentu iestādē noteiktos termiņus, neskatoties uz attiecīgajos apstākļos izrādīto pienācīgo rūpību, ja šī termiņa neievērošanas tiešās sekas saskaņā ar Konvenciju ir Eiropas patenta pieteikuma vai lūguma noraidīšana, vai Eiropas patenta pieteikuma uzskatīšana par atsauktu, vai Eiropas patenta anulēšana, vai jebkura citu tiesību vai kompensācijas līdzekļu zaudēšana.

(2) Lūgums jāiesniedz rakstiski divu mēnešu laikā no dienas, kad tiek novērsts termiņa neievērošanas cēlonis. Neizpildītās darbības ir jāizpilda šajā pašā laikā. Lūgums iesniedzams tikai viena gada laikā no neievērotā termiņa beigām. Patenta uzturēšanas maksas termiņa neievērošanas gadījumā, 86. panta 2. daļā noteiktais laiks tiek atskaitīts no viena gada termiņa.

(3) Lūgumam jāsatur pamatojums un tajā jāizklāsta fakti, uz kuriem tas balstās. Lūgumu uzskata par neiesniegtu, kamēr nav samaksāta maksa par tiesību atjaunošanu.

(4) Nodaļa, kas ir kompetenta lemt par neizpildītajām darbībām, lemj par lūguma pieņemšanu.

(5) Šī panta nosacījumus nepiemēro šī panta 2. daļā, 61. panta 3. daļā, 76. panta 3. daļā, 78. panta 2. daļā, 87. panta 1. daļā un 94. panta 2. daļā noteiktajiem termiņiem.

(6) Jebkura persona, kas norādītajā dalībvalstī laika posmā starp 1. daļā minēto tiesību zaudēšanu un publikāciju par minēto tiesību atjaunošanu labticīgi ir izmantojusi vai veikusi nopietnus nepieciešamos priekšdarbus izgudrojuma izmantošanai, kas ir publicētā Eiropas patenta pieteikuma vai patenta objekts, var bez atlīdzības turpināt šādu izmantošanu savā uzņēmējdarbībā vai tās vajadzībām.

(7) Šī panta nosacījumi neliedz dalībvalstij piešķirt tiesību atjaunošanu Konvencijā paredzētiem un šīs valsts rūpnieciskā īpašuma iestādē veicamo darbību termiņiem.

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Grozījumi

(1) Nosacījumi, saskaņā ar kuriem lietvedības gaitā Eiropas Patentu iestādē var grozīt Eiropas patenta pieteikumu vai Eiropas patentu, ir izklāstīti Reglamentā. Jebkurā gadījumā pieteicējam ir tiesības vismaz vienu reizi grozīt aprakstu, pretenzijas un zīmējumus pēc paša vēlēšanās.

(2) Eiropas patenta pieteikuma vai Eiropas patenta grozījumi nevar paplašināt sākotnēji iesniegtā pieteikuma saturu.

(3) Eiropas patenta pretenzijas nevar grozīt iebilduma procedūras laikā tādējādi, ka tiek paplašināta piešķirtā aizsardzība.

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Informācija par nacionālajiem patenta pieteikumiem

(1) Ekspertīzes nodaļa vai Apelācijas padome var aicināt pieteicēju norādīt noteiktā termiņā tās valstis, kurās pieteicējs ir iesniedzis nacionālos patenta pieteikumus uz visu vai daļu tā izgudrojuma, uz kuru attiecas Eiropas patenta pieteikums, norādot šo pieteikumu numurus.

(2) Ja pieteicējs termiņā neatbild uz 1. daļā paredzēto aicinājumu, Eiropas patenta pieteikumu uzskata par atsauktu.

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Atsaukšanās uz vispārējiem principiem

Gadījumos, kad Konvencija neparedz kādu procesuālu normu, Eiropas Patentu iestāde ņem vērā attiecīgajā dalībvalstī atzītos vispārējos procesuālo tiesību principus.

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Finansiālo saistību izbeigšanās

(1) Organizācijas tiesības izdarīt iemaksu Eiropas Patentu iestādei izbeidzas četrus gadus pēc tā kalendārā gada beigām, kurā iemaksa bija jāveic.

(2) Organizācijas tiesības prasīt iemaksu vai pārmaksātās summas atmaksāšanu no Eiropas Patentu iestādes izbeidzas četrus gadus pēc tā kalendārā gada beigām, kurā šīs tiesības radās.

(3) Šī panta 1. daļā minētā gadījumā 1.un 2. daļā minēto laika periodu pārtrauc lūgums par iemaksas izdarīšanu, un 2. daļā minētā gadījumā— pamatots rakstisks lūgums. Pēc pārtraukuma laika periods atsāk tecējumu nekavējoties, un izbeidzas vēlākais sešus gadus pēc tā gada beigām, kurā tas sākotnēji sākās, ja vien šajā laika posmā nav sākusies tiesvedība par minēto tiesību piespiedu izlietošanu; šajā gadījumā laika periods beidzas ne agrāk par vienu gadu pēc tiesas sprieduma stāšanās spēkā.

II nodaļa

Informācijas sniegšana sabiedrībai un valsts iestādēm

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Eiropas patentu reģistrs

Eiropas Patentu iestāde veido un glabā reģistru, kurš ir pazīstams kā Eiropas patentu reģistrs un kurā ir Konvencijā paredzētās ziņas. Reģistrā neizdara nevienu ierakstu pirms Eiropas patenta pieteikuma publicēšanas. Reģistrs ir publiski pieejams.

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Iepazīšanās ar lietām

(1) Eiropas patenta pieteikumu lietas pirms to publicēšanas nav publiski pieejamas bez pieteicēja piekrišanas.

(2) Jebkura persona, kas var pierādīt, ka Eiropas patenta pieteicējs ir vērsies pret to, balstoties uz savām pieteicēja tiesībām, var iepazīties ar lietu pirms pieteikuma publicēšanas un bez pieteicēja piekrišanas.

(3) Ja ir publicēts Eiropas izdalītais pieteikums vai jauns pieteikums, kas iesniegts saskaņā ar 61. panta 1. daļas nosacījumiem, jebkura persona var iepazīties ar agrākā pieteikuma lietu pirms šī pieteikuma publicēšanas un bez attiecīgā pieteicēja piekrišanas.

(4) Pēc Eiropas patenta pieteikuma publicēšanas, iesniedzot lūgumu, var iepazīties ar lietām, kas attiecas uz šo pieteikumu un tā rezultātā piešķirto Eiropas patentu, ievērojot Reglamentā paredzētos ierobežojumus.

(5) Arī pirms Eiropas patenta pieteikuma publicēšanas, Eiropas Patentu iestāde var paziņot trešām personām vai publicēt šādus bibliogrāfiskos datus:

(a) Eiropas patenta pieteikuma numuru;

(b) Eiropas patenta pieteikuma datumu un, ja agrāka pieteikuma prioritāte tiek prasīta, šī agrākā pieteikuma datumu, valsti un numuru;

(c) pieteicēja vārdu;

(d) izgudrojuma nosaukumu;

(e) norādītās dalībvalstis.

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Periodiskās publikācijas

Eiropas Patentu iestāde periodiski publicē:

(a) Eiropas patentu biļetenu, kas satur Eiropas patentu reģistra ziņas, kā arī citas Konvencijā paredzētās ziņas;

(b) Eiropas Patentu iestādes Oficiālo žurnālu, kas satur Eiropas Patentu iestādes prezidenta paziņojumus un vispārēja rakstura informāciju, kā arī katru informāciju, kas attiecas uz Konvenciju vai tās īstenošanu.

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Informācijas apmaiņa

(1) Eiropas Patentu iestāde un dalībvalstu centrālās rūpnieciskā īpašuma iestādes, izlietojot 75. panta 2. daļā paredzētās likumdošanas vai administratīvās normas, pēc lūguma sniedz viena otrai katru noderīgu informāciju par Eiropas vai nacionālajiem patenta pieteikumiem, šo pieteikumu lietvedību un piešķirtajiem patentiem.

(2) Šī panta 1. daļas nosacījumus piemēro informācijas apmaiņai, kas pamatojas uz sadarbības līgumiem starp Eiropas Patentu iestādi un:

(a) katras valsts, kas nav Konvencijas dalībvalsts, centrālo rūpnieciskā īpašuma iestādi;

(b) katru starpvalstu organizāciju, kura ir pilnvarota piešķirt patentus;

(c) jebkuru citu organizāciju.

(3) Šī panta 1. un 2. daļas (a) punktā minētā informācijas apmaiņa nav pakļauta 128. pantā paredzētajiem ierobežojumiem. Administratīvā padome var noteikt, ka 2. daļas (c) punktā minētā informācijas apmaiņa netiek ierobežota, ja attiecīgās organizācijas rīkojas ar šo informāciju kā ar konfidenciālu līdz Eiropas patenta pieteikuma publicēšanai.

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Administratīvā un tiesiskā sadarbība

(1) Ja Konvencijā vai nacionālajos likumos nav paredzēts citādi, Eiropas Patentu iestāde un dalībvalstu tiesas vai iestādes pēc lūguma sniedz viena otrai palīdzību, nosūtot informāciju vai atļaujot lietu inspicēšanu. Gadījumos, kad Eiropas Patentu iestāde ļauj iepazīties ar lietām tiesām, prokuratūras iestādēm vai centrālajām rūpnieciskā īpašuma iestādēm, šī iepazīšanās netiek ierobežota saskaņā ar 128. panta nosacījumiem.

(2) Dalībvalstu tiesas vai citas kompetentās iestādes, saņemot Eiropas Patentu iestādes lūgumu par izziņas veikšanu, veic šīs iestādes vārdā un savas jurisdikcijas robežās atļauto nepieciešamo izziņu vākšanu vai citas juridiskas darbības.

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Publikāciju apmaiņa

(1) Eiropas Patentu iestāde un dalībvalstu centrālās rūpnieciskā īpašuma iestādes pēc lūguma piegādā viena otrai bez maksas vienu vai vairākus attiecīgo publikāciju eksemplārus iekšējai lietošanai.

(2) Eiropas Patentu iestāde var noslēgt līgumus par publikāciju apmaiņu vai piegādi.

III nodaļa

Pārstāvība

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Vispārējie pārstāvības principi

(1) Saskaņā ar 2. daļas nosacījumiem nevienai personai Konvencijā paredzētajās procedūrās nav jābūt pārstāvētai ar profesionālu pārstāvi.

(2) Fiziskām un juridiskām personām, kuru pastāvīgā dzīvesvieta vai uzņēmumu atrašanās vieta nav vienā no dalībvalstīm, visās Konvencijā paredzētajās procedūrās, izņemot Eiropas patenta pieteikuma iesniegšanu, jābūt pārstāvētai ar profesionālu pārstāvi; Reglaments var paredzēt citus izņēmumus.

