European patents to cover Moldova (MD) with effect from 1 November 2015

October 2015

Moldova has signed up to an agreement with the EPO which means that from 1 November 2015, it will be possible to validate European patent applications and patents in the Republic of Moldova.

Validation for the Republic of Moldova is deemed requested for any European or international application filed on or after 1 November 2015.  It is not available for applications filed prior to that date, or for any European patents resulting from such applications.  This is essentially the same type of arrangement as announced between the EPO and Morocco earlier this year.  After the applicant requests validation in Moldova, the European patent will confer essentially the same protection as patents granted by the EPO for the now 38 member states of the European Patent Organisation.

The validation fee is EUR 200, which must be paid to the EPO within six months of the date on which the European Patent Bulletin mentions the publication of the European search report, or, where applicable, within the period for performing the acts required for an international application's entry into the European phase.  This is a similar procedure as applicants may be used to following regarding extension states.

The validation fee can still be validly paid late, within a two-month grace period, however, in that instance; a surcharge of 50% must also be paid.  If the designation fee has not been paid and further processing is available, the validation fee can still be paid along with the further processing concerning the designation fee.  If the validation fee is not paid in due time, the request for validation is deemed withdrawn.

In due course, a reference to Moldova as a validation state will be included in the EPO request for grant form (EPA/EPO/OEB 1001) and the form for entry into the European phase (EPA/EPO/OEB 1200).  

If clients who are filing new European or international applications on or after 1 November 2015 are interested in extending protection to Moldova, they should speak to their usual representative about the best course of action.

This update was prepared by Mark Lunt , Partner in our Sheffield office. 

If you would like further advice on this or any other matter, please contact Mark at  (Tel: +44(0) 114 274 3700), or your usual HGF representative or visit our Contact Page to get in touch with your nearest HGF office.