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Enquiry units and search rooms

Customer care and services

Our customer care and services is the first point of contact for any question you wish to ask the DPMA.

  • You wish to apply for a patent, a utility model, a trade mark or a design.
  • You have general questions about IP applications, the procedures and the application requirements or about fees.
  • You want to gain information about the legal status (procedural status) of your IP applications (register information).
  • You need help to find your way around our extensive website.
  • You have suggestions for improvement or complaints.

At our three locations in Munich, Jena and Berlin (Technical Information Centre [TIZ]), the staff of several teams and of two information levels of the customer care and services will be happy to assist you:

  • central telephone number +49 89 2195-1000

(Monday through Thursday from 8:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m. and Friday from 8:00 a.m. to 2:00 p.m.)

Customer care and services is not authorised to give legal advice. Legal advice can only be provided by patent attorneys and lawyers.

Free consultations for first-time inventors

In cooperation with patent attorneys, free consultations for first-time inventors are provided in many towns all over Germany. In Munich and Berlin, these consultations take place at the premises of the German Patent and Trade Mark Office. Appointments should be made in advance:

Opening hours of customer care and services of the DPMA
Day  Location  Consultation hours and time  For appointmensts call: 
Wednesday  DPMA, Munich   9:30 a.m. to 12:30 p.m.
30 minutes for every appointment 
+49 89 2195-1000 
Thursday  DPMA, Munich   2:30 p.m. to 5:30 p.m.
30 minutes for every appointment 
+49 89 2195-1000 
Thursday  DPMA, TIZ Berlin   10:00 a.m. to 1:30 p.m.
15 minutes for every appointment 
+49 30 25992-230/-231 
first Tuesday of the month  DPMA, TIZ Berlin   10:00 a.m. to 12:00 noon
and 1:00 p.m. to 2:30 p.m.
30 minutes for every appointment 
+49 30 25992-230/-231 

Numerous regional patent information centres, many chambers of commerce and industry as well as chambers of skilled crafts offer consultations for first-time inventors by patent attorneys. The website of the German Chamber of Patent Attorneys provides an overview of advice services offered.

Search rooms of the German Patent and Trade Mark Office in Munich and Berlin

Using search options

The two search rooms of the DPMA in Munich and at the Technical Information Centre (TIZ) in Berlin also form part of our extended customer care and services. There, you can use various information options relating to industrial property rights. For example, you can perform prior art and novelty searches and monitor filing activities in specific fields of technology or of specific applicants. Furthermore, you can conduct searches on your own for individual patents, utility models, trade marks, and designs and identify the legal status of specific applications.

The search rooms have the character of reference libraries. All kinds of documents may be used there, but no documents may be taken out of the search rooms.

Assistance to users

Irrespective of whether you wish to search for specific IP rights or the state of the art, the staff of the search rooms will help you choosing the appropriate search tools and explain how to use these tools.

Collections of patents, trade marks, utility models and designs

Collections relating to patents, trade marks, utility models and designs

In the search rooms you have access to the following information sources:

  • national and foreign patent documents (access via DEPATIS and on paper collections)
  • national and foreign patent, trade mark and design gazettes/journals
  • EPIDOS-INPADOC indexes on patent documents from all over the world since 1968
  • legal (procedural) status information on German IP rights via DPMAregister
  • trade mark databases and dictionaries
  • design index, arranged by classes of goods (the index comprises the German register (index) cards from 1988 to 2003)
  • search tools (for example International Patent Classification)
  • collections of standards, such as DIN, ISO, ASTM
  • books and journals (focusing on technology, sciences and industrial property protection)

Many of the collections are available on CD and can be viewed in the search room.

DEPATIS patent information system

The electronic DEPATIS patent information system has almost completely replaced the paper search file of the patent examiners at the DPMA and the corresponding collections for the public. In the public search rooms, DEPATIS work stations are available to the public.

File inspection

You can inspect case files in the search rooms of the DPMA in Munich and Berlin or at the enquiry unit in Jena, but you first need a communication sent by the DPMA stating that the case files are available for file inspection. To receive such a communication you must send a letter requesting the inspection of a case file to the DPMA (see Sec. 31 Patent Act, Sec. 8(5) Utility Model Act, Sec. 62 Trade Mark Act, Sec. 22 Design Act). About two weeks after making the request you will usually receive the respective communication. For details about file inspection, particularly about online file inspection, please click here.

Munich search room

In the Munich search room six DEPATIS work stations and three Internet stations are available. If you wish to use a DEPATIS work station, we recommend that you make an appointment by calling the database hotline search support +49 89 2195-3435 or by sending an e-mail to datenbanken@dpma.de, specifying "Terminvereinbarung" in the subject line.

Opening hours of the search room in Munich
Day  Opening hours 
Monday through Thursday  8:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m.  
Friday  8:00 a.m. to 3:00 p.m. 

Berlin search room

In the Berlin search room several DEPATIS work stations and several CD-ROM work stations are available to you for searches for national and foreign patents, utility models, designs and trade marks.
Particularly worth mentioning are the collections of patent specifications from Eastern Europe and the USSR/Russia (since 1924). These documents are usually not included in the DEPATIS system. Furthermore, many information tools for searches for historical patents are provided at TIZ Berlin.
If you wish to use a DEPATIS work station, we recommend that you make an appointment by calling
+49 30 25992-230 or +49 30 25992-231.

Opening hours of the search room in Berlin
Day  Opening hours  
Monday through Wednesday   7:30 a.m. to 3:30 p.m.  
Thursday  7:30 a.m. to 7:00 p.m.  
Friday  7:30 a.m. to 2:00 p.m. 

General terms of use of our search rooms

© 2016 Deutsches Patent- und Markenamt | Last updated 18/09/17