The IPKat should not need to be reminding his patent attorney readers about this, but tomorrow 1 October 2010 is the final day in many cases for filing divisional applications at the EPO (see the IPKat's previous post here for a good starting point), as a result of the EPO Administrative Council decision CA/D 2/09.
Even though applicants and attorneys have had over a year to prepare, there will inevitably be something of a last minute rush to make sure all those divisionals that might be needed are on file by midnight tomorrow. Will the EPO's fax machines and online system manage to cope with the load?
The IPKat knows that many hard-working people both at the EPO and within patent attorney firms will be struggling at the moment to cope with the excessive load of applications, and would like to express his sympathy for all those adversely affected. He would be interested to hear any stories of how things are going (or not, as the case may be). If you have the time, please chip in using the weblog's comment facility (anonymously, if necessary).
As a final tip, according to the Notice of the President dated 12 July 2007 (Special Edition No. 3, OJ EPO 2007), applications can be filed at the EPO's offices in Munich, The Hague or Berlin, in particular at the following fax numbers:
+49 (0)89 2399-4465
+31 (0)70 340-3016
+49 (0)30 25901-840
Other things to do in Munich on 1 October here.
1 October 2010 Update: Thanks to a comment, the IPKat has been pointed to this notice from the EPO, which states:
"The European Patent Office (EPO) has been informed of an email containing a hoax announcement purporting to be from the EPO in which the public is given the impression that the Office's fax and online filing services will not be available from 30 September 2010 to 6 am on 4 October 2010, due to maintenance and updating of the Office's telecommunication facilities.The IPKat, who has not had sight of this email, is intrigued. Can anyone shed any further light?
The European Patent Office informs all concerned that this notice is completely false and that all electronic filing facilities at the European Patent Office (online and fax) are fully available.
The Office reserves the right to take legal steps against the person(s) who disseminated this false information."