New Fee Regime of the EPO

EPO has recently announced new fees and fee reductions which will be applied as of 01.04.2024.  


By decision of the Administrative Council of the European Patent Organisation dated 14 December 2023 (CA/ D 16/23), the EPO introduced a new fee scheme and new rules pertaining to fee reductions for certain applicants. New changes can be summarized as follows:

- New Rules 7a and 7b EPC: General conditions for entitlement of reductions in particular fees

- The new concept of “micro-enterprise” is introduced with the new rules. 


Increase in Renewal Fees


A notable increase is observed in 3rd-4th-5th year renewal fees. The increase in other renewal fees remain minimal as showed hereinbelow:

3rd Year 530.00690.00
4th Year 660.00845.00
5th Year 925.001,000.00
6th Year 1,180.001,155.00
7th Year 1,305.001,310.00
8th Year 1,440.001,465.00
9th Year 1,570.001,620.00
10th and each subsequent year  1,775.001,775.00


Language Related Fee Reductions

⇒ For Applicants Having Residence or Principle Place of Business in an EPC Contracting State and Having an Official Langauge Other Than EN, DE, FR


New Rule 7a(1) and 7a(2) regulates fee reductions mainly for European applicants who file a European application or a PCT regional phase entry before the EPO.

30% reduction is available for:

* microenterprises;

* small and medium-sized enterprises;

* natural persons;

* non-profit organisations, universities or public research organisations.


This reduction shall be available:

⇒ only in filing fee and examination fee

⇒ irrespective of number of patent applications filed by the applicant.


Fee Reductions for Micro-Entities

⇒ For All Small Entities Who Has Filed <5 Applications Within a Period of 5 Years Preceding the Filing Date or Regional Phase Entry  


New Rule 7a(3) and 7a(4) regulate fee reductions for all applicants specified below irrespective of residence and nationality. 

30% reduction is available for:

* microenterprises,

* natural persons,

* non-profit organisation, university or public research organisations.

(SMEs are excluded!)


Definition of "microenterprise": An enterprise which employs fewer than 10 persons and whose annual turnover and/or annual balance sheet total does not exceed EUR 2 million (European Commission Recommendation 2003/361/EC of 6 May 2003).


This reduction shall be available in:

⇒ Fling fee

⇒ Search fee

⇒ Examination fee

⇒ Designation fee

⇒ Fee for grant

⇒ Renewal fees


Keynotes and Conclusion


New Rule 7a - EPC brings additional fee reductions for microenterprises, natural persons, non-profit organisations, universities and public research organisations provided that such applicant has filed <5 applications within 5 years preceding filing date of the application.

The EPO first time introduces fee reductions specific for micro-entities of non-European applicants.

If the applicant is entitled to a fee reduction under both of the Rules 7a(1) and 7a(3) EPC, the total fee reduction would be as high as 51%.

New Rule 7b - EPC as adopted by the AD prescribes that a declaration shall be necessary showing the applicant's status within the meaning of Rule 7a(1) and/or 7a(3) EPC. This declaration can be accomplished either by ticking the relevant box in the request for grant (Form 1001) or separately by using Form 1011. The EPO may request proof from the applicant of whether it qualifies as one of the entities specified in Rule 7a EPC.


01 April 2024