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h u t c h i n s o n  i p UK & EUROPEAN PATENT & DESIGN ATTORNEYS
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We offer a fully fixed-fee service for entering the UK national phase of the PCT or the European regional phase of the PCT.  Please contact us for further  information and/or a quotation.

DEADLINE:

The deadline for entering the UK or European national/regional phase of the PCT is:

31-months

from the PCT application’s filing or priority date (whichever is sooner).  For an up-to-date list of the deadlines for entering the national or regional phase of the PCT in other countries, please click here.

LATE ENTRY INTO THE UK NATIONAL PHASE OF THE PCT:

If the 31-month deadline is missed, then it is still be possible to enter the UK national phase up to two months late (i.e. 33 months from the PCT application’s filing or priority date) upon payment of a small surcharge (currently £135).  

Beyond 33 months, late entry can only be effected if the failure to enter the UK national phase on-time was “unintentional”.  The UKIPO imposes a strict test in this regard - there must have been an underlying intention to enter the UK national phase (i.e. not the European regional phase and to validate in the UK later) and it is also necessary to demonstrate that the failure to timely enter the UK national phase was as a result of an oversight, mistake or other relevant circumstance.

LATE ENTRY INTO THE EUROPEAN REGIONAL PHASE OF THE PCT:

If the 31-month deadline is missed, then the EPO will issue a notice stating that the European patent application is deemed withdrawn.  This notice usually takes a month or so to issue.  The applicant then has a period of 2-months, beginning on the date of notification of deemed withdrawal, to enter the European regional phase of the PCT using “further processing”.  Further processing involves filing a request, and paying a further processing fee, which is 50% of the official fees, plus a further processing fee (currently €240) in respect of the request for examination.

After the further processing period, it may still be possible to apply to restore the application via the “restitutio in integrum” procedure. Restitutio is very much a last resort option, and is granted at the discretion of the EPO.

WHAT WE NEED:

All we need to be able to act for you are:

It’s as simple as that - we can usually obtain everything we need from WIPO’s or the EPO’s online file wrapper!  If the application is not in English, then we’ll also need a translation and we can advise you about the specific requirements upon request.  Also, if you have any special instructions, such as a change of applicant, amendments to be filed upon national/regional phase entry, etc., then please send us these too.  If anything further is required, we’ll let you know.

COSTS:

The official fees due for UK national phase entry are: the national phase filing fee (£30); the search fee (£100); and the examination fee (£80).  Our professional fee for attending to entering the UK national national phase of the PCT is just £500 + VAT.**

The official fees due for EP regional phase entry are: the filing fee (€120); the search fee* (€1285); the examination fee (€1620); and the designation fee (€580).  Additionally, the 3rd year renewal fee (€465) may also be due, depending on the PCT application’s filing date, and if there are more than 15 claims, then excess claims fees will also be payable (€235-€580, per claim). We offer a re-drafting service, which can reduce the excess claims fee cost significantly.  Also, if protection is required in any of the “extension states”, then a further fees will also be due.  Our professional fee for attending to entering the EP regional phase of the PCT is just £500 + VAT.**

*The search fee is waived if the International Search Report was drawn-up by the EPO, the Swedish, Austrian or Spanish Patent Offices.  The Search fee is reduced if the International Search Report was drawn-up by the US, Russian, Australian, Chinese or Japanese patent offices.

**Please note that official fees are subject to change without notice and are outside our control

A NOTE ABOUT VAT AND FOREIGN EXCHANGE:

UK value-added tax (“VAT”) is currently chargeable at 20%, but does not attach to statutory fees.  If you are based outside the EU, then VAT may not be applicable.   If you are a VAT-registered business established within the EU, then the “reverse charge” procedure may be used eliminate the VAT.  We re-charge foreign currency purchases at cost, without any “uplift”.

ONGOING PROSECUTION, GRANT, VALIDATION AND RENEWALS:

We offer a full prosecution service and give you the option of deciding how much involvement you need from us.  We can simply forward official correspondence at low cost for your to handle, or we can provide detailed analysis, advice and recommendations on a fixed-fee basis.  We can attend to grant, validation, and renewals, or we can pass that back to you to handle yourselves - the choice is yours.

Our core purpose is to “add value” and will not engage in unnecessary work on your behalf.  We do not charge for our time - period - because we believe that our unique, 100% fixed-fee pricing policy forces us to work quickly and efficiently, and delivers cost certainty for you.

CONVERT AN INTERNATIONAL (PCT) PATENT APPLICATION INTO A UK NATIONAL PHASE, OR INTO A EUROPEAN REGIONAL PHASE, PATENT APPLICATION

uk & ep national phase of the pct

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Related services:

Re-drafting for EPO compliance

EP(UK) validation

Patent renewals

Patent filing and prosecution

European patents

Patent opposition