World Intellectual Property Organization

Regulations under the PCT

Rule 90
Agents and Common Representatives

90.1       Appointment as Agent

(a)  A person having the right to practice before the national Office with which the international application is filed or, where the international application is filed with the International Bureau, having the right to practice in respect of the international application before the International Bureau as receiving Office may be appointed by the applicant as his agent to represent him before the receiving Office, the International Bureau, the International Searching Authority, any Authority specified for supplementary search and the International Preliminary Examining Authority.

(b)  A person having the right to practice before the national Office or intergovernmental organization which acts as the International Searching Authority may be appointed by the applicant as his agent to represent him specifically before that Authority.

(b-bis)  A person having the right to practice before the national Office or intergovernmental organization which acts as the Authority specified for supplementary search may be appointed by the applicant as his agent to represent him specifically before that Authority.

(c)  A person having the right to practice before the national Office or intergovernmental organization which acts as the International Preliminary Examining Authority may be appointed by the applicant as his agent to represent him specifically before that Authority.

(d)  An agent appointed under paragraph (a) may, unless otherwise indicated in the document appointing him, appoint one or more sub-agents to represent the applicant as the applicant's agent:

(i)  before the receiving Office, the International Bureau, the International Searching Authority, any Authority specified for supplementary search and the International Preliminary Examining Authority, provided that any person so appointed as sub-agent has the right to practice before the national Office with which the international application was filed or to practice in respect of the international application before the International Bureau as receiving Office, as the case may be;

(ii)  specifically before the International Searching Authority, any Authority specified for supplementary search or the International Preliminary Examining Authority, provided that any person so appointed as sub-agent has the right to practice before the national Office or intergovernmental organization which acts as the International Searching Authority, the Authority specified for supplementary search or the International Preliminary Examining Authority, as the case may be.

90.2       Common Representative

(a)  Where there are two or more applicants and the applicants have not appointed an agent representing all of them (a "common agent") under Rule 90.1(a), one of the applicants who is entitled to file an international application according to Article 9 may be appointed by the other applicants as their common representative.

(b)  Where there are two or more applicants and all the applicants have not appointed a common agent under Rule 90.1(a) or a common representative under paragraph (a), the applicant first named in the request who is entitled according to Rule 19.1 to file an international application with the receiving Office shall be considered to be the common representative of all the applicants.

90.3       Effects of Acts by or in Relation to Agents and Common Representatives

(a)  Any act by or in relation to an agent shall have the effect of an act by or in relation to the applicant or applicants concerned.

(b)  If there are two or more agents representing the same applicant or applicants, any act by or in relation to any of those agents shall have the effect of an act by or in relation to the said applicant or applicants.

(c)  Subject to Rule 90bis.5(a), second sentence, any act by or in relation to a common representative or his agent shall have the effect of an act by or in relation to all the applicants.

90.4       Manner of Appointment of Agent or Common Representative

(a)  The appointment of an agent shall be effected by the applicant signing the request, the demand or a separate power of attorney. Where there are two or more applicants, the appointment of a common agent or common representative shall be effected by each applicant signing, at his choice, the request, the demand or a separate power of attorney.

(b)  Subject to Rule 90.5, a separate power of attorney shall be submitted to either the receiving Office or the International Bureau, provided that, where a power of attorney appoints an agent under Rule 90.1(b), (b-bis),  (c) or (d)(ii), it shall be submitted to the International Searching Authority, the Authority specified for supplementary search or the International Preliminary Examining Authority, as the case may be.

(c)  If the separate power of attorney is not signed, or if the required separate power of attorney is missing, or if the indication of the name or address of the appointed person does not comply with Rule 4.4, the power of attorney shall be considered non-existent unless the defect is corrected.

(d)  Subject to paragraph (e), any receiving Office, any International Searching Authority, any Authority competent to carry out supplementary searches, any International Preliminary Examining Authority and the International Bureau may waive the requirement under paragraph (b) that a separate power of attorney be submitted to it, in which case paragraph (c) shall not apply.

(e)  Where the agent or the common representative submits any notice of withdrawal referred to in Rules 90bis.1 to 90bis.4, the requirement under paragraph (b) for a separate power of attorney shall not be waived under paragraph (d).

90.5       General Power of Attorney

(a)  Appointment of an agent in relation to a particular international application may be effected by referring in the request, the demand or a separate notice to an existing separate power of attorney appointing that agent to represent the applicant in relation to any international application which may be filed by that applicant (i.e., a "general power of attorney"), provided that:

(i)  the general power of attorney has been deposited in accordance with paragraph (b), and

(ii)  a copy of it is attached to the request, the demand or the separate notice, as the case may be; that copy need not be signed.

(b)  The general power of attorney shall be deposited with the receiving Office, provided that, where it appoints an agent under Rule 90.1(b)(b-bis)(c) or (d)(ii), it shall be deposited with the International Searching Authority, the Authority specified for supplementary search or the International Preliminary Examining Authority, as the case may be.

(c)  Any receiving Office, any International Searching Authority, any Authority competent to carry out supplementary searches and any International Preliminary Examining Authority may waive the requirement under paragraph (a)(ii) that a copy of the general power of attorney is attached to the request, the demand or the separate notice, as the case may be.

(d)  Notwithstanding paragraph (c), where the agent submits any notice of withdrawal referred to in Rules 90bis.1 to 90bis.4 to the receiving Office, the International Searching Authority, the Authority specified for supplementary search or the International Preliminary Examining Authority, as the case may be, a copy of the general power of attorney shall be submitted to that Office or Authority.

90.6       Revocation and Renunciation

(a)  Any appointment of an agent or common representative may be revoked by the persons who made the appointment or by their successors in title, in which case any appointment of a sub-agent under Rule 90.1(d) by that agent shall also be considered as revoked. Any appointment of a sub-agent under Rule 90.1(d) may also be revoked by the applicant concerned.

(b)  The appointment of an agent under Rule 90.1(a) shall, unless otherwise indicated, have the effect of revoking any earlier appointment of an agent made under that Rule.

(c)  The appointment of a common representative shall, unless otherwise indicated, have the effect of revoking any earlier appointment of a common representative.

(d)  An agent or a common representative may renounce his appointment by a notification signed by him.

(e)  Rule 90.4(b) and (c) shall apply, mutatis mutandis, to a document containing a revocation or renunciation under this Rule.

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