(3) Fiziskās un juridiskās personas, kuru dzīvesvieta vai uzņēmuma atrašanās vieta ir kādā no dalībvalstīm, Konvencijā paredzētajās procedūrās var pārstāvēt to darbinieks, kuram nav jābūt profesionālam pārstāvim, bet kuram ir nepieciešams Reglamentā noteiktais pilnvarojums. Reglaments var paredzēt, vai un kādos gadījumos šāds juridiskās personas darbinieks var pārstāvēt arī citu juridisko personu, kuras uzņēmuma atrašanās vieta ir kādā no dalībvalstīm un kurai ir ekonomiska saistība ar pirmo juridisko personu.

(4) Reglaments var paredzēt īpašus nosacījumus kopējai pārstāvībai pusēm, kas darbojas kopīgi.

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Profesionālie pārstāvji

(1) Fiziskas un juridiskas personas Konvencijā paredzētajās procedūrās var pārstāvēt tikai profesionālie pārstāvji, kuri šim nolūkam ir ierakstīti Eiropas patentu iestādē uzturētajā sarakstā.

(2) Ikvienu fizisku personu var ierakstīt profesionālo pārstāvju sarakstā, ja tā atbilst zemākminētām prasībām:

(a) ir kādas dalībvalsts pilsonis;

(b) tās uzņēmējdarbības vai darba vieta atrodas vienā no dalībvalstīm;

(c) ir nokārtojusi kvalifikācijas eksāmenu.

(3) Ierakstu sarakstā veic pēc lūguma, kuram pievieno sertifikātus, kas apliecina, ka 2. daļā minētās prasības ir izpildītas.

(4) Personas, kuru vārdi ir profesionālo pārstāvju sarakstā, ir tiesīgas darboties visās Konvencijā paredzētajās procedūrās.

(5) Profesionālā pārstāvja darba veikšanas nolūkam katra persona, kura ir reģistrēta 1. daļā minētajā sarakstā, ir tiesīga iekārtot profesionālās darbības vietu vienā no dalībvalstīm, kurā var vest Konvencijā paredzētās lietas, ņemot vērā Centralizācijas protokolu, kas ir Konvencijas pielikums. Atteikt šīs tiesības šīs valsts institūcijas var tikai katrā atsevišķā gadījumā, ja to paredz publiskās drošības, likumības un kārtības normas. Pirms katra šāda atteikuma ir jākonsultējas ar Eiropas Patentu iestādes prezidentu.

(6) Eiropas Patentu iestādes prezidents var īpašos gadījumos atbrīvot no 2. daļas (a) punkta prasības ievērošanas.

(7) Profesionālo pārstāvību Konvencijā minētajās procedūrās tādā pat veidā kā profesionālie pārstāvji var veikt arī ikviena dalībvalstī juridiski kvalificēta persona, kurai profesionālās darbības vieta ir šajā valstī, tādā apjomā kā tai ir atļauts šajā valstī darboties par pārstāvi patentu lietās. Šī panta 5. daļas nosacījumus piemēro ar attiecīgām izmaiņām.

(8) Administratīvā padome var pieņemt noteikumus, kas nosaka:

(a) kvalifikācijas kritērijus un apmācības apjomu, kas nepieciešams, lai pielaistu pretendentus Eiropas kvalifikācijas eksāmena kārtošanai, un tā vada šo eksamināciju;

(b) Profesionālo pārstāvju institūta izveidošanu un atzīšanu atkarībā no Eiropas kvalifikācijas eksāmena rezultātiem vai saskaņā ar 163. panta 7. daļas noteikumiem;

(c) disciplinārpasākumus, kurus veic minētais institūts vai Eiropas Patentu iestāde.

VIII daļa

NACIONĀLO TIESĪBU IETEKME

I nodaļa

Konvertācija nacionālajā patenta pieteikumā

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Lūgums par nacionālās procedūras piemērošanu

(1) Norādītās dalībvalsts centrālā rūpnieciskā īpašuma iestāde piemēro nacionālo patenta piešķiršanas procedūru tikai pēc Eiropas patenta pieteicēja vai īpašnieka lūguma un šādos gadījumos:

(a) ja Eiropas patenta pieteikums tiek uzskatīts par atsauktu saskaņā ar 77. panta 5.daļas vai 162. panta 4. daļas nosacījumiem;

(b) citos nacionālajos likumos paredzētos gadījumos, kuros Eiropas patenta pieteikums ir noraidīts vai atsaukts, vai tiek uzskatīts par atsauktu, vai Eiropas patents ir anulēts saskaņā ar Konvenciju.

(2) Lūgums par konvertāciju jāiesniedz trīs mēnešu laikā no dienas, kad Eiropas patenta pieteikums ir ticis atsaukts vai kad paziņots par pieteikuma uzskatīšanu par atsauktu, vai pēc lēmuma par Eiropas patenta pieteikuma noraidīšanu vai lēmuma paziņošanas par Eiropas patenta anulēšanu. Konvencijas 66. pantā minētās sekas izbeidzas, ja lūgums nav iesniegts noteiktajā termiņā.

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Lūguma iesniegšana un pārsūtīšana

(1) Lūgums par konvertāciju jāiesniedz Eiropas Patentu iestādē un tajā jānorāda tās dalībvalstis, kurās vēlas izmantot nacionālo patenta piešķiršanas procedūru. Lūgumu uzskata par neiesniegtu, kamēr nav samaksāta maksa par konvertāciju. Eiropas Patentu iestāde pārsūta lūgumu kopā ar Eiropas patenta pieteikuma vai patenta lietas kopiju to dalībvalstu centrālajām rūpnieciskā īpašuma iestādēm, kuras lūgumā ir minētas.

(2) Gadījumā, kad pieteicējs ir paziņojis, ka Eiropas patenta pieteikumu uzskata par atsauktu saskaņā ar 77. panta 5. daļu, lūgums jāiesniedz tajā centrālajā rūpnieciskā īpašuma iestādē, kurā ir bijis iesniegts pieteikums. Šī iestāde, ievērojot nacionālās drošības intereses, pārsūta lūgumu kopā ar Eiropas patenta pieteikuma kopiju tieši to dalībvalstu centrālajām rūpnieciskā īpašuma iestādēm, kas ir minētas lūgumā. Konvencijas 66. pantā minētās sekas izbeidzas, ja šāda pārsūtīšana nav notikusi divdesmit mēnešu laikā no pieteikuma datuma vai, ja ir pieprasīta prioritāte, no prioritātes datuma.

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Konvertācijas formālās prasības

(1) Pārsūtītajam Eiropas patenta pieteikumam nepiemēro nacionālā likuma formālās prasības, kas ir atšķirīgas no tām vai kas ir papildus tām, kas paredzētas Konvencijā.

(2) Katra centrālā rūpnieciskā īpašuma iestāde, kurai pieteikums ir pārsūtīts, var prasīt, lai pieteicējs termiņā, kas nav mazāks par diviem mēnešiem:

(a) samaksā nacionālo pieteikuma maksu;

(b) iesniedz sākotnējā Eiropas patenta pieteikuma teksta un, ja tāds ir, Eiropas Patentu iestādē lietvedības laikā grozītā pieteikuma teksta tulkojumu vienā no valsts oficiālajām valodām, kuru pieteicējs vēlas iesniegt nacionālai procedūrai.

II nodaļa

Anulēšana un prioritātes tiesības

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Anulēšanas pamatojums

(1) Saskaņā ar 139. pantu Eiropas patentu var anulēt tikai balstoties uz dalībvalsts likumu, kam ir spēks tās teritorijā, ar šādu pamatojumu:

(a) ja Eiropas patenta objekts nav patentspējīgs saskaņā ar 52. līdz 57. pantu;

(b) ja Eiropas patents neapraksta izgudrojumu tik skaidri un pilnīgi, lai lietpratējs varētu izgudrojumu īstenot bez izgudrotāja papildu jaunrades;

(c) ja Eiropas patenta objekta apjoms ir plašāks nekā pieteikuma objekta apjoms vai, ja patentam, kas ir piešķirts pēc izdalītā patenta pieteikuma vai jauna pieteikuma saskaņā ar 61. pantu, apjoms ir plašāks par agrāk pieteiktā pieteikuma apjomu;

(d) ja aizsardzība, ko piešķir patents, ir tikusi paplašināta;

(e) ja Eiropas patenta īpašnieks nav tiesīgs saskaņā ar 60. panta 1. daļu.

(2) Ja anulēšanas pamatojums ietekmē Eiropas patentu tikai daļēji, anulēšanu paziņo attiecīgu patenta ierobežojumu formā. Ja nacionālais likums atļauj, tad ierobežojumu noformē grozītu pretenziju, apraksta vai zīmējumu formā.

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Agrāka vai tā paša datuma tiesības

(1) Katrā dalībvalstī Eiropas patenta pieteikumam un Eiropas patentam attiecībā uz nacionālo patenta pieteikumu un nacionālo patentu ir tāds pat prioritātes tiesību spēks kā nacionālam patenta pieteikumam un nacionālam patentam.

(2) Dalībvalsts nacionālam patenta pieteikumam un nacionālam patentam attiecībā uz Eiropas patentu, kurā ir norādīta šī dalībvalsts, ir tāds pat prioritātes tiesību spēks kā attiecībā uz nacionālo patentu.

(3) Katra dalībvalsts var noteikt, vai un ar kādiem nosacījumiem izgudrojums, kas ir aprakstīts gan Eiropas patenta pieteikumā vai patentā, gan nacionālā patenta pieteikumā vai patentā ar to pašu pieteikuma datumu vai, ja tam ir pieprasīta prioritāte, ar to pašu prioritātes datumu, var būt vienlaicīgi aizsargāts ar abiem patenta pieteikumiem vai patentiem.

III nodaļa

Dažādi noteikumi

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Nacionālie lietderīgie modeļi un lietošanas sertifikāti

Konvencijas 66., 124., 135.-137. un 139. pantu piemēro attiecībā uz lietderīgiem modeļiem un lietošanas sertifikātiem, kas reģistrēti vai deponēti tajā dalībvalstī, kuras likumi paredz šādus modeļus vai sertifikātus.

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Maksas par Eiropas patentu uzturēšanu spēkā

(1) Eiropas patentu spēkā uzturēšanas maksas var iekasēt tikai par gadiem, kas seko tiem gadiem, kas minēti 86. panta 4. daļā.

(2) Visas maksas, kuru termiņi iekrīt divu mēnešu intervālā pēc ziņas publicēšanas par Eiropas patenta piešķiršanu, uzskata par termiņā samaksātām, ja tās tiek veiktas šajā intervālā. Nacionālos likumos paredzētās papildus maksas nepiemēro.

