Patent Translations into Languages of EPO’s Contracting States

Patent Translation Services for EPO Member Countries

Is your client thinking about filing an application with the European Patent Office (EPO)? Accurate patent translations play an important role in every stage of the process, and shouldn’t be gambled with.

The European Patent Office has three official languages: English, French and German. It permits the filing of an application in one of its three official languages.

Shortly before the grant of a patent, the applicant will be asked to file translations of the claims in the other two official languages of the EPO, in accordance with Rule 51(4) of the European Patent Convention (EPC), which reads:

“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 non-extendable period to be specified, which may not be less than two months or more than four months. 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.”

An issued EPO patent “is nothing more than a conduit to enter European member states”. From that point on, the process will be governed by EPC, Article 65, which reads:

“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.”

Given the fact that 32 counties are currently members of the EPO, it is likely that your client will be needing not only German and French patent translations, but may also need Bulgarian document translations; Czech translation; Danish translations; Dutch translation; Estonian translations; Finnish translations; Greek document translations; Hungarian translations; Icelandic translations; Irish Gaelic translations; Italian translations; Latvian translations; Lithuanian document translations; Luxembourgish translations; Maltese translations; Polish translations; Portuguese translations; Romanian document translations; Slovak translations; Slovenian translations; Spanish translations; Swedish translations; and Turkish document translations.

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