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Fee-related support measures for small entities

16 / 2 / 2024

Starting from April 1, 2024, there will be changes to the fees for European patent applications.

These changes will introduce a new scheme specifically designed to reduce fees for micro-entities.

The aim of this new scheme is to assist smaller and less experienced European entities in accessing the European patent system more easily, thereby supporting their growth and development.

These fee reductions complement the existing support measures available to small and medium-sized entities (SMEs), particularly in terms of language-related fee reductions.


Small entities, which include microenterprises, SMEs, natural persons, non-profit organizations, universities, and public research organizations residing or primarily located in an EPC contracting state, can request a reduction in fees based on the language used in their European patent application or examination request, provided it is not English, French, or German.

In contrast, the new fee reduction scheme applies solely to micro-entities, regardless of their nationality or domicile.

Both the language-related and micro-entity-related support schemes offer a 30% reduction in the relevant fees.

The language-related fee reduction for small entities encompasses the filing fee, including any additional fees associated with it, as well as the examination fee.

The micro-entity fee reduction applies to:

The filing fee, including any additional fees associated with it;

The fee for a European search, or a supplementary European search in the case of a Euro-PCT application searched by an International Searching Authority (ISA) other than the EPO;

The examination fee, along with any previously paid international search fee if the EPO acted as the ISA;

The designation fee;

The fee for grant;

The renewal fees for the European patent application.

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