IX daļa

ĪPAŠIE LĪGUMI

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Vienotie patenti

(1) Ikviena dalībvalstu grupa saskaņā ar īpašu līgumu, kas paredz, ka Eiropas patentam, kas piešķirts attiecībā uz šīm valstīm, ir vienots raksturs to teritorijās, var paredzēt, ka attiecībā uz šīm valstīm piešķir tikai vienoto Eiropas patentu.

(2) Šīs daļas nosacījumus piemēro dalībvalstu grupām, kas ir akceptējušas 1. daļā minēto kārtību.

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Eiropas Patentu iestādes specializētie departamenti

(1) Dalībvalstu grupa var uzdot Eiropas Patentu iestādei papildu uzdevumus.

(2) Lai veiktu dalībvalstu grupas uzdotos papildu uzdevumus, Eiropas Patentu iestādē var izveidot specializētus departamentus. Šos specializētos departamentus vada Eiropas Patentu iestādes prezidents; 10. panta 2. un 3. daļu piemēro ar attiecīgām izmaiņām (mutatis mutandis).

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Pārstāvība darbībām specializētajos departamentos

Dalībvalstu grupa var izstrādāt īpašus noteikumus pušu pārstāvībai darbībām departamentos, kas minēti 143. panta 2. daļā.

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Administratīvās padomes Izraudzītā komiteja

(1) Dalībvalstu grupa var izveidot Izraudzīto komiteju, lai pārraudzītu 143. panta 2. daļā minēto specializēto departamentu darbību; Eiropas Patentu iestāde nodod tās rīcībā personālu, telpas un aprīkojumu, kas nepieciešams tās pienākumu veikšanai. Eiropas Patentu iestādes prezidents ir atbildīgs par specializēto departamentu darbību Administratīvās padomes Izraudzītajai komitejai.

(2) Izraudzītās komitejas sastāvu, pilnvaras un funkcijas nosaka dalībvalstu grupa.

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Īpašo uzdevumu veikšanas izdevumu segšana

Ja Eiropas Patentu iestādei tiek uzdoti papildu uzdevumi saskaņā ar 143. pantu, dalībvalstu grupa sedz Organizācijas izmaksas šo uzdevumu veikšanai. Ja Eiropas Patentu iestādē tiek izveidoti specializēti departamenti šo papildu uzdevumu veikšanai, grupa sedz personāla, telpu un aprīkojuma izmaksas. 39. panta 3. un 4. daļu un 47. pantu piemēro ar attiecīgām izmaiņām (mutatis mutandis).

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Vienoto patentu spēkā uzturēšanas maksas

Ja dalībvalstu grupa ir noteikusi kopēju Eiropas patentu spēkā uzturēšanas maksu skalu, 39. panta 1. daļā minētās proporcijas rēķina, ņemot par pamatu kopējo skalu; vienotam patentam piemēro 39. panta 1. daļā noteikto minimālo lielumu. 39. panta 3. un 4. daļu piemēro ar attiecīgām izmaiņām (mutatis mutandis).

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Eiropas patenta pieteikums kā īpašuma objekts

(1) Piemēro 74. pantu, ja dalībvalstu grupa nav noteikusi citādi.

(2) Dalībvalstu grupa var noslēgt īpašu vienošanos par to Eiropas patenta pieteikumu tiesību nodošanu, ieķīlāšanu un jebkādām citām tiesiskām darbībām ar tiem attiecībā uz visām grupas dalībvalstīm, kuros šīs valstis ir norādītas.

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Kopēja valstu norādīšana

(1) Dalībvalstu grupa var paredzēt, ka šīs valstis tiek norādītas tikai kopā un, ka vienas vai dažu šo valstu norādīšana tiek uzskatīta par visu grupas dalībvalstu norādīšanu.

(2) Gadījumos, kad Eiropas Patentu iestāde ir norādītā iestāde 153. panta 1. daļas izpratnē, šī panta 1. daļu piemēro, ja pieteicējs starptautiskā pieteikumā ir norādījis, ka viņš vēlas iegūt Eiropas patentu vienā vai dažās grupas dalībvalstīs. Šo pašu punktu piemēro, ja pieteicējs starptautiskā pieteikumā norādījis vienu grupas dalībvalsti, kuras nacionālais likums paredz, ka šīs valsts norādīšanai ir tāda pati nozīme kā pieteikumam piešķirt Eiropas patentu.

X daļa

STARPTAUTISKIE PIETEIKUMI SASKAŅĀ AR PATENTU KOOPERĀCIJAS LĪGUMU

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Patentu kooperācijas līguma piemērošana

(1) 1970. gada 19. jūnija Patentu kooperācijas līgumu, turpmāk Kooperācijas līgumu, piemēro saskaņā ar šīs daļas nosacījumiem.

(2) Saskaņā ar Kooperācijas līgumu iesniegto starptautisko pieteikumu lietvedība var notikt Eiropas Patentu iestādē. Šajos gadījumos piemēro minētā Līguma noteikumus, papildinātus ar Konvencijas nosacījumiem. Kolīziju gadījumos piemēro Kooperācijas līguma noteikumus. Arī ekspertīzes lūguma iesniegšanas termiņš starptautiskiem pieteikumiem saskaņā ar Konvencijas 94. panta 2. daļu nebeidzas pirms termiņa, kas noteikts Kooperācijas līguma attiecīgi 22. vai 39. pantā.

(3) Starptautisks pieteikums, kurā Eiropas Patentu iestāde darbojas kā norādītā vai izraudzītā iestāde, tiek uzskatīts par Eiropas patenta pieteikumu.

(4) Gadījumos, kad Konvencijā ir atsauce uz Kooperācijas līgumu, tas nozīmē arī atsauci uz Līguma Reglamentu.

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Eiropas Patentu iestāde kā saņēmējiestāde

(1) Eiropas Patentu iestāde var darboties kā saņēmējiestāde Kooperācijas līguma 2 (xv). panta izpratnē tiem pieteicējiem, kas ir to Konvencijas dalībvalstu pilsoņi, pastāvīgie iedzīvotāji vai kuriem šajā valstī ir atrašanās vieta, kurā Kooperācijas līgums ir stājies spēkā.

(2) Eiropas Patentu iestāde var darboties kā saņēmējiestāde arī tajos gadījumos, kad pieteicējs ir tādas valsts pilsonis vai pastāvīgais iedzīvotājs, vai kuram šajā valstī ir pastāvīgā atrašanās vieta, kas nav Konvencijas dalībvalsts, bet kas ir Kooperācijas līguma dalībvalsts un kas ir noslēgusi ar Organizāciju līgumu, ar kuru Eiropas Patentu iestāde darbojas kā saņēmējiestāde šīs valsts nacionālās iestādes vietā saskaņā ar Kooperācijas līgumu.

(3) Ar Administratīvās padomes iepriekšēju piekrišanu Eiropas Patentu iestāde var darboties kā saņēmējiestāde jebkuram citam pieteicējam, pamatojoties uz attiecīgu līgumu starp Organizāciju un Pasaules Intelektuālā īpašuma organizācijas Starptautisko biroju.

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Starptautiskā pieteikuma iesniegšana un pārsūtīšana

(1) Ja pieteicējs savam starptautiskajam pieteikumam par saņēmējiestādi izvēlas Eiropas Patentu iestādi, viņš pieteikumu iesniedz tieši Eiropas Patentu iestādē. Tomēr 75. panta 2. daļu piemēro ar attiecīgām izmaiņām (mutatis mutandis).

(2) Gadījumos, kad starptautiskais pieteikums ir iesniegts ar kompetentas centrālās rūpnieciskā īpašuma iestādes starpniecību, attiecīgajai dalībvalstij jāveic visi nepieciešamie pasākumi, lai nodrošinātu pieteikuma pārsūtīšanu uz Eiropas Patentu iestādi savlaicīgi, lai pēdējā spēj izpildīt Kooperācijas līgumā noteiktos nosacījumus par pieteikuma pārsūtīšanu.

(3) Par katra starptautiska pieteikuma pārsūtīšanu jāsamaksā pārsūtīšanas maksa viena mēneša laikā no pieteikuma saņemšanas dienas.

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Eiropas Patentu iestāde kā norādītā iestāde

(1) Eiropas Patentu iestāde darbojas kā norādītā iestāde Kooperācijas līguma 2(xiii). panta izpratnē tām Konvencijas dalībvalstīm, kurās Kooperācijas līgums ir stājies spēkā un kuras ir norādītas starptautiskajā pieteikumā, ja pieteicējs informē starptautiskā pieteikuma saņēmējiestādi, ka viņš minētajās dalībvalstīs vēlas saņemt Eiropas patentu. Šo pašu noteikumu piemēro, ja pieteicējs starptautiskajā pieteikumā norāda dalībvalsti, kuras nacionālais likums nosaka, ka šīs valsts norādīšana nozīmē pieteikumu uz Eiropas patentu.

(2) Ja Eiropas Patentu iestāde darbojas kā norādītā iestāde, tās Ekspertīzes nodaļa ir kompetenta pieņemt lēmumus, kurus paredz Kooperācijas līguma 25. panta 2. daļas (a) punkts.

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Eiropas Patentu iestāde kā starptautiskā patentmeklējumu iestāde

(1) Eiropas Patentu iestāde darbojas kā starptautisko patentmeklējumu institūcija Kooperācijas līguma I nodaļas nozīmē tiem pieteicējiem, kas ir to dalībvalstu pilsoņi, pastāvīgie iedzīvotāji vai kuriem šajās valstīs ir pastāvīgā atrašanās vieta, kurās Kooperācijas līgums ir stājies spēkā, saskaņā ar līgumu, kas noslēgts starp Organizāciju un Pasaules Intelektuālā īpašuma organizācijas Starptautisko biroju.

(2) Eiropas Patentu iestāde ar Administratīvās padomes iepriekšēju piekrišanu darbojas kā patentmeklējumu institūcija arī citiem pieteicējiem saskaņā ar līgumu starp Organizāciju un Pasaules Intelektuālā īpašuma organizācijas Starptautisko biroju.

(3) Apelācijas padomes ir kompetentas lemt par pieteicēju protestiem pret Eiropas Patentu iestādes pieprasīto papildus maksu saskaņā ar Kooperācijas līguma 17. panta 3. daļas (a) punktu.

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Eiropas Patentu iestāde kā starptautiskās pirmējās ekspertīzes institūcija

(1) Eiropas Patentu iestāde darbojas kā starptautiskās pirmējās ekspertīzes institūcija Kooperācijas līguma II nodaļas nozīmē tiem pieteicējiem, kas ir to dalībvalstu pilsoņi, pastāvīgie iedzīvotāji vai kuriem šajās valstīs ir pastāvīgā atrašanās vieta, kurās minētā II nodaļa ir stājusies spēkā, saskaņā ar līgumu, kas noslēgts starp Organizāciju un Pasaules Intelektuālā īpašuma organizācijas Starptautisko biroju.

