With the “Patent Prosecution Highway”, it is possible to obtain a fast-track patent examination for a Japanese or American application with corresponding European application and with at least one claim indicated to be patentable in the European Patent Office. The reciprocal is also possible.
Said application must be:
– an American or Japanese application claiming the priority of a European, or
– a PCT application (application filed under the Patent Cooperation Treaty (PCT)).
In addition, for a PCT application and when the European Patent Office was responsible for search or examination procedure during the international phase and considered some claims as patentable, the applicant may request a fast-track patent examination procedure at the Japanese or American patent office.
The reciprocal is also possible.
The interest to request a preliminary examination for a PCT application is thereby increased. The international preliminary examination is optional, but opens a dialogue with a patent office in charge of the case, in order to achieve a positive final search report. A positive final search report allows, for instance, a fast-track patent examination procedure at the Japanese or American office after a positive opinion of the European Patent Office.
The “Patent Prosecution Highway”, has recently been the subject of a supplementary agreement between the United States and the Republic of Korea.
Feel free to contact us for more details on these fast-track patent examination procedures.