Patent Cooperation Treaty Handbook
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Author: Chartered Institute of Patent Attorneys (C.I.P.A.); Philip Walters
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Format: Looseleaf
Status: Live on Westlaw UK

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This Handbook provides detailed coverage of the procedures for international applications under the Patent Cooperation Treaty, plus the general principle of national stages. It includes introductory background material on the PCT, putting it into context in the overall picture of patent practice and assessing the commercial value of the procedure.

The individual stages of the international applications, such as representation, filing the application, processing the application and the search are discussed in detail, with guidance on the best strategies to adopt. Other topics covered include documentation, fees and time limits.

  • Provides a full commentary to the PCT without any bias towards national laws
  • Reproduces the treaty together with related regulations, administrative instructions and forms plus other conventions
  • Offers a clear explanation of the jurisdiction, priorities and procedures of the World Intellectual Property Organisations in relation to the PCT
  • Updated by two releases a year
  • New material included in upcoming releases includes information about:
    • Changes to the PCT Regulations including important new provisions for the excuse of delay in meeting certain PCT time limits in certain circumstances;
    • Provisions for providing indications of availability of international applications for licensing purposes, including the new official PCT form which may be used for this purpose;
    • PCT-PPH (PCT-Patent Prosecution Highway) programs;
    • The ePCT online portal;
    • Recent practical advice from WIPO

Chartered Institute of Patent Attorneys (


The Chartered Institute of Patent Attorneys (CIPA) is the professional and examining body for patent attorneys (also known as patent agents) in the United Kingdom. The Institute was founded in 1882 and was incorporated by Royal Charter in 1891. It represents virtually all the 1800+ registered patent attorneys in the United Kingdom, whether they practise in industry or in private practice. Total membership is over 3300 and includes trainee patent attorneys and other professionals with an interest in intellectual property matters.


Through its regulatory arm, the Patent Regulation Board, which operates with the Trade Mark Regulation Board as the Intellectual Property Regulation Board (IPReg), the Institute maintains the statutory Register of Patent Attorneys. IPReg carries out the regulatory functions of setting and maintaining the standards of qualification for entry on the Register and has a Code of Conduct to ensure that registrants provide an appropriate level of service to their clients.

Despite the historic name of the Institute, patent attorneys have always been qualified to advise on trade marks, designs and copyright as well as patents (collectively known as intellectual property).


  • advises the UK Government and other international bodies on policy and practice matters;
  • is run by a Council of 26 members elected by the Fellows of the Institute;
  • provides training for its members both pre- and post-qualification;
  • organises patent clinics for members of the public;
  • provides informative publications for the general public.

Philip Walters is a Chartered Patent Attorney and European Patent Attorney based in Cambridge, UK.

Colin Jones.