(2) Ar Administratīvās padomes iepriekšēju piekrišanu Eiropas Patentu iestāde darbojas kā starptautiskās pirmējās ekspertīzes institūcija arī visiem citiem pieteicējiem saskaņā ar līgumu starp Organizāciju un Pasaules Intelektuālā īpašuma organizācijas Starptautisko biroju.

(3) Apelācijas padomes ir kompetentas lemt par pieteicēju protestiem pret Eiropas Patentu iestādes pieprasīto papildus maksu saskaņā ar Kooperācijas līguma 34. panta 3. daļas (a) punktu.

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Eiropas Patentu iestāde kā izraudzītā iestāde

Eiropas Patentu iestāde darbojas kā izraudzītā iestāde Kooperācijas līguma 2(xiv). panta nozīmē, ja pieteicējs ir izraudzījies kādu no norādītajām valstīm, kas minētas 153. panta 1. daļā vai 149. panta 2. daļā, kurās minētā Līguma II nodaļa ir stājusies spēkā. Ar Administratīvās padomes iepriekšēju piekrišanu šos pašus noteikumus piemēro, ja pieteicējs ir tādas valsts pilsonis, pastāvīgais iedzīvotājs vai kuram pastāvīgā atrašanās vieta ir šajā valstī, kas nav minētā Līguma puse vai kurai nav saistoša šī Līguma II nodaļa, ar nosacījumu, ka pieteicējs ir persona, kurai Patentu kooperācijas savienības Asambleja ir nolēmusi saskaņā ar Kooperācijas līguma 31. panta 2. daļas (b) punktu atļaut iesniegt pieprasījumu par starptautisko pirmējo ekspertīzi.

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Starptautiskā patentmeklējuma ziņojums

(1) Neietekmējot 2. līdz 4. daļas nosacījumus, starptautiskā patentmeklējuma ziņojums saskaņā ar Kooperācijas līguma 18.pantu vai ikvienu deklarāciju saskaņā ar Līguma 17. panta 2. daļas (a) punktu un tā publicēšana saskaņā ar Līguma 21. pantu nozīmē Eiropas patentmeklējuma ziņojumu un paziņojuma par to publicēšanu Eiropas patentu biļetenā.

(2) Ar 3. daļā minētiem Administratīvās padomes lēmumiem:

(a) papildus Eiropas patentmeklējuma ziņojumu gatavo visiem starptautiskiem pieteikumiem;

(b) pieteicējs maksā patentmeklējuma maksu vienlaikus ar nacionālo maksu, kas noteikta Kooperācijas līguma 22. panta 1. daļā vai 39. panta 1. daļā. Ja patentmeklējuma maksa nav samaksāta termiņā, pieteikumu uzskata par atsauktu.

(3) Administratīvā padome var nolemt, kādos gadījumos un kādā apjomā:

(a) var iztikt bez papildus Eiropas patentmeklējuma ziņojuma;

(b) patentmeklējuma maksu var samazināt.

(4) Administratīvā padome var jebkurā laikā atcelt lēmumus, kas pieņemti saskaņā ar 3. pantu.

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Starptautiskā pieteikuma publicēšana un tā piegāde Eiropas Patentu iestādei

(1) Starptautiskā pieteikuma publicēšana, kurā Eiropas Patentu iestāde ir norādītā iestāde, saskaņā ar Kooperācijas līguma 21. pantu nozīmē arī Eiropas patenta pieteikuma publicēšanu, un par to tiek paziņots Eiropas patentu biļetenā. Šādu pieteikumu tomēr neuzskata par tehnikas līmeni 54. panta 3. daļas nozīmē, ja nav izpildīti 2. daļas nosacījumi.

(2) Starptautisko pieteikumu Eiropas Patentu iestādei jāpiegādā vienā no tās oficiālām valodām. Kooperācijas līguma 22. panta 1. daļā vai 39. panta 1. daļā minētā nacionālā maksa pieteicējam jāmaksā Eiropas Patentu iestādei.

(3) Ja starptautiskais pieteikums ir publicēts citā valodā nekā oficiālās Eiropas Patentu iestādes valodas, tad Iestāde publicē šo pieteikumu, kas piegādāts saskaņā ar 2. daļu. Saskaņā ar 67. panta 3. daļu pagaidu aizsardzība, kas paredzēta 67. panta 1. un 2. daļā, ir spēkā no šīs publikācijas dienas.

XI daļa

PĀREJAS NOTEIKUMI

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Administratīvā padome pārejas periodā

(1) 169. panta 1. daļā minētās valstis nozīmē savus pārstāvjus Administratīvajai padomei; Administratīvā padome pēc Vācijas Federatīvās Republikas valdības uzaicinājuma sanāk ne vēlāk kā divus mēnešus pēc Konvencijas stāšanās spēkā, it īpaši, lai nozīmētu Eiropas Patentu iestādes prezidentu.

(2) Pirmā Administratīvās padomes priekšsēdētāja amata izpildes laiks ir četri gadi no Konvencijas stāšanās spēkā.

(3) Divu pirmās Administratīvās padomes ievēlēto locekļu amata izpildes laiks ir attiecīgi pieci un četri gadi no Konvencijas stāšanās spēkā.

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Darbinieku pieņemšana pārejas periodā

(1) Līdz laikam, kad tiks pieņemti Dienesta noteikumi pastāvīgiem Eiropas Patentu iestādes darbiniekiem un nodarbinātības nosacījumi pārējiem darbiniekiem, Administratīvā padome un Eiropas Patentu iestādes prezidents, katrs savu pilnvaru ietvaros, pieņem vajadzīgos darbiniekus un noslēdz par to īstermiņa līgumus. Administratīvā padome var izdot vispārējus darbā pieņemšanas principus.

(2) Pārejas periodā, kura beigas nosaka Administratīvā padome, tā pēc konsultēšanās ar Eiropas Patentu iestādes prezidentu par Paplašinātās apelācijas padomes un Apelācijas padomju locekļiem var nozīmēt tehniski vai juridiski kvalificētus nacionālo tiesu un dalībvalstu iestāžu locekļus, kuri var turpināt savu darbību nacionālajās tiesās vai iestādēs. Viņus var nozīmēt uz laiku līdz pieciem gadiem, bet ne mazāku par vienu gadu. Viņus var nozīmēt atkārtoti.

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Pirmais atskaites periods

(1) Organizācijas pirmais atskaites periods ir no Konvencijas spēkā stāšanās dienas līdz tā paša gada 31. decembrim. Ja spēkā stāšanās diena iekrīt otrajā pusgadā, tad pirmo atskaites periodu pagarina līdz nākamā gada 31. decembrim.

(2) Pirmā atskaites perioda budžetu jāpieņem cik ātri vien iespējams pēc Konvencijas stāšanās spēkā. Līdz laikam, kad Organizācija saņem 40. pantā paredzētās pirmā budžeta iemaksas, dalībvalstīm pēc Administratīvās padomes lūguma un tās noteiktajā termiņā jāveic priekšiemaksas, kas tiks atskaitītas no to attiecīgajām iemaksām šajā budžetā. Priekšiemaksas tiek noteiktas saskaņā ar 40. pantā minēto skalu. 39. panta 3. un 4. daļu piemēro ar attiecīgajām izmaiņām (mutatis mutandis).

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Eiropas Patentu iestādes darbības lauka paplašināšana

(1) Eiropas patentu pieteikumus var iesniegt sākot ar dienu, kuru nosaka Administratīvā padome pēc Eiropas Patentu iestādes prezidenta ieteikuma.

(2) Administratīvā padome pēc Eiropas Patentu iestādes prezidenta ieteikuma var nolemt, ka no 1. daļā minētā datuma Eiropas patenta pieteikumu izskatīšana būs ierobežota. Šis ierobežojums var attiekties uz dažām tehnikas nozarēm. Tomēr jebkurā gadījumā tiek veikta izskatīšana par Eiropas patenta pieteikumu datumu piešķiršanu.

(3) Ja ir pieņemts 2. daļā paredzētais lēmums, Administratīvā padome nevar ierobežot turpmāku pieteikuma izskatīšanu.

(4) Gadījumos, kad Eiropas patenta pieteikuma izskatīšanu nevar turpināt 2. daļā minēto ierobežojumu dēļ, Eiropas Patentu iestāde par to paziņo pieteicējam un norāda uz iespēju lūgt pieteikuma konvertāciju. Pēc šāda paziņojuma saņemšanas Eiropas patenta pieteikumu uzskata par atsauktu.

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Profesionālā pārstāvība pārejas periodā

(1) Pārejas perioda laikā, kura beigas nosaka Administratīvā padome, neievērojot 134. panta 2. daļas nosacījumus, katru fizisko personu var ierakstīt profesionālo pārstāvju sarakstā, ja tā atbilst šādiem nosacījumiem:

(a) viņa ir dalībvalsts pilsonis;

(b) viņas uzņēmuma vai darba vieta ir vienā no dalībvalstīm;

(c) viņa ir tiesīga pārstāvēt fiziskas un juridiskas personas patentu lietās tās dalībvalsts centrālajā rūpnieciskā īpašuma iestādē, kurā atrodas viņas uzņēmuma vai darba vieta.

(2) Ierakstu sarakstā veic pēc lūguma, kuram pievienots centrālās rūpnieciskā īpašuma iestādes izsniegts sertifikāts, kurā minēts, ka 1. daļā minētie nosacījumi ir izpildīti.

(3) Ja kādā no dalībvalstīm 1. daļas (c) punktā minētās tiesības nav saistītas ar speciālu profesionālo kvalifikāciju, tad šīs valsts personām, kas lūdz ierakstīšanu šajā sarakstā darbībām patentu lietās attiecīgās valsts centrālajā rūpnieciskajā iestādē, jābūt šajā jomā nostrādājušām vismaz piecus gadus. Tomēr personai, kuras tiesības profesionāli pārstāvēt fiziskas vai juridiskas personas patentu lietās kādā no dalībvalstu centrālajām rūpnieciskā īpašuma iestādēm saskaņā ar šīs valsts likumiem ir oficiāli atzītas, nepiemēro prasību par praktisko darbošanos. Šajā gadījumā centrālās rūpnieciskā īpašuma iestādes izsniegtajā sertifikātā jānorāda, ka pieteicējs uz ierakstu sarakstā atbilst vienai no šajā punktā minētajām prasībām.

