December 2018 | No. 12/2018


New Contingency Upload Service and Postponement of Decommissioning of the Fax Service at the International Bureau

Further to the information that was published in PCT Newsletter No. 11/2018, in view of the future decommissioning of fax services at the International Bureau (IB), a new document upload service, referred to as the “contingency upload service”, is now available.  This new service allows the upload of PDF documents, including new international applications and/or post-filing documents, without having to sign in with a WIPO account.  Unlike fax services, it provides secure transmission of documents, though without any of the additional benefits and validations offered by the ePCT system.  It is recalled that using ePCT with additional strong authentication (digital certificate or one‑time password) allows you to upload documents not only to the IB, but also to any other participating Offices in their capacity as receiving Office, International Searching Authority or International Preliminary Examining Authority. 

Please note that this new upload service has been developed primarily as a contingency measure in the event that the applicant/agent needs to submit a document to the IB urgently, and the ePCT system is not available or the applicant/agent does not yet use ePCT.  A direct link to the contingency upload service will be available on the ePCT welcome page in the event of system unavailability.  However, applicants and agents are strongly encouraged to use ePCT in preference to the contingency upload service whenever possible.

The contingency upload service is available at:


Before uploading a document, you will need to provide an e‑mail address for validation, and to receive a link to access the service.  You will also receive an automated confirmation of receipt at that e‑mail address after upload.

A demonstration version of the contingency upload service is also available for testing purposes only at:


and you can use a sample international application number for testing purposes that is provided on the PCT eServices Help page at:


In order for applicants to have sufficient time to start using ePCT, or at least to familiarize themselves with the new contingency upload service, the IB has decided to postpone the decommissioning of the fax service until at least the end of June 2019 (it had previously been announced that the IB would continue to operate fax services at least until the end of February 2019).  The two modes of submitting documents will therefore be available in parallel until at least the end of June 2019. 

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