PCT Receiving Office Guidelines

Chapter VI: Article 14 Check and Other Formal Requirements


72. Article 14(1)(a) sets out a number of formal defects for which the receiving Office checks the international application (signature, indications concerning the applicant, title, abstract and physical requirements). Article 14(1)(b) provides that if the receiving Office finds any of those defects, it invites (Form PCT/RO/106) the applicant to correct them within the prescribed time limit, failing which the receiving Office declares the international application withdrawn. The relevant provisions relating to checking by, and correcting before, the receiving Office of the above-mentioned elements of the international application, including time limit for correction, are contained in Rule 26.

73. Some of the requirements referred to in Article 14(1)(a) are set out in Rule 4, which provides for certain indications to be made and, at the applicant’s option, for certain declarations to be included, in the request. Rule 4 contains further requirements which are not covered by Article 14(1)(a). Regarding those indications and declarations which are not covered by Article 14(1)(a – for example, indications concerning the inventor (Rule 4.6), indications concerning an earlier search (Rule 4.11) or declarations relating to national requirements (Rule 4.17) – Article 14(1)(b) and Rule 26 do not apply, that is, compliance with those requirements cannot be enforced and processing of the international application may continue during the international phase even if those requirements are not complied with.

74. For details concerning the invitation procedure under Rule 26 and correction of other defects, including ex officio corrections, see paragraphs 153 to 165