June 2018 | No. 06/2018


ePCT Update

A new release of the ePCT system (version 4.3) was deployed on 23 May 2018. Some of the new features are discussed below.

ePCT for applicants

ePCT-Filing now includes the following new features:

  • external signature:  following requests by a number of users, this new function allows an authorized signatory to apply a signature to draft documents that are held in ePCT without requiring access to the system1.  For further details, see:


  • further improvements to access rights management: when editing access rights, in addition to individual eHandshake users, it is possible to add an existing access rights group, either to replace all existing rights or as an additional access rights group;
  • addresses with no street address component:  when filling in an address in ePCT, including in the address book, it is now possible to indicate that no street address is applicable (previously, a street address was a mandatory element of the address);
  • declarations under PCT Rule 4.17(i) prepared using ePCT:  it is now possible to select multiple inventors in one operation.  Furthermore, where the language of the request form is one that requires transliteration into English (that is, Arabic, Chinese, Japanese, Korean, and Russian), declarations under Rule 4.17(i) will also be rendered with transliteration (this feature may be extended to other declarations in due course);
  • tips for preparing PDF files for upload into ePCT: a shortcut link to a video tutorial (available on the “Support” page) has been added to the “Documents” section in ePCT Filing; and
  • new document type:  the document type “Formal response to the Written Opinion of the IPEA” has been added to the list of documents for upload to the IPEA.

For further information on the above changes, including relevant screen shots, as well as information on other changes included in this latest release, please refer to “What's new in ePCT for applicants?” on the PCT eServices Support page at:


ePCT for receiving Offices, designated Offices and International Authorities

ePCT version 4.3 includes several new Office features and improvements based on feedback from Office users.  This version includes the following new features:

  • distribution of international applications and related tasks to Office examiners;
  • incorporation of standardized clauses and lookup function of cited documents in the search and examination reports action;
  • import into ePCT of new international applications filed electronically via PCT-SAFE or other Annex F compliant systems; and
  • important improvements to the collaborative search and examination features for IP5 Offices

For more details on the above features and ePCT system for Offices, please see the PCT web page “ePCT for Authorities and Offices” at:


For questions about any of the new features of ePCT for applicants and for Offices, you can also contact the PCT eServices Help Desk at:

e-mail:               pct.eservices@wipo.int

telephone:         (+41–22) 338 9523

or via the “contact us” link.

  1. Please note that this feature is not yet available for international applications filed with the United States Patent and Trademark Office as receiving Office as there are restrictions regarding image signatures because no attachments are permitted in ePCT when filing with that Office.
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