Friday, 3 March 2017

No electronic devices in EQE hall

Last week, EQE 2017 candidates received the message below from the Examination Secreariat:

Dear candidate,

Owing to the experience of the last few years and in order to ensure a fair examination, you are kindly reminded of the following: 

Electronic devices are FORBIDDEN during the EQE

Mobile telephones as well as many other electronic devices are now an integral part of our daily lives. However, they cannot be part of the EQE and it is strictly prohibited to take electronic devices of any kind, be it mobile phones, cameras, digital watches, or clocks, even mechanical ones, into the examination hall (see Instructions to candidates concerning the conduct of the European qualifying examination, point 9(a), Supplementary publication OJ EPO 2/2017 p. 37). 

Candidates discovered in the examination hall with any telephones or other electronic devices (unless explicitly allowed by the Examination Secretariat) will be reported to the Examination Board. This might lead to the most serious consequences (see Rules 19 and 20 IPREE). 

It will nevertheless be possible to hand in electronic devices before the start of the examination. For this purpose, please bring along an A4 envelope labelled with your first name, surname and date of birth. No responsibility can however be assumed for any damages or loss. 

The Examination Secretariat is confident that you will respect the rules. We wish you every success for the coming European qualifying examination. 

Yours sincerely, 

Examination Secretariat

Thursday, 23 February 2017

EQE Regulations in OJ 2017, Suppl 2

The Regulation on the European qualifying examination for professional representatives (REE, IPREE, Instructions to the candidates, additional decisions) has been published in Official Journal Supplementary publication 2, 2017,

Wednesday, 21 December 2016

Tutor's report EQE 2016 available in epi Information 4/2016

The Tutors' report on the EQE 2016 papers (pdf), by L. Ferreira (PT), A. Hards (DE), M. Mackett (BE), H. Marsman (NL), S. van Rijnswou (NL), and R. van Woudenberg (NL, editor), has been published in epi Information 4/2016. 

Each year in October, the European Patent Academy and the epi arrange a meeting between EQE tutors and the Examination Committees. The goals are to discuss last year's papers, to improve future EQE's by openly exchanging ideas and to help tutors prepare candidates for next year's exam.

The Examination Board has kindly given the tutors permission to publish their own report of the important points so that candidates can more easily find this information. In addition, the comments can greatly assist when reading and interpreting the official EQE Compendium.

This year's meeting was held in Munich on October 21. The participant list showed 84 registered tutors, 20 registered Committee and Board members, and 8 further registered EPO and epi members (Academy, EQE secretariat, epi).

This Tutors' Report appears each year in the end of year edition of epi Information. It contains the following sections:
1. Overview of the passing rates in 20162. General remarks
3. A - E/M4. B - E/M
5. A - CH6. B - CH
7. C8. D
9. Pre-Exam10. The combined AB Papers (EQE 2017)
The Report can be read online via this link, epi Information 4/2016 is also available as pdf.

Friday, 18 November 2016

Half an hour more for the main exam papers as of 2017

The Supervisory Board decided to grant an additional thirty minutes per main exam paper to the durations stipulated in Rules 23(1), 24(1), 25(1) and 26(1) of the Implementingprovisions to the Regulation onthe European qualifying examination, starting from EQE 2017.
The time available for the main exam papers thus becomes:
A: 4 hours instead of 3.5;
B: 3.5 hours instead of 3;
C: 5.5 hours instead of 5;
D: 5.5 hours instead of 5.

The time for the Pre-Exam remains unchanged at 4 hours.

The time schedule for EQE 2017 (7 March - 9 March 2017) has been updated accordingly - the new schedule can be found here.
Note that the starting time for paper A has been moved to half an hour earlier: 9:00 instead of 9:30 Munich/ The Hague time!

The dates and timeschedule for EQE 2018 have also been published on the EQE website: Monday 26 February 2018 - Thursday 1 March 2018.

NB: the home page of the EQE webpages is not so easy to find when browing the EPO website: it is only accessible from the pull-down menu, but not from links on the webpages. It can be accessed directly via 

Tuesday, 12 July 2016

Is there yet a trend in the EQE results after the introduction of the pre-exam?

