Translation Requirements for Validation of European Patents 

A patent that has been granted by the European Patent Office may subsequently be made effective in any of the countries for which a designation, extension or validation fee has been paid.  This process is commonly known as “validation” of the European patent.  Some countries impose translation requirements as part of the validation procedure.  In general, any required translations must be submitted within three months of the grant date of the patent.

The translation requirements imposed vary significantly between the different countries.  The majority of European patents are in English, and for such patents, the following requirements apply:

(a)  Belgium, France, Germany, Ireland, Luxembourg, Malta, Monaco, Morocco, Switzerland and the United Kingdom have no post-grant translation requirements.

(b)  Albania, Bosnia & Herzegovina, Croatia, Denmark, Finland, Hungary, Iceland, Latvia, Lithuania, Macedonia, Montenegro, the Netherlands, Norway, Sweden and Slovenia require translations of the claims of the patent (but not the entire specification) in the appointed language to be filed.

(c)  Austria, Bulgaria, Cyprus, the Czech Republic, Estonia, Greece, Italy, Moldova, Poland, Portugal, Romania, San Marino, Serbia, Slovakia, Spain and Turkey require a translation of the entire specification in the appointed language to be filed.  This includes a translation of the sequence listing, if one is present.

The attached annex sets out the requirements for each country, including the appointed language where relevant.  As is evident from the annex, in some countries it is possible to re-use a translation prepared for another country with the same appointed language.  For example, a Greek translation can be used in both Greece and Cyprus, an Italian translation can be used in both Italy and San Marino, a Croatian translation can be used in both Croatia and Bosnia and Herzegovina, a Serbian translation can be used in Serbia, Montenegro and Bosnia and Herzegovina, and a Romanian translation can be used in both Romania and Moldova.

If you have any questions about the European grant and validation procedure, or need advice or estimates for a European case that is about to be granted, get in touch with your usual J A Kemp contact or email James Egleton at jegleton@jakemp.com.

 

3 January 2017

 

Annex - translation requirements for European patents in English

Country code

Country

 

Translation requirement

 

AL

Albania

Claims only into Albanian

AT

Austria

Full text into German

BA

Bosnia & Herzegovina

Claims only into Bosnian, Croatian or Serbian

BE

Belgium

No translation needed

BG

Bulgaria

Full text into Bulgarian

CH/LI

Switzerland/Liechtenstein

No translation needed

CY

Cyprus

Full text into Greek

CZ

Czech Republic

Full text into Czech

DE

Germany

No translation needed

DK

Denmark

Claims only into Danish

EE

Estonia

Full text into Estonian

ES

Spain

Full text into Spanish

FI

Finland

Claims only into Finnish

FR

France

No translation needed

GB

United Kingdom

No translation needed

GR

Greece

Full text into Greek

HR

Croatia

Claims only into Croatian

HU

Hungary

Claims only into Hungarian

IE

Ireland

No translation needed

IS

Iceland

Claims only into Icelandic

IT

Italy

Full text into Italian

LT

Lithuania

Claims only into Lithuanian

LU

Luxembourg

No translation needed

LV

Latvia

Claims only into Latvian

MA

Morocco

No translation needed

MC

Monaco

No translation needed

MD

Moldova

Full text into Romanian

ME

Montenegro

Claims only into Montenegrin[i]

MK

Former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia

Claims only into Macedonian

MT

Malta

No translation needed

NL

Netherlands

Claims only into Dutch

NO

Norway

Claims only into Norwegian

PL

Poland

Full text into Polish

PT

Portugal

Full text into Portuguese

RO

Romania

Full text into Romanian

RS

Serbia

Full text into Serbian

SE

Sweden

Claims only into Swedish

SI

Slovenia

Claims only into Slovene

SK

Slovakia

Full text into Slovak

SM

San Marino

Full text into Italian

TR

Turkey

 Full text into Turkish



[i] Although Montenegrin and Serbian are officially different languages, there has not yet been any significant divergence since Montenegro gained independence from Serbia.  A Serbian translation of the claims can therefore be used in Montenegro (as well as in Serbia and Bosnia & Herzegovina).

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