PCT Receiving Office Guidelines

Chapter III: National Security Clearance

32. The receiving Office, where required by the national law, reviews the international application for national security matters (Rule 22.1(a)). Subject to the prescriptions of the national law, international processing may continue. National security clearance should, subject to paragraph 33, be given not later than at the time when the transmittal of the record copy is due under Rule 22.1(a), that is, early enough for the record copy to reach the International Bureau before the expiration of the 13th month from the priority date.

33. If clearance is refused or has, by the end of the 13th month from the priority date, not been obtained and is not expected to be obtained, the receiving Office notifies (Form PCT/RO/147) the applicant and the International Bureau that the record copy and the search copy will not be transmitted and that the international application will not be treated as such. If national security clearance is expected to be obtained soon, the receiving Office may postpone its decision to no longer treat the international application as such but must make the said decision and send the invitation before the expiration of 17 months from the priority date if no clearance has been received by that time (Section 330 and paragraphs 285 to 287).

34. For refund of fees where any prescriptions concerning national security prevent transmittal of the record copy and search copy, see Rules 15.4(iii) and 16.2(iii) and paragraphs 268 to 271