PCT Receiving Office Guidelines

Chapter VIII: Missing Parts or Erroneously Filed Elements or Parts in the International Application

Invitation to Applicant

195. If the receiving Office finds that any part of the international application appears to be missing or any element or part of the international application appears to have been erroneously filed, it invites (Form PCT/RO/107) the applicant under Rule 20.5(a) or 20.5bis(a), as the case may be, either to complete or correct the purported international application by furnishing the missing part or the correct element or part, or, where the missing part or the correct element or part is completely contained in the earlier application the priority of which is claimed in the international application, to confirm, in accordance with Rule 20.6(a), that the missing part or the correct element or part is incorporated by reference under Rule 4.18. The option of incorporation by reference is not available if the receiving Office has notified the International Bureau of an incompatibility with its national law under Rule 20.8(a) or (a-bis). In the case of a missing part, such an Office either proceeds as described in Rule 20.8(a-ter) or promptly requests the International Bureau as receiving Office to agree, in accordance with the procedure outlined in paragraphs 278 to 281, to the transmittal of the international application under Section 333(b) and (c).  In the case of an erroneously filed element or part, such an Office transmits the international application to the International Bureau as receiving Office under Rule 19.4, unless the applicant does not agree with the transmittal or does not pay the required fee within the time limit, in which case the Office proceeds as described in Rule 20.8(a-ter) (Section 309(g)). A copy of the invitation (Form PCT/RO/107) is sent to the International Bureau and to the International Searching Authority.

196. Time Limit to Respond. The applicant may, within two months from the date of the invitation (Rule 20.7(a)), respond by either completing or correcting the international application according to Rule 20.5(a)(i) or 20.5bis(a)(i), or by confirming, under Rule 20.5(a)(ii) or 20.5bis(a)(ii), the incorporation by reference of the missing part or the correct element or part, as the case may be. Where the time limit for responding to the notification expires later than one year from the filing date of the earliest application whose priority is claimed, the receiving Office draws the applicant’s attention to that fact (Rule 20.5(a) or 20.5bis(a)).  Form PCT/RO/107 contains a check-box for that purpose.