(4) Eiropas Patentu iestādes prezidents var atbrīvot no:

(a) 3. daļas pirmajā teikumā minētās prasības izpildes, ja pieteicējs iesniedz pierādījumus, ka viņš ir ieguvis nepieciešamo kvalifikāciju citādā veidā;

(b) 1. daļas (a) punkta prasībām īpašos gadījumos.

(5) Eiropas Patentu iestādes prezidents var atbrīvot no 1. daļas (a) punkta prasību izpildes, ja pieteicējs ir atbildis 1. daļas (b) un (c) punkta prasībām 1973. gada 5. oktobrī.

(6) Personas, kurām uzņēmuma vai darba vieta valstī, kas pievienojas Konvencijai, ir mazāk par vienu gadu pirms 1. daļā minētā pārejas perioda beigām vai tā rodas pēc pārejas perioda beigām, var saskaņā ar 1. līdz 5. daļas nosacījumiem tikt ierakstītas profesionālo pārstāvju sarakstā viena gada laikā no dienas, kad stājās spēkā šīs valsts pievienošanās Konvencijai.

(7) Pēc pārejas perioda beigām, katra persona, kuras vārds ir ierakstīts profesionālo pārstāvju sarakstā šī perioda laikā, var palikt šajā sarakstā vai pēc lūguma tikt tajā atjaunota, neskatoties uz 134. panta 8. daļas (c) punktā minētajiem disciplinārajiem pasākumiem, ja tā izpilda 1. daļas (b) punkta prasības.

XII daļa

NOSLĒGUMA JAUTĀJUMI

164. pants

Reglaments un Protokoli

(1) Reglaments, Protokols par atzīšanu, Protokols par privilēģijām un imunitātēm, Protokols par centralizāciju un Protokols par 69. panta interpretāciju ir Konvencijas neatņemama sastāvdaļa.

(2) Kolīziju gadījumos starp Konvencijas normām un Reglamenta normām, piemērojamas ir Konvencijas normas.

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Parakstīšana — ratificēšana

(1) Valstīm, kas piedalījās Starpvaldību konferencē par Eiropas sistēmas iedibināšanu patentu piešķiršanā, vai valstīm, kas bija informētas par šo konferenci un bija uzaicinātas tajā piedalīties, Konvencija ir atvērta parakstīšanai līdz 1974. gada 5. aprīlim.

(2) Konvencija ir jāratificē; ratifikācijas dokuments ir jānodod glabāšanai Vācijas Federatīvās Republikas valdībai.

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Pievienošanās

(1) Konvencijai var pievienoties:

(a) 165. panta 1. daļā minētās valstis;

(b) jebkura cita Eiropas valsts, ja to uzaicina Administratīvā padome.

(2) Jebkura valsts, kas ir bijusi Konvencijas dalībvalsts un pārstājusi tāda būt saskaņā ar 172. panta 4. daļu, var atkal kļūt par dalībvalsti, tai pievienojoties.

(3) Pievienošanās dokumenti jānodod glabāšanā Vācijas Federatīvās Republikas valdībai.

167. pants

Atrunas

(1) Katra dalībvalsts parakstīšanas vai ratifikācijas, vai pievienošanās dokumenta iesniegšanas laikā var izdarīt tikai tādas atrunas, kas ir minētas 2. daļā.

(2) Katra dalībvalsts var atrunāt tiesības, kas paredz, ka:

(a) Eiropas patenti, ja tie piešķir aizsardzību ķīmiskiem, farmaceitiskiem vai pārtikas produktiem kā tādiem, saskaņā ar likumu, kas piemērojams nacionālajiem patentiem, nav spēkā vai ir anulējami; šī atruna neattiecas uz aizsardzību, ko piešķir patents uz ķīmisku produktu ražošanas vai lietošanas paņēmienu, vai uz farmaceitiska vai pārtikas produkta ražošanas paņēmienu;

(b) Eiropas patenti, ja tie piešķir aizsardzību uz lauksaimniecības vai dārzkopības paņēmieniem, izņemot 53. panta (b) punktā paredzētos, saskaņā ar likumu, kas piemērojams nacionāliem patentiem, nav spēkā vai ir anulējami;

(c) Eiropas patentiem ir īsāks darbības termiņš par divdesmit gadiem saskaņā ar likumu, kas piemērojams nacionālajiem patentiem;

(d) tām nav saistošs Protokols par atzīšanu.

(3) Ikviena dalībvalsts atruna ir spēkā ne ilgāk par desmit gadiem no Konvencijas stāšanās spēkā. Tomēr, ja dalībvalsts ir izdarījusi atrunas, kas minētas 2. daļas (a) un (b) punktā, Administratīvā padome šai valstij var pagarināt minēto periodu ne vairāk kā par pieciem gadiem attiecībā uz visām vai daļu no izdarītajām atrunām, ja valsts iesniedz motivētu lūgumu, kas pārliecina Administratīvo padomi par šīs valsts nespēju iztikt bez šīm atrunām, ne vēlāk kā vienu gadu pirms desmit gadu perioda beigām.

(4) Ikviena dalībvalsts, kas ir izdarījusi atrunas, tās atsauc cik vien ātri iespējams konkrētajos apstākļos. Atsaukšanu izdara ar Vācijas Federatīvās Republikas valdībai adresētu paziņojumu, un tā stājas spēkā vienu mēnesi pēc šāda paziņojuma saņemšanas.

(5) Atrunas, kas bija izdarītas atsaucoties uz 2. daļas (a), (b) vai (c) punktu, piemēro Eiropas patentiem, kas piešķirti uz to Eiropas patenta pieteikumu pamata, kas ir iesniegti laika periodā, kad šīs atrunas ir spēkā. Šīs atrunas ir spēkā visu šo patentu darbības termiņu.

(6) Ikviena atruna zaudē spēku līdz ar 3. daļas pirmā teikumā minētā termiņa beigām vai, ja tajā minētais termiņš ir pagarināts, ar pagarinātā termiņa beigām, neietekmējot 4. un 5. daļā minētos nosacījumus.

168. pants

Piemērošanas teritorija

(1) Ikviena dalībvalsts savā ratifikācijas vai pievienošanās dokumentā var deklarēt, vai rakstiski paziņot Vācijas Federatīvās Republikas valdībai jebkurā laikā pēc iepriekšminētajiem notikumiem, ka Konvencija ir piemērojama vienā vai vairākās tās ārējās teritorijās, par kurām šī valsts ir atbildīga. Eiropas patents, kas piešķirts attiecībā uz šādu dalībvalsti ir spēkā arī tajās teritorijās, kurās minētais paziņojums ir stājies spēkā.

(2) Ja 1. daļā minētā deklarācija ir ratifikācijas vai pievienošanās dokumentā, tā stājas spēkā tajā pašā dienā, kad ratifikācija vai pievienošanās; ja deklarācija ir paziņojumā, kas iesniegts pēc ratifikācijas vai pievienošanās dokumenta iesniegšanas, šāds paziņojums stājas spēkā sešus mēnešus pēc dienas, kad Vācijas Federatīvās Republikas valdība saņem šo paziņojumu.

(3) Ikviena dalībvalsts jebkurā laikā var deklarēt, ka Konvenciju vairs nepiemēro attiecībā uz dažām vai visām teritorijām, par kurām tā bija paziņojusi saskaņā ar 1. punktu. Šāda deklarācija stājas spēkā vienu gadu pēc dienas, kad Vācijas Federatīvās Republikas valdība saņem šo paziņojumu.

169. pants

Spēkā stāšanās

(1) Konvencija stājas spēkā trīs mēnešus pēc tam, kad iesniegts pēdējais tādu sešu valstu ratifikācijas vai pievienošanās dokuments, kuru teritorijās kopumā 1970. gadā tika iesniegti vismaz 180 000 pieteikumu.

(2) Katra ratifikācija vai pievienošanās, kas notiek pēc Konvencijas spēkā stāšanās, stājas spēkā trešā mēneša pirmajā dienā pēc ratifikācijas vai pievienošanās dokumenta iesniegšanas.

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Sākotnējā līdzdalība

(1) Katra valsts, kas ratificē vai pievienojas Konvencijai pēc tās stāšanās spēkā, veic Organizācijai sākotnējo līdzdalības iemaksu, kas netiek atmaksāta.

(2) Sākotnējā līdzdalības iemaksa ir 5% no summas, kas aprēķināta saskaņā ar skalu, kas minēta 40. panta 3. un 4. daļā, kā procenti no citu dalībvalstu īpašās līdzdalības iemaksas iepriekšējā atskaites periodā, kas bija pirms datuma, kad konkrētās valsts ratifikācijas vai pievienošanās dokuments stājas spēkā.

(3) Gadījumā, kad īpašā līdzdalības iemaksa tuvākajā iepriekšējā atskaites periodā pirms 2. daļā minētā datuma nav prasīta, šajā punktā minētā līdzdalības skala ir tā skala, kas būtu piemērojama attiecīgai valstij pēdējā gadā, par kuru īpašā līdzdalības iemaksa tiktu prasīta.

171. pants

Konvencijas darbības laiks

Šī ir beztermiņa Konvencija.

172. pants

Pārskatīšana

(1) Konvenciju var pārskatīt dalībvalstu konference.

(2) Konferenci sagatavo un sasauc Administratīvā padome. Konference ir lemttiesīga, ja tajā ir pārstāvētas vismaz trīs ceturtdaļas dalībvalstu. Pārskatīto tekstu pieņem ar trim ceturtdaļām konferencē piedalījušos un balsojušo dalībvalstu balsu. Atturēšanās netiek uzskatīta par balsojumu.

(3) Pārskatītais teksts stājas spēkā, kad to ratificējušas vai tam pievienojušās tik dalībvalstis, cik ir noteikusi konference, un termiņā, kuru ir noteikusi konference.

(4) Tās dalībvalstis, kas nav ratificējušas vai pievienojušās pārskatītajam Konvencijas tekstam laikā, kad tas stājas spēkā, pārstāj būt par Konvencijas dalībvalstīm no šī laika.

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Strīdi starp dalībvalstīm

(1) Katru strīdu starp dalībvalstīm par esošās Konvencijas piemērošanu, kas nav atrisināts sarunu ceļā, pēc vienas no šo dalībvalstu lūguma, iesniedz Administratīvai padomei, kas pieliek visas pūles, lai panāktu vienošanos starp attiecīgajām valstīm.

(2) Ja šāda vienošanās nav panākta sešu mēnešu laikā, kopš Administratīvā padome pārzina šo strīdu, katra attiecīgā valsts var griezties Starptautiskajā tiesā (International Court of Justice), kuras lēmums ir galīgs.

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Denonsēšana

Ikviena dalībvalsts jebkurā laikā var denonsēt Konvenciju. Paziņojums par denonsēšanu jāiesniedz Vācijas Federatīvās Republikas valdībai. Denonsēšana stājas spēkā gadu pēc šāda paziņojuma saņemšanas.

