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Law & practice

Extension of European patents to Serbia and Montenegro

OJ EPO 2004, 563

1. On 26 November 2001, the President of the European Patent Office and the Federal Minister of Economy and Internal Trade of the Federal Republic of Yugoslavia signed an agreement on co-operation in the field of patents (Co-operation and Extension Agreement).

2. This agreement enters into force on 1 November 2004. From this date it will be possible to extend the protection conferred by European patent applications and patents to Serbia and Montenegro (formerly known as the Federal Republic of Yugoslavia). Extended European patent applications and patents will enjoy essentially the same protection in Serbia and Montenegro as the patents granted by the EPO for the currently 29 member states of the European Patent Organisation.

3. Articles 120-129 of the Serbian and Montenegrin Patent Act as in force since 10 July 2004 govern the extension of European patents in Serbia and Montenegro.

4. Extension occurs at the applicant's request.

4.1 Extension to Serbia and Montenegro is deemed requested for any European and international patent application filed on or after 1 November 2004. Extension to Serbia and Montenegro is not available for applications filed prior to that date, or for any European patents resulting from such applications. The extension fee is EUR 102. It must be paid to the EPO within the time limits prescribed in the EPC for paying designation fees (Article 79(2) EPC, Rule 107(1)(d) EPC). After expiry of the relevant basic time limit, the extension fee can still be validly paid within the period of grace for the payment of designation fees, provided that within that period a surcharge of 50% is also paid.

4.2 If the extension fee is not paid in due time, the request for extension is deemed withdrawn. Further information concerning the extension of European patent applications and patents to Serbia and Montenegro will be published in later issues of the Official Journal.