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European validation overview
This page provides a very basic overview of the European validation process. For more foreign filing information, news and tips, you can:
- Browse the European validation content in our blog.
- Download our European validation e-kit, containing an overview of the process and country-specific information.
- Call or email one of our IP professionals in the office nearest you.
Filing a European patent application
To pursue patent protection in Europe, you typically file a single European patent application with the EPO. This application, by default, designates all of the European contracting states.
After filing, your European patent application is examined by the EPO. Your European attorney will then exchange correspondence with the EPO until any objections have been resolved.
Validating a European patent
Once the European examiner's objections have been resolved, the EPO will issue a Notice of Intention to Grant (also referred to as a 71(3) notice). This gives your European attorney four months to lodge a translation of your claims into English, French and German, and pay printing and grant fees to the EPO.
Once this is complete, the EPO will grant your patent. The formal Decision to Grant your European patent is published in the European Patent Bulletin. You have three months from that publication date to validate your patent in the individual European countries where you want protection.
It's important to note that your European patent will only extend to those countries in which you choose to validate the patent. The rights will lapse in any countries where you don't validate.
What is validation?
The exact process of validation differs in each country, but generally involves paying a fee and (where necessary) lodging a translation of either the claims or the entire patent specification. It is also usual to record a local address for service in the individual countries.
Each European contracting state has its own requirements for validation. Download inovia's European validation e-kit for more information on the filing specifics of each country.
Once validated, you do not need to go through any further prosecution in the individual European countries. Your patent will remain active as long as you continue to pay the yearly annuities.
European validation and inovia
European patent validation is a relatively simple process. It is much easier than drafting a patent specification or responding to a patent office examination report. But it's important to use a provider who is intimately familiar with the relevant deadlines, forms, fees and requirements for each of your chosen countries. You must also be sure that the local representative is of high quality, particularly if they're responsible for preparing translations.
inovia.com makes validation simple. With a 1-click quote, you get an accurate, itemized total estimate, which lists each country's government and translation fees. Our European agents ensure that all deadlines and requirements are met.
Get started now with a 1-click quote for your European validation.