175. pants

Iegūto tiesību saglabāšana

(1) Ja valsts pārstāj būt Konvencijas dalībniece saskaņā ar 172. panta 4. daļu vai 174. pantu, Konvencijā paredzētās jau iegūtās tiesības netiek skartas.

(2) Eiropas patenta pieteikumu, kurš ir izskatīšanas procesā, laikā, kad norādītā valsts pārstāj būt par Konvencijas dalībnieci, Eiropas Patentu iestāde turpina izskatīt, un ciktāl tas attiecas uz minēto valsti rīkojas tāpat kā tad, ja Konvencija pēc izskatīšanas būtu piemērojama šajā valstī.

(3) 2. daļas nosacījumus piemēro Eiropas patentiem, par kuriem šajā punktā minētajā datumā ir iesniegts un tiek izskatīts iebildums vai iebilduma iesniegšanas termiņš vēl nav pagājis.

(4) Šā panta nosacījumi neskar katras valsts, kas ir pārstājusi būt par Konvencijas dalībnieci, tiesības izskatīt visus Eiropas patentus saskaņā to Konvencijas tekstu, kuras dalībniece tā bija.

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Bijušo dalībvalstu finansiālās tiesības un pienākumi

(1) Katrai valstij, kas pārstāj būt par Konvencijas dalībnieci saskaņā ar 172. panta 2. daļu vai 174. pantu, īpašās līdzdalības iemaksu, kuru tā bija veikusi saskaņā ar 40. panta 2. daļu, Organizācija atmaksā tikai tajā termiņā un ar tādiem nosacījumiem, ar kādiem Organizācija atmaksā īpašo līdzdalības iemaksu citām dalībvalstīm tajā pašā atskaites periodā.

(2) 1. daļā minētā valsts pēc tam, kad tā pārstāj būt par Konvencijas dalībnieci, turpina maksāt 39. pantā paredzēto daļu par Eiropas patentu uzturēšanu, kas paliek spēkā šajā valstī, pēc likmes, kas bija spēkā tajā datumā, kad valsts pārstāja būt par dalībnieci.

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Konvencijas valodas

(1) Konvenciju, sastādītu vienā oriģinālā eksemplārā angļu, franču un vācu valodā, kur teksts katrā no šīm valodām ir vienlīdzīgi autentisks, nodod glabāšanai Vācijas Federatīvās Republikas valdības arhīvā.

(2) Konvencijas teksti, sastādīti dalībvalstu oficiālajās valodās, kas atšķiras no 1. daļā minētajām, pēc Administratīvās padomes apstiprināšanas tiek uzskatīti par oficiālajiem tekstiem. Kolīziju gadījumos, kas rodas dažādu tekstu interpretāciju dēļ, 1. daļā minētie teksti ir autentiskie teksti.

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Pārsūtīšana un paziņojumi

(1) Vācijas Federatīvās Republikas valdība izveido sertificētas Konvencijas kopijas un pārsūta tās parakstītājvalstu vai pievienojušos valstu valdībām.

(2) Vācijas Federatīvās Republikas valdība paziņo 1. daļā minētajām valstu valdībām:

(a) katru parakstīšanu;

(b) ratifikācijas vai pievienošanās dokumentu iesniegšanu glabāšanā;

(c) katru 167. pantā minēto atrunu vai atrunas atsaukšanu;

(d) katru deklarāciju vai paziņojumu, saņemtu saskaņā ar 168.panta nosacījumiem;

(e) Konvencijas spēkā stāšanās datumu;

(f) katru denonsēšanu, saņemtu saskaņā ar 174. pantu, un šādas denonsēšanas spēkā stāšanās datumu.

(3) Vācijas Federatīvās Republikas valdība reģistrē Konvenciju Apvienoto Nāciju Organizācijas Sekretariātā.

TO APLIECINOT, attiecīgi pilnvarotas personas, iesniegušas savas pilnvaras, kas ir atzītas par derīgām un atbilstoši noformētām, ir parakstījušas šo Konvenciju.

Izpildīts Minhenē tūkstoš deviņi simti septiņdesmit trešā gada oktobra mēneša piektajā dienā.

 

Protokols par Konvencijas 69. panta interpretāciju

Pieņemts Minhenē diplomātiskajā konferencē par Eiropas patentu piešķiršanas sistēmas izveidi 1973. gada 5. oktobrī

Konvencijas 69. pantu nevajadzētu interpretēt tādējādi, ka Eiropas patenta piešķirtais aizsardzības apjoms tiek saprasts kā tāds, kas burtiski un tieši izriet no pretenzijās lietoto vārdu nozīmes, aprakstu un zīmējumus izmantojot tikai pretenzijās esošās nenoteiktības novēršanas nolūkam. To nevajadzētu interpretēt arī tādējādi, ka pretenzijas kalpo tikai kā vadlīnijas un ka faktisko aizsardzību var paplašināt arī uz to, ko patenta īpašnieks, ņemot vērā lietpratēja viedokli par aprakstu un zīmējumiem, ir iecerējis aizsargāt. Gluži otrādi, tas ir jāinterpretē kā vidus pozīcijas atrašana starp šīm divām galējībām, kas vienlaikus dod taisnīgu aizsardzību patenta īpašniekam un saprātīgu noteiktības pakāpi trešām personām.

Protokols par jurisdikciju un lēmumu atzīšanu attiecībā uz tiesībām piešķirt Eiropas patentus

(Protokols par atzīšanu)

Pieņemts 1973. gada 5. oktobrī

I sadaļa. Jurisdikcija

1. pants

(1) Dalībvalstu tiesām saskaņā ar 2. līdz 6. pantu ir jurisdikcija izlemt prasības pret pieteicēju par tiesībām piešķirt Eiropas patentu attiecībā uz vienu vai vairākām dalībvalstīm, kas ir norādītas Eiropas patenta pieteikumā.

(2) Šī Protokola izpratnē termins "tiesas" ietver iestādes, kam, saskaņā ar dalībvalstu nacionālajiem likumiem, ir jurisdikcija izlemt (1) daļā minētās prasības. Katra dalībvalsts paziņo Eiropas Patentu iestādei par katru šādu iestādi, kurai ir piešķirta minētā jurisdikcija, un Eiropas Patentu iestāde attiecīgi informē pārējās dalībvalstis.

(3) Šī Protokola izpratnē "dalībvalsts" ir dalībvalsts, kas nav atteikusies no šī Protokola piemērošanas saskaņā ar Konvencijas 167. pantu.

2. pants

Saskaņā ar 4. un 5. pantu, ja Eiropas patenta pieteicēja dzīves vieta vai komercdarbības vieta atrodas vienā no dalībvalstīm, tiesvedību pret viņu ierosina šīs valsts tiesā.

3. pants

Saskaņā ar 4. un 5. pantu, ja Eiropas patenta pieteicēja dzīves vieta vai komercdarbības vieta nav kādā no dalībvalstīm, un ja pusei, kas iesniedz prasību par tiesībām uz Eiropas patentu, dzīves vieta vai komercdarbības vieta ir vienā no dalībvalstīm, pēdējās tiesām ir ekskluzīva jurisdikcija.

4. pants

Saskaņā ar 5. pantu, ja Eiropas patenta pieteikuma objekts ir darba ņēmēja izgudrojums, tās dalībvalsts tiesām, kuras likumi nosaka tiesības uz Eiropas patentu saskaņā ar Konvencijas 60. panta (1) daļas otro teikumu, ir ekskluzīva jurisdikcija tiesu lietās starp darba devēju un darba ņēmēju.

5. pants

(1) Ja puses strīdā par tiesībām uz Eiropas patentu panāk vienošanos, rakstiski vai mutiski, bet ar rakstisku apstiprinājumu, par to, ka konkrētās dalībvalsts tiesai vai tiesām jāizlemj šis strīds, tad šīs valsts tiesai vai tiesām ir ekskluzīva jurisdikcija.

(2) Tomēr, ja puses ir darba ņēmējs un darba devējs, (1) daļu piemēro tikai tad, ja nacionālā darba likumdošana atļauj šādas vienošanās.

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Gadījumos, kad nepiemēro ne 2. līdz 4. pantu, ne 5. panta (1) daļu, Vācijas Federatīvās Republikas tiesām ir ekskluzīva jurisdikcija.

7. pants

Dalībvalstu tiesas, kurās ir iesniegtas prasības, kas minētas 1. pantā, pašas pēc savas iniciatīvas izlemj, vai tām ir jurisdikcija, kas minēta 2. līdz 6. pantā.

8. pants

(1) Gadījumā, kad dažādu dalībvalstu tiesās notiek tiesvedība starp tām pašām pusēm par tām pašām prasībām, tiesa, kurā prasība ir iesniegta vēlāk, pati pēc savas iniciatīvas var noraidīt savu jurisdikciju par labu tai tiesai, kurā prasība ir iesniegta agrāk.

(2) Gadījumā, kad tās tiesas jurisdikcija, kurā prasība ir iesniegta agrāk, tiek apstrīdēta, tiesa, kurā prasība ir iesniegta vēlāk, var apturēt tiesvedību līdz pirmā tiesa pieņem galīgu lēmumu.

II sadaļa. Atzīšana

9. pants

(1) Saskaņā ar 11. panta (2) daļas nosacījumiem katras dalībvalsts galīgo lēmumu par tiesībām piešķirt Eiropas patentu attiecībā uz vienu vai vairākām Eiropas patenta pieteikumā norādītajām valstīm jāatzīst, neprasot īpašas procedūras ievērošanu citās dalībvalstīs.

(2) Tās tiesas jurisdikciju, kuras lēmums ir jāatzīst, un šāda lēmuma spēku nevar pārsūdzēt.

10. pants

Šī Protokola 9. panta (1) daļu nepiemēro, ja:

(a) Eiropas patenta pieteicējs, kurš nav apstrīdējis prasību, pierāda, ka dokumenti, uz kuru pamata ir sākta tiesvedība, nav viņam oficiāli un pietiekami savlaicīgi paziņoti, lai viņš varētu sevi aizstāvēt; vai

(b) pieteicējs pierāda, ka šis lēmums ir pretrunā ar citu lēmumu, kas pieņemts dalībvalstī tiesvedības procesā starp tām pašām pusēm, un kurš bija sākts pirms tiesvedības procesa, kurā pieņemtais lēmums ir jāatzīst.

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(1) Attiecībās starp dalībvalstīm šī Protokola nosacījumi dominē pār ikviena cita līguma pretējiem nosacījumiem par tiesu jurisdikciju un spriedumu atzīšanu.

