The five largest intellectual property offices in the world (IP5 Offices) - JPO (Japan), CNIPA (China), EPO (Europe), KIPO (South Korea), and USPTO (USA) - started an IP5 PPH pilot program, on January 6, 2014, that made three types of PPH (Normal, MOTTAINAI, and PCT-PPH) available among the five Offices.
Common PPH request form
The IP5 Offices developed a model common PPH request form and provided instructions regarding the common structure of the request forms adopted by IP5 and differences in some sections of those forms.
For datails, see the web page of the IP5 Offices.
Clarification of IP5 PPH requirements
The IP5 Offices have discussed to clarify IP5 PPH requirements to help users easily understand practical requirements at each Office and to enhance the transparency and user-friendliness of the program. The JPO asked each Office for clarification on its practical requirements and reports as follows:
PPH request period
- At the KIPO, it is possible to participate in the PPH not only when examination has not begun, but also when examination has already begun.
- At the JPO, EPO, CNIPA, and USPTO, it is required that substantive examination of the application for which participation in the PPH is requested has not begun.
- At the EPO, "the substantive examination has begun" means an examination starting date has been generated. The examination starting date is visible for unpublished applications only at the request of the applicant or his representative or by inspecting the file using MyFiles service, for published applications to all in the European Patent Register.
- At the JPO, CNIPA, and USPTO, "the substantive examination has begun" means any office action regarding the substantive examination has been issued.
Number of opportunities given to the applicant to correct certain specified defects
- At the JPO, the applicant is offered multiple opportunities to correct defects.
- At the KIPO, CNIPA, and USPTO, when the office finds new defects which have not been notified, an opportunity for the correction is given to the applicant.
- At the EPO, all defects in the PPH request are notified to the applicant, and the applicant is given only one opportunity to correct.