In accordance to the WIPO Patent Cooperation Treaty (PCT), the Intellectual Property Office of the Republic of Serbia and the Visegrad Patent Institute signed the Memorandum of Understanding concerning functioning of the Visegrad Patent Institute as the International Preliminary Examination and International Search Authority for international (PCT) applications submited by citizens of the Republic of Serbia or persons having residence or business headquarters in the Republic of Serbia. The Memorandum of Understanding enters into force on 1 September 2020.
The Visegrad Patent Institute is an international patent organization having its headquarters in Budapest, and established by national patent offices of the Czech Republic, Hungary, the Republic of Poland and the Slovak Republic. Visegrad Patent Institute started its operations after being appointed by the Assembly of the International Union of the Patent Cooperation Treaty (PCT) of the World Intellectual Property Organization (WIPO) as an International Search and International Preliminary Examination Authority.
By signing the Memorandum of Understanding with the Visegrad Patent Institute, applicants of international applications are given an opportunity to choose which of the International Authorities to authorize for drafting international preliminary examination reports and search reports for their applications. So far, according the current regulations, only the European Patent Office (EPO) was competent to act as an International (PCT) Authority for patent applications submitted by citizens of the Republic of Serbia or persons having residence or business headquarters in the Republic of Serbia.
International patent application should be submitted in English to the Intellectual Property Office of the Republic of Serbia or to the International Bureau of the World Intellectual Property Organization (WIPO). If an applicant during the formal examination period submits to the Visegrad Institute an earlier preliminary examination report, 40% of the tax for drafting preliminary examination report would be refunded. Therefore, if an international priority based on a national application is requested, and an applicant already received preliminary examination report from the Intellectual Property Office of the Republic of Serbia, tax refund may be requested.