< Back to latest news & events


Montenegro to become the 39th member of the EPC

September 2022

From 1 October 2022 Montenegro will become a member state of the EPO.

European patent applications (including European Regional Phase applications derived from an International PCT application) which are filed on or after this date will automatically designate Montenegro in addition to 38 other countries. Any PCT application filed on or after 1 October 2022 will automatically include Montenegro for the purpose of obtaining a European patent. Up to and including 30 September 2022, an applicant has to specifically designate Montenegro by paying the Extension fee for this state. Nationals of Montenegro and persons having their principal place of business or residence in Montenegro will also be entitled from 1 October 2022 to file international applications with the EPO as receiving Office.

This is the first expansion of the EPO since 2010 when Serbia and Albania were admitted. The EPC has grown from 7 founding states in 1977 to what will be 39 states when Montenegro joins. Bosnia and Herzegovina will be the one remaining extension state. Among the validation states there are Morocco, Tunisia, Moldova, and Cambodia. Georgia is reportedly set to become a validation state in the near future.

This update was prepared by HGF Professional Standards Officer Dr Edward Pullicino.

Latest updates

Milan confirmed as third seat of Central Division

The Italian Foreign Office has published a press release announcing an agreement with France and Germany to set up a branch of the Central Division in Milan.  This agreement will …

Read article

Fashionably IP Podcast Series 3 – exploring hot topics in the world of fashion and intellectual property

We are delighted to launch series 3 of our Fashionably IP Podcast where we will be looking at important hot topics in the world of fashion and intellectual property. In …

Read article

Why should I register the Trade Mark(s) of my business? – 6 Top Tips

A trade mark is anything that identifies the origin of goods or services writes Rebecca Field, Partner & Trade Mark Attorney (pictured above). This includes the name of the product, …

Read article

Alright Cuthbert

The caterpillar war may have been settled last year, but it hasn’t stopped Aldi continuing to dig at M&S. There was the limited edition Cuthbert being sold to raise money …

Read article

Applications to opt-out pass the 100,000 mark

There is now less than three weeks to go until the UPC opens its doors on 1 June 2023.  On the 9th of May the UPC has passed the 100,000 …

Read article
Event - 13th, 22nd June 2023

The HGF IP in Healthcare Conference 2023

We are delighted to invite you to HGF’s ninth annual IP in Healthcare Conference. This year’s focus is the importance of strategy. We will review the latest intellectual property issues …

Event details