(2) Šis Protokols neietekmē citu līgumu īstenošanu starp dalībvalsti un valsti, kam šis Protokols nav saistošs.

Protokols par Eiropas Patentu Organizācijas privilēģijām un imunitātēm

(Protokols par privilēģijām un imunitātēm)

Pieņemts 1973. gada 5. oktobrī

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(1) Organizācijas telpas ir neaizskaramas.

(2) Tās valsts, kurā atrodas Organizācijas telpas, amatpersonas nevar ieiet šajās telpās bez Eiropas Patentu iestādes prezidenta piekrišanas. Piekrišanu uzskata par saņemtu ugunsgrēka vai citas nelaimes gadījumā, kas prasa neatliekamu rīcību.

(3) Dienesta pasākumi un jebkuri citi procesuāli pasākumi Organizācijas telpās, kas ir cēlonis lietas ierosināšanai pret Organizāciju nav neaizskaramības pārkāpums.

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Organizācijas arhīvi un jebkuri citi tai piederoši vai tās turējumā esoši dokumenti ir neaizskarami.

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(1) Organizācija, tās oficiālo aktivitāšu sfērā, nav pakļauta tiesu varai un sprieduma izpildei, izņemot:

(a) tiktāl, ciktāl Organizācija ir noteikti atteikusies no šādas imunitātes konkrētā lietā;

(b) gadījumu, kad civilprasību ir iesniegusi trešā persona par zaudējumu atlīdzību, kas radušies Organizācijai piederoša vai tās uzdevumā strādājoša transporta līdzekļa izraisīta satiksmes negadījuma rezultātā, vai kas radušies satiksmes noteikumu pārkāpuma rezultātā, kurā ir bijis iesaistīts šāds transporta līdzeklis;

(c) šķīrējtiesas nolēmuma izpildi saskaņā ar 23. pantu.

(2) Organizācijas īpašumiem un līdzekļiem neatkarīgi no to atrašanās vietas ir imunitāte pret rekvizīciju, konfiskāciju, ekspropriāciju un sekvestrēšanu.

(3) Organizācijas īpašumiem un līdzekļiem ir imunitāte pret jebkāda veida administratīviem vai pagaidu ierobežojumiem, izņemot tādā apjomā, kas nepieciešams saistībā ar tādu transporta līdzekļu negadījumu izmeklēšanu vai novēršanu, kas pieder Organizācijai vai kas izpilda tās uzdevumus.

(4) Šā Protokola izpratnē Organizācijas oficiālās aktivitātes ir aktivitātes, kas ir noteikti nepieciešamas tās administratīvai un tehniskai darbībai, kas ir paredzēta Konvencijā.

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(1) Savas oficiālās darbības sfērā Organizācija, tās īpašumi un ienākumi nav apliekami ar tiešajiem nodokļiem.

(2) Ja Organizācija veic nozīmīgus pirkumus savas darbības nodrošināšanai, kuru cenā ir iekļauti nodokļi un valsts nodevas, dalībvalstīm pēc iespējas jāveic nepieciešamie pasākumi, lai Organizācijai atlaistu vai atmaksātu summu šo nodokļu un valsts nodevu apmērā.

(3) Nodokļu un valsts nodevu izņēmumi neattiecas uz valsts nodevām un nodokļiem, kas nav lielāki par maksājumiem par publisko dienestu pakalpojumiem.

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Organizācijas eksportētās vai importētās preces, kas paredzētas tās oficiālo aktivitāšu veikšanai, netiek apliktas ar importa vai eksporta valsts nodevām un maksām, izņemot maksājumus vai nodokļus par sniegtajiem pakalpojumiem, kā arī netiek pakļautas nekāda veida importa vai eksporta aizliegumiem un ierobežojumiem.

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Nekādi 4. un 5. pantā minētie izņēmumi netiek attiecināti uz Eiropas Patentu iestādes darbinieku personiskiem pirkumiem vai importētiem priekšmetiem.

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(1) Organizācijai piederošās lietas, kas iegūtas vai importētas saskaņā ar 4. vai 5. pantu, nevar pārdot vai atsavināt citādi, kā vien saskaņā ar dalībvalstu noteiktiem nosacījumiem par atbrīvojumu piešķiršanu.

(2) Lietu vai pakalpojumu pārvietošana starp dažādām Organizācijas ēkām netiek pakļauta nekādiem ierobežojumiem vai aplikta ar jebkādām maksām; attiecīgos gadījumos dalībvalstis veic visus nepieciešamos pasākumus, lai atdotu vai atmaksātu šīs maksas, vai lai atceltu šos ierobežojumus.

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Publikāciju un citu informatīvo materiālu pārsūtīšana, ko veic Organizācija vai ko saņem Organizācija, nekādā veidā netiek ierobežota.

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Dalībvalstis piešķir Organizācijai privilēģijas valūtas maiņas procedūrās, kas nepieciešamas tās oficiālo aktivitāšu veikšanai.

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(1) Katra dalībvalsts piešķir Organizācijai tādu pašu labvēlību attiecībā uz oficiālām komunikācijām un visu dokumentu pārsūtīšanu kā citām starptautiskām organizācijām šajā valstī.

(2) Organizācijas oficiālās komunikācijas nepakļauj cenzūrai neatkarīgi no šo komunikāciju veida.

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Dalībvalstis veic visus nepieciešamos pasākumus, lai atvieglotu Eiropas Patentu iestādes darbinieku ieceļošanu, uzturēšanos un izceļošanu.

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(1) Dalībvalstu pārstāvji, pārstāvju aizvietotāji, viņu padomnieki un eksperti, ja tādi ir, Administratīvās padomes vai citu tās izveidotu institūciju sanāksmju apmeklējumu laikā un savu ceļojumu laikā uz un no šādām sanāksmēm, bauda šādas privilēģijas un imunitātes:

(a) imunitāti pret arestēšanu vai aizturēšanu, pret personiskās bagāžas konfiscēšanu, izņemot gadījumus, kad tiek konstatēta likuma pārkāpuma izdarīšana, mēģinājums izdarīt pārkāpumu, vai kad pārkāpums jau ir izdarīts;

(b) imunitāti pret jurisdikciju, arī pēc savas vizītes beigām, attiecībā uz mutiskām un rakstiskām darbībām, kas veiktas, izpildot savas funkcijas; šādu imunitāti nepiemēro satiksmes noteikumu pārkāpuma gadījumā, ja tā izdarītājs ir kāda no iepriekšminētām personām, kā arī zaudējumu gadījumā, ko izraisījis transporta līdzeklis, kas pieder minētai personai vai kuru ir vadījusi šāda persona;

(c) visu oficiālo dokumentu un materiālu neaizskaramību;

(d) tiesības lietot šifrus un saņemt dokumentus vai korespondenci ar speciālu kurjeru vai aizzīmogotās somās;

(e) viņu pašu un viņu laulāto atbrīvojumu no visiem pasākumiem, kas ierobežo ieceļošanu, un atbrīvojumu no ārvalstnieku reģistrācijas formalitātēm;

(f) tādus pašus atvieglojumus valūtas lietās un tās apmaiņas kontrolē kādi ir piešķirti ārvalstu valdību pārstāvjiem viņu īslaicīgu oficiālu vizīšu laikā.

(2) Šī panta (1) daļā minētās privilēģijas un imunitātes tiek piešķirtas nevis personisku priekšrocību dēļ, bet lai nodrošinātu pilnīgu neatkarību to funkciju izpildē, kas ir saistītas ar Organizāciju. Attiecīgi, dalībvalstīm ir pienākums atteikties no imunitātes visos gadījumos, kad pēc šīs dalībvalsts ieskatiem šāda imunitāte traucē taisnīguma īstenošanai un ja no tās var atteikties bez kaitējuma tam nolūkam, kam tā bija piešķirta.

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(1) Eiropas Patentu iestādes prezidents saskaņā ar 6. pantu bauda tās pašas privilēģijas un imunitātes, kas ir piešķirtas diplomātiskiem darbiniekiem saskaņā ar 1961. gada 18. aprīļa Vīnes konvenciju par diplomātiskajām attiecībām.

(2) Imunitāti pret jurisdikciju nepiemēro, ja Eiropas Patentu iestādes prezidents ir izdarījis satiksmes noteikumu pārkāpumu vai radījis zaudējumus ar transportlīdzekli, kas viņam pieder vai kuru viņš ir vadījis.

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Eiropas Patentu iestādes darbiniekiem:

(a) pat pēc darba līguma beigām saglabājas imunitāte pret jurisdikciju par darbībām, ko tie veikuši izpildot savas dienesta funkcijas, gan rakstiski, gan mutvārdos; imunitāti nepiemēro satiksmes noteikumu pārkāpuma gadījumā, ja to ir izdarījis Eiropas Patentu iestādes darbinieks, kā arī gadījumā, kad ir radušies zaudējumi, ko izraisījis transporta līdzeklis, kas pieder darbiniekam vai ko ir vadījis darbinieks;

(b) ir atbrīvojums no militārā dienesta;

(c) ir piemērojama viņu visu oficiālo materiālu un dokumentu neaizskaramība;

(d) ir tie paši atvieglojumi un atbrīvojumi imigrācijas un ārvalstnieku reģistrācijas noteikumos, kas parasti tiek piešķirti starptautisko organizāciju darbiniekiem; tas pats attiecas arī uz viņu ģimenes locekļiem, kas veido daļu no viņu mājsaimniecības;

(e) ir tās pašas privilēģijas valūtas maiņas noteikumos, kādas parasti tiek piešķirtas starptautisko organizāciju darbiniekiem;

(f) ir tie paši atvieglojumi repatriācijas jautājumos, kādi tiek piešķirti diplomātiskajiem darbiniekiem starptautisku krīžu laikā; tas pats attiecas arī uz viņu ģimenes locekļiem, kas veido daļu no viņu mājsaimniecības;

(g) ir tiesības importēt beznodokļu režīmā savas mēbeles un personiskās lietas, uzsākot pirmo reizi dienestu attiecīgajā valstī, un beidzot dienestu šajā valstī, ir tiesības beznodokļu režīmā eksportēt savas mēbeles un personiskās lietas, ievērojot nosacījumus, kurus tās valsts valdība, kuras teritorijā šīs tiesības tiek izlietotas, uzskata par nepieciešamiem, un pakļaujoties šajā valstī iegūta īpašuma atsavināšanai, ja to paredz šīs valsts eksporta aizliegums.

