Good News for EPO Patent Applicants, Bad News for European Patent Translators : London Agreement Effective 1 May 2008 Cuts Patent Translation Costs

Outlaw.com reports in Cost of pan-European patent protection to plummet in May that the Chartered Institute of Patent Attorneys (CIPA) has published a February 4, 2008 article by Peter Prowse on the London Agreement to come into force on 1 May cutting European patent translation costs.

The French Senate in 2007 ratified the October 27, 2000 London Agreement on European Patents and the Cost of Translations so that enough signatories have now signed the agreement which goes into effect May 1, 2008.

The main provision of the London Agreement is Article 1:

Article 1
Dispensation with translation requirements

(1) Any State party to this Agreement having an official language in common with one of the official languages of the European Patent Office shall dispense with the translation requirements provided for in Article 65, paragraph 1, of the European Patent Convention.

(2) Any State party to this Agreement having no official language in common with one of the official languages of the European Patent Office shall dispense with the translation requirements provided for in Article 65, paragraph 1, of the European Patent Convention, if the European patent has been granted in the official language of the European Patent Office prescribed by that State, or translated into that language and supplied under the conditions provided for in Article 65, paragraph 1, of the European Patent Convention.

(3) The States referred to in paragraph 2 shall continue to have the right to require that a translation of the claims into one of their official languages be supplied under the conditions provided for in Article 65, paragraph 1, of the European Patent Convention.

(4) Nothing in this Agreement shall be construed as restricting the right of the States parties to this Agreement to dispense with any translation requirement or to apply more liberal translation requirements than thosereferred to in paragraphs 2 and 3.“

Download a .pdf copy of the full London Agreement.
Download the European Patent Office (EPO) .pdf explanation of the London Agreement.