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Patent Prosecution Highway (PPH)

Purpose of the Patent Prosecution Highway (PPH)

PPH written in capitals

The purpose of the Patent Prosecution Highway (PPH) is to speed up processing of patent applications through the exchange und mutual use of work results.

This scheme enhances the efficiency of the patent examining process while maintaining the quality of examination.

The DPMA offers a standardised request form for all PPH patent offices as of now:

For details, please also see the respective updated guidelines we listed under each country.

PPH User Seminar at the DPMA on 22 July 2014

On 22 July 2014, an international user seminar on the Patent Prosecution Highway (PPH) took place at the DPMA. DPMA President Cornelia Rudloff-Schäffer as well as representatives of the patent offices of Austria, China, Finland, Japan, the Republic of Korea, Singapore, the United Kingdom and the United States of America reported on current trends and issues concerning the PPH.

The presentations of all offices are available for download here:
pdf- Datei APO (Austria), pdf- Datei (1,46 MB) SIPO (China), pdf- Datei PRH (Finland), pdf- Datei (1,25 MB) JPO (Japan), pdf- Datei (1,41 MB) KIPO (Republic of Korea), pdf- Datei IPOS (Singapore), pdf- Datei UKIPO (United Kingdom), pdf- Datei USPTO (United States of America), pdf- Datei DPMA (Germany)

Current PPH pilot programmes of the DPMA

The DPMA currently runs PPH pilots with the following offices: Japan Patent Office (JPO), United States Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO), Korean Intellectual Property Office (KIPO), Canadian Intellectual Property Office (CIPO), State Intellectual Property Office of the People's Republic of China (SIPO), United Kingdom Intellectual Property Office (UK-IPO), Finnish Patent and Registration Office (PRH), Austrian Patent Office (APO)

Participation in the pilot programmes is subject to a request. The request form, the guidelines for participation in the respective pilot programmes, the press releases and information published by the partner offices can be downloaded here:

DPMA - IPOS (Singapore), since 1 October 2014

DPMA - APO (Austria), since 1 June 2014

DPMA - PRH (Finland), since 1 January 2014

DPMA - UK-IPO (United Kingdom), since 1 March 2012

DPMA - SIPO (China), since 23 January 2012

DPMA-CIPO (Canada), since 1 October 2010

DPMA - KIPO (Korea), since 1 July 2010

DPMA - USPTO (USA), since 27 March 2009

DPMA - JPO (Japan), since 25 March 2008

How the PPH works

In order to request accelerated examination at the DPMA under the PPH, it is required that the applicant has filed an application at one or more of our nine PPH partner offices and that one of the PPH partner offices of the DPMA has found at least one patent claim patentable. The decisive factor for the PPH request at the DPMA is the work result of the Office of Earlier Examination (earlier examination principle) which does not have to be the Office of First Filing. Therefore, there is no need for tactical considerations of which office works the fastest. In addition, the number of work results a PPH request may be based on increases. During the PPH procedure, the DPMA is not bound to the decision made by the other patent office.

About the background of the PPH pilots: If an applicant files patent applications for the same invention in many countries, the patent offices will conduct searches and examine the patent applications independently. It is the objective of the pilot programmes to explore to what extent the search / examination results can be mutually used. Applicants can now make use of an accelerated examination procedure via the standardised request form.

Further information
If you have any questions, you are welcome to send us an e-mail (PPH.Info@dpma.de).

© 2015 Deutsches Patent- und Markenamt | Last updated 29/05/15