Effective November 1, 2016, new European Patent Office (EPO) Examination Guidelines governing the transfer of European patent applications will take effect. Two changes should be noted:
- The assignment document must include the signatures of both parties (assignor and assignee).
- The assignment document must include the precise job title of each person who signs the document.
In the past, it was common for a patent holder to execute an assignment in favor of an assignee, without the assignee signing the document. Under the new Guidelines, the EPO will no longer accept an assignment document that uses the single signature format.
In the past, some assignment documents would list the signing party as something like authorized representative. This EPO will no longer accept this practice either.