World Intellectual Property Organization

Administrative Instructions under the Patent Cooperation Treaty

Section 705bis
Processing in Electronic Form of International Applications Filed on Paper;
Home Copy, Record Copy and Search Copy

(a)  Where an international application is filed on paper, it may, subject to this Part, be processed and kept as a complete and accurate copy in electronic form prepared by the receiving Office, the International Searching Authority, the International Preliminary Examining Authority or the International Bureau. Any receiving Office, International Searching Authority or International Preliminary Examining Authority which proceeds under this paragraph shall notify the International Bureau accordingly.17

(b)  Pursuant to paragraph (a) and for the purposes of Article 12, where an international application is filed on paper: 

(i) the receiving Office may keep a copy in electronic form referred to in that paragraph as the home copy;

(ii) the International Bureau may keep a copy in electronic form referred to in that paragraph as the record copy;

(iii) the International Searching Authority may keep a copy in electronic form referred to in that paragraph as the search copy.

(c)  Where a copy in electronic form is kept as the record copy under paragraph (b)(ii), the original of the international application as filed on paper shall be kept, for a period of at least 10 years from the international filing date, by the International Bureau or, where so agreed by the receiving Office and the International Bureau, by the receiving Office on behalf of the International Bureau. The original shall be marked with the words "INTERNATIONAL APPLICATION – ORIGINAL AS FILED ON PAPER (SECTION 705bis)" or their equivalent in the language of publication of the international application on the bottom of the first page of the request and of the first page of the description.18

(d)  Where, before the expiration of the period referred to in paragraph (c), the International Bureau finds, upon request for correction made by the applicant or otherwise, that a copy in electronic form kept as the record copy under paragraph (b)(ii) is not in fact a complete and accurate copy of the original kept under paragraph (c), it shall correct the record copy so as to bring it into conformity with the original. If the receiving Office, the International Searching Authority, the International Preliminary Examining Authority or a designated or elected Office considers that the International Bureau should make a finding under the first sentence of this paragraph, it shall call the relevant facts to the attention of the International Bureau.

(e)  Where the International Bureau has corrected the record copy in accordance with paragraph (d), it shall promptly notify the applicant, publish the corrected international application together with a revised front page, and publish a notice of this fact in the Gazette. Section 422(a)(i) to (v) shall apply mutatis mutandis with regard to the notification of the receiving Office, the International Searching Authority, the International Preliminary Examining Authority and the designated and elected Offices. 

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17  Editor’s Note:  Notifications under Section 705bis(a) should contain information as to the types of electronic document formats and electronic packages that are used by the Office as well as to the means of transmission and any other appropriate information aiming at facilitating the exchange of documents.

18  Editor’s Note:  In principle, receiving Offices should mark the original at the time of its receipt but they could also mark the original when it is relied upon for the purposes of the correction of the record copy under Section 705bis(d).

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