Joeri Beetz kindly provided the following overview:
We should be careful in basing conclusions on a small amount of data but arguably the full exam pass rate has not gone down after the pre-exam was introduced. In a few years time we may conclude that the pass rate has gone up by maybe 10%.  We'll see.

EQE2016: The results are out!

The results of the main exam papers of EQE 2016 are out! The scores can be found here: you can find your results by searching for your EQE Registration number (EQEReg) in the list.
According to the document, the result letters will be dispatched as of 25 July 2016 onwards.

The Examiner's reports are also available on the EPO EQE website: Ach, Bch, Aem, Bem, C and D.

A first analysis gives the following statistics:

# sitters 847 787 1109 958
no show 9 17 24 42
pass 483 518 455 423
comp fail 77 66 93 108
pass + cf 560 584 548 531
pass 57% 66% 41% 44%
comp fail 9% 8% 8% 11%
pass + cf 66% 74% 49% 55%
average              54             55             45             47
max 95 86 87 86

If you post your comments using the "Anonymous" option, please put your name or a nick name below your message - that makes discussing easier and makes it more personal.

Friday, 22 April 2016

Requirement to register start of professional activities

For sitting the main exam, it is required that a candidate:

(a) satisfies the Secretariat that at the date of the examination (or rather, 1 March) the candidate has:
      (i) completed a full-time training period of at least three years in one of the contracting states to the European Patent Convention (hereinafter "the EPC") under the supervision of one or more persons European patent attorneys (for exact formulation, see Art.11(2)(a)(i) REE), or
      (ii) worked full-time for a period of at least three years in the employment of a natural or legal person in an EPC contracting state and have represented their employer before the EPO in accordance with Article 133(3) EPC (Art.11(2)(a)(ii) REE)), or
(b) performed full-time the duties of an examiner at the EPO for at least four years (Art.11(2)(b) REE).
For the pre-exam,  these periods are reduced by one year. 
On 1 April 2016, a revised version of Rule 28 IPREE entered into force, which requires candidates intending to enrol for the European qualifying examination for the first time to register once they have commenced their professional activities or employment.
The registration has to be done within 2 month after having commenced professional activities or employment. However, a transitional provision applies that the registration can be performed at any time during a transitional period that runs at least until 1 April 2017. 
Candidates enrolling for the EQE for the first time in 2017 do not need prior registration
Candidates enrolling for the EQE for the first time in 2018 or later are advised to register before the end of the transitional period, as otherwise only 2 months of the training period before registration will be taken into account.
The full text of the decision is given below:
Decision of the Supervisory Board 

The Supervisory Board,

Having regard to the Regulation on the European qualifying examination for professional representatives (REE) which entered into force on 1 January 2009 (Supplementary publication 2, OJ EPO 2014), in particular Article 3, paragraph 7, thereof, has decided as follows:

Article 1
Rule 28 of the Implementing provision to the Regulation on the European qualifying examination for professional representatives shall be replaced by the following text:

(1) In accordance with Article 11(1) REE, candidates intending to enrol for the European qualifying examination for the first time shall register once they have commenced their professional activities or employment as defined in Article 11(2) REE.

(2) Notwithstanding the provisions of Rule 7 and subject to paragraph 4, the fee for registration for candidates already registered with the Institute as an “epi student” shall amount to 50% of the basic fee.

(3) For the purposes of Article 11(2) REE, only such periods of professional activity shall be taken into account as have been accumulated after registration pursuant to paragraph 1 above. The maximum period of previous professional activity as defined in Article 11(2) REE which can be taken into account is limited to two months on condition that such period occurred immediately before registration. 

(4) During a transitional period of at least one year from the entry into force of this rule, the registration can be requested at any time. Candidates may request any previous period of professional activity as defined in Article 11(2) REE to be taken into account without the limitation specified under paragraph 3. Registration is free of charge during the transitional period. The transitional period may be extended by decision of the Supervisory Board. For candidates enrolling for the 2017 European qualifying examination, no prior registration is necessary.

    Article 2 
    This decision shall enter into force on 1 April 2016.

    Done at Munich, 23 March 2016
    For the Supervisory Board
    The Chairman
    Chris Mercer