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Eksperti, kas Organizācijas vārdā veic kādas funkcijas vai piedalās Organizācijas rīkotajās vizītēs, tādā apjomā, kas nepieciešams viņu funkciju izpildei, arī tās, kas tiek veiktas ceļojuma laikā un vizītes laikā, bauda šādas privilēģijas un imunitātes:

(a) pat pēc darba līguma beigām ar Organizāciju, viņiem saglabājas imunitāte pret jurisdikciju par darbībām, ko tie veikuši izpildot savas dienesta funkcijas, gan rakstiski, gan mutvārdos; imunitāti nepiemēro satiksmes noteikumu pārkāpuma gadījumā, ja to ir izdarījis eksperts, kā arī gadījumā, kad ir radušies zaudējumi, ko izraisījis transporta līdzeklis, kas pieder ekspertam vai ko ir vadījis eksperts;

(b) visu viņu oficiālo materiālu un dokumentu neaizskaramību;

(c) valūtas maiņas atvieglojumus, kas nepieciešama, lai pārsūtītu viņu atalgojumu.

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(1) Šī Protokola 13. un 14. pantā minēto personu Organizācijas maksātās amatalgas un piemaksas tiek apliktas ar nodokli Organizācijas labā saskaņā ar viena gada laikā no Konvencijas spēkā stāšanās dienas Administratīvās padomes izstrādātiem noteikumiem un nosacījumiem. No dienas, ar kuru sāk piemērot šos nodokļus, minētās amatalgas un piemaksas netiek apliktas ar nacionālo ienākumu nodokli. Dalībvalstis tomēr var aplikt ar nodokli ienākumus no citiem avotiem, atskaitot no ienākumiem minētās amatalgu un piemaksu summas.

(2) Šī panta (1) daļu nepiemēro pensijām un pensiju apdrošināšanas maksām, ko maksā Organizācija bijušajiem Eiropas Patentu iestādes darbiniekiem.

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Par darbinieku kategorijām, kurām pilnībā vai daļēji piemēro 14. panta nosacījumus un 16. panta nosacījumus, un par ekspertu kategorijām, kurām piemēro 15. panta nosacījumus, lemj Administratīvā padome. Dalībvalstīm periodiski tiek paziņoti šajās kategorijās ieskaitīto darbinieku un ekspertu vārdi, amati un adreses.

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Ja Organizācija izveido savu sociālās apdrošināšanas shēmu, Organizācijas un Eiropas Patentu iestādes darbinieki tiek atbrīvoti no nacionālās obligātās sociālās apdrošināšanas iemaksām, pamatojoties uz līgumiem ar dalībvalstīm saskaņā ar 25. pantu.

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(1) Šajā Protokolā minētās privilēģijas un imunitātes nav paredzētas, lai Eiropas Patentu iestādes darbinieki vai eksperti, veicot darbības Organizācijas vārdā, gūtu personiskas priekšrocības. Tās ir paredzētas vienīgi tādēļ, lai nekādos apstākļos netiktu traucēta Organizācijas funkcionēšana, kā arī, lai nodrošinātu minēto personu pilnīgu neatkarību.

(2) Eiropas Patentu iestādes prezidentam ir pienākums atteikt imunitāti, ja viņš uzskata, ka šāda imunitāte traucē normālu tiesvedību un ka, iztiekot bez šādas imunitātes, netiek kaitēts Organizācijas interesēm. Administratīvā padome var atteikt imunitāti prezidentam uz tiem pašiem pamatiem.

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(1) Organizācija vienmēr sadarbojas ar dalībvalstu kompetentām iestādēm, lai atvieglotu pienācīgu tiesvedību, lai nodrošinātu policijas noteikumu un publiskās veselības noteikumu, darba inspekcijas vai citas līdzīgas nacionālās darba likumdošanas ievērošanu un lai novērstu jebkādu ļaunprātīgu Protokolā minēto privilēģiju, imunitāšu un atvieglojumu izmantošanu.

(2) Šī panta (1) daļā minēto sadarbību var regulēt 25. pantā minētos papildu līgumos.

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Katra dalībvalsts saglabā tiesības ievērot nepieciešamo piesardzību savas drošības interesēs.

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Neviena dalībvalsts nav spiesta attiecināt 12., 13. pantā, 14. panta (b), (e) un (g) punktā un 15. panta (c) punktā minētās privilēģijas un imunitātes uz:

(a) saviem pilsoņiem;

(b) personām, kurām laikā, kad tās veic Organizācijas uzdotās funkcijas, šajā valstī ir pastāvīgā dzīves vieta un kuras nav kādas citas starpvaldību organizācijas darbinieki, kuras personāls ir iekļauts Organizācijā.

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(1) Katra dalībvalsts var iesniegt izskatīšanai starptautiskā šķīrējtiesā jebkuru strīdu par Organizācijas vai Eiropas Patentu iestādes darbinieku vai ekspertu, kas veic šīs iestādes uzdevumus, ja Organizācija vai tās darbinieki un eksperti ir pieprasījuši privilēģijas vai imunitātes, kas minētas Protokolā, apstākļos, kad šāda imunitāte nav bijusi atteikta.

(2) Ja dalībvalsts gatavojas iesniegt šķīrējtiesā prasību izšķirt strīdu, tā par to paziņo Administratīvās padomes priekšsēdētājam, kurš savukārt par to informē pārējās dalībvalstis.

(3) Šī panta (1) daļā minēto procedūru nepiemēro strīdiem starp Organizāciju un tās darbiniekiem vai ekspertiem par Dienesta noteikumiem vai nodarbinātības apstākļiem, vai attiecībā uz darbiniekiem— par Noteikumiem par pensijas shēmu.

(4) Par šķīrējtiesas nolēmumu apelāciju iesniegt nevar, tas ir galīgs; tas ir pusēm saistošs. Gadījumā, kad ir strīds par importu vai atlīdzības apjomu, šķīrējtiesas pienākums ir to izskaidrot pēc ikvienas puses lūguma.

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(1) Protokola 23. pantā minētā šķīrējtiesa sastāv no trim locekļiem, vienu šķīrējtiesnesi nozīmē tā valsts vai valstis, kas ir puse strīdā, otru šķīrējtiesnesi nozīmē Administratīvā padome un trešo šķīrējtiesnesi, kurš ir arī priekšsēdētājs, nozīmē minētie pirmie divi šķīrējtiesneši.

(2) Šķīrējtiesnešus izvēlas no grupas, kas sastāv no ne vairāk par sešiem šķīrējtiesnešiem, kurus ir norādījusi katra dalībvalsts, un no sešiem šķīrējtiesnešiem, kurus ir norādījusi Administratīvā padome. Šo grupu izveido pēc iespējas īsākā laikā pēc Protokola spēkā stāšanās, un to pārskata katru reizi, kad tas ir nepieciešams.

(3) Ja triju mēnešu laikā no 23. panta (2) daļā minētā paziņojuma kāda puse nav nosaukusi (1) daļā minētos šķīrējtiesnešus, šķīrējtiesneša nozīmēšanu pēc otras puses lūguma var izdarīt Starptautiskās tiesas prezidents, izvēloties no minētās grupas. Šo nosacījumu piemēro arī tad, ja to lūdz viena puse gadījumā, kad, viena mēneša laikā no otra šķīrējtiesneša nozīmēšanas dienas, pirmie divi šķīrējtiesneši nav varējuši vienoties par trešā šķīrējtiesneša nozīmēšanu. Tomēr šajos divos gadījumos, ja Starptautiskās tiesas prezidentam nav iespējas izdarīt izvēli vai ja viņš ir vienas strīdā iesaistītās valsts pilsonis, minētos nozīmējumus izdara Starptautiskās tiesas viceprezidents, ar noteikumu, ka viņš pats nav kādas strīdā iesaistītās valsts pilsonis; pēdējā gadījumā šķīrējtiesnešu nozīmēšanu izdara tāds Starptautiskās tiesas loceklis, kurš nav nevienas strīdā iesaistītās valsts pilsonis un kuru šai darbībai ir izvēlējies prezidents vai viceprezidents. Prasības iesniedzējas valsts pilsoni nevar izvēlēties par šķīrējtiesnesi, ja viņu ir norādījusi Administratīvā padome, nedz šādu pilsoni var iekļaut Administratīvās padomes izveidotajā grupā un nozīmēt no šīs grupas, ja viņu ir norādījusi prasības iesniedzējvalsts. Minēto kategoriju personas nevar izvēlēties par šķīrējtiesas priekšsēdētāju.

(4) Šķīrējtiesa pati izstrādā savus procesuālos noteikumus.

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Organizācija var pēc Administratīvās padomes lēmuma noslēgt papildlīgumus ar vienu vai vairākām dalībvalstīm, kas padara Protokola noteikumus par spēkā esošiem šajā valstī vai valstīs, kā arī noslēgt citus līgumus, kas nodrošina Organizācijas efektīvu darbošanos un sargā tās intereses.

Protokols par Eiropas patentu sistēmas centralizāciju un tās ieviešanu

(Protokols par centralizāciju)

Pieņemts 1973. gada 5. oktobrī

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(1) (a) Konvencijai stājoties spēkā, tās dalībvalstis, kas vienlaikus ir arī saskaņā ar Hāgas 1947. gada 6. jūnija līgumu dibinātā Starptautiskā Patentu institūta dalībvalstis, veic visus nepieciešamos pasākumus, lai nodrošinātu Starptautiskā Patentu institūta aktīvu un pasīvu, un visa personāla pāreju uz Eiropas Patentu iestādi ne vēlāk par Konvencijas 162. panta (1) daļā noteikto datumu. Šādu pāreju realizē saskaņā ar līgumu starp Starptautisko Patentu institūtu un Eiropas Patentu Organizāciju. Iepriekš minētās valstis un citas Konvencijas dalībvalstis veic visus nepieciešamos pasākumus, lai nodrošinātu šā līguma izpildi ne vēlāk par datumu, kas minēts Konvencijas 162. panta (1) daļā. Līdz ar šī līguma izpildi tās Starptautiskā Patentu institūta dalībvalstis, kas ir arī Konvencijas dalībvalstis, turpmāk apņemas izbeigt savu dalību Hāgas līgumā.

(b) Konvencijas dalībvalstis veic visus nepieciešamos pasākumus, lai nodrošinātu visu aktīvu un pasīvu saņemšanu un Starptautiskā Patentu institūta darbinieku pieņemšanu darbā Eiropas Patentu iestādē saskaņā ar (1) daļas (a) punktā minēto līgumu. Uzdevumus, kas palikuši saistoši Starptautiskajam Patentu institūtam laikā, kad Konvencija tiek atvērta parakstīšanai, it īpaši tos, kurus veica tā dalībvalstis, neatkarīgi no tā, vai tās kļūst par Konvencijas dalībniecēm, un tos uzdevumus, kurus valstis, kas laikā, kad Konvencija stājas spēkā, ir vienlaikus gan Starptautiskā Patentu institūta, gan Eiropas Patentu konvencijas dalībnieces, sāka pildīt Konvencijas spēkā