Amendment to Rule 51(1) EPC
AMENDED RULE ABOUT ADVANCE PAYMENT OF 3RD YEAR RENEWAL FEE TO ENABLE PAYMENT OF 3RD YEAR RENEWAL FEE ON ENTRY TO PCT-EPO REGIONAL PHASE
The Administrative Council of the European Patent Organisation has approved an amendment of Rule 51(1) EPC to allow payment of the third year renewal fee up to six months before its due date. This enables Applicants to pay this renewal fee on entry into the European phase of a PCT Application. The amended rule will enter into force on 1 April 2018 and will apply to all applications for which the renewal fee for the third year is paid on or after 1 April 2018. Please note that as a consequence
- the 3rd year renewal fee may not be validly paid more than three months in advance for applications for which the third year renewal fee falls due before 1 July 2018;
- the 3rd year renewal fee can be validly paid as from 1 April 2018 for applications for which the third year renewal fee falls due between 1 July 2018 and 1 October 2018; and
- the 3rd year renewal fee may be validly paid six months in advance for applications for which the third year renewal fee falls due on or after 1 October 2018.
Please note that this change applies ONLY to the 3rd year renewal fee. All other subsequent renewal fees can still only be paid up to 3 months before their due date.
Since Hanna Moore + Curley does not charge a service fee for payment of the 3rd year renewal fee when this renewal fee is paid at the same time as filing an application for entry to the EPO Regional phase, this change in the EPO Rule is very helpful for our clients as it will save our clients having to pay any additional service fee for payment of the 3rd year renewal fee.
If you would like to discuss any aspect of law and practice before the EPO including these fee changes with us, please get in touch with any of our Hanna Moore + Curley attorneys.
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