We are aware that many people have been affected by the allocation of venue for the 2017 EQEs which were communicated by the EPO yesterday. In particular, we are aware of a large number of people who have been moved from a preference of UK (Walsall) to Munich.
We are currently in the process of preparing an Open Letter from the Informals Committee expressing our concerns as regard the current situation, as well as the general organisation of the UK Venue for the EQEs by CIPA on behalf of the UKIPO. If you have any particular concerns or issues which you think we should address, please let us know at FXR@dyoung.com or LEJ@dyoung.com.
Furthermore, we will also be glad to provide any assistance or guidance as regard logistical arrangements if you have been moved to a different location for your EQEs.
Informals Education Coordinators
You will have seen that in 2017, the EQE will be held in the Conference Centre at Walsall Football Club. There have been questions as to how this will compare to Bristol. I have investigated this venue personally and can assure you that it will be a very suitable venue. The Conference Centre is a large single room on the first floor of one of the stands. It is used as a theatre, conference centre and wedding venue. It is fully insulated from the outside environment, has working heating and air conditioning and it is well lit. It has a carpeted floor and a PA system so that announcements can be easily heard. There will be sufficient room for candidates to bring as much reference material as they want.
The venue is readily accessible by road, rail and air. It is just 5 minutes from Junction 9 on the M6 and there is more than adequate free parking at the venue. The venue is 5 minutes’ walk from Bescot Railway Station (over a footbridge). The station is served from Birmingham New Street and it is easy to get to Birmingham New Street from Birmingham International Airport.
There is a very nice (not luxury) Park Inn Hotel on the same site as the Conference Centre. CIPA has already arranged that 50 rooms are set aside for EQE candidates to book at the preferential rate of £75 bed and breakfast when you quote code: WFCCON. There are only 50 rooms available on Sunday 5th March, 2017 but up to 75 rooms on other nights. As CIPA has not made a block booking, you must book the accommodation yourself if you wish to use this hotel.
There are also other reasonable hotels less than 5 miles from the venue.
If you have any further questions, please send an email to HonSec@cipa.org.uk.
I’m sure everyone who needs to has applied for the EQEs already, but just in case, this is a reminder that the deadline is tomorrow, 8 September 2016 (by which time payment also has to have been received): https://www.eqe.org/EQEASy/candidate/auth/login
The results for the EQE main exam 2016 are now available on the EQE website: http://www.epo.org/learning-events/eqe/statistics.html (you’ll need you EQEReg number).
Well done to candidates who passed and best of luck to anyone who needs to resit something next year. Enrolment for the main exam 2017 opens this Thursday 14 July 2016: http://www.epo.org/learning-events/eqe/admission/2017.html
The Informals Committee
As reported in our previous post, enrolment for the 2017 EQE pre-examination closes on 2 June 2016. If you intend to sit the 2017 pre-exam and you have not already enrolled, go to https://www.epo.org/learning-events/eqe/admission/2017.html and follow the instructions to complete your enrolment. The EPO recommends that you pay your enrolment and exam fees by card rather than bank transfer, so be sure to have a card at the ready when you start the enrolment procedure.
Registration for the 2016 PEB exams is now open. The registration form is available for download from the CIPA website:
The deadline for registering for the UK exams is 29 July 2016. Registering sooner rather than later is advisable, to allow time for payment to be made.
We posted on 5 April and 11 April about revised Rule 28 IPREE and the accompanying new registration procedure for the EQE. epi has today published a helpful article explaining about the rule change and the new registration procedure.
As noted in the article and our previous post, registration is not necessary for those who will be eligible to sit the 2017 pre-examination. Those candidates should enrol as normal by the deadline of 2 June 2016.
Registration will be necessary for those who will only be eligible to sit the pre-examination for the first time in 2018. During the transitional period (expected to expire no earlier than 31 March 2017), registration will be free. Thereafter, candidates will have to pay a registration fee (reduced for candidates who are epi student members at the time of registering for the EQE). During the transitional period, candidates can also apply to have any length of prior training recognised for the purposes of Article 11(2) REE.
For more details, please see the full epi article and our previous posts (here and here).
On 5 April we reported that a revised Rule 28 IPREE had come into force. The new rule imposes a requirement on trainees to register for the EQE within 2 months of commencing “their professional activities or employment as defined in Article 11(2) REE”.
Since that post, more information has come to light about the registration procedure, details of which are set out below. We also understand that the EPO is in the process of updating its website to explain the registration procedure.
Thanks to the kind individuals who got in touch with us to provide this information.
Anyone who has recently joined the patent profession and, in particular, anyone eligible to sit the pre-exam in 2018 for the first time should:
- Go to https://www.epo.org/learning-events/eqe.html
- Click on the “Admission and enrolment” tab, and navigate to the “2017 enrolment” page: https://www.epo.org/learning-events/eqe/admission/2017.html
- Click on the web portal: https://www.eqe.org/EQEASy/candidate/auth/login. Click on “Create Account” at the bottom of the page.
- Complete the forms to create a new user account.
- Wait for an email from the EPO confirming creation of a new account.
- Click on the link in the email, and log in using the email address and password used at step 4.
- Use the web portal to register for the EQE under Rule 28 IPREE. Click on the “Registration to the EQE according to Rule 28 IPREE” button and not on the “Pre-examination 2017 registration and enrolment” button:
- Complete the required forms and provide copies of e.g. a certified identity document, a certified degree certificate, etc. and pay any registration fees.
We reported previously (see e.g. here and here) that, from 2017, EQE papers A and B would come in one generic flavour suitable for all candidates, rather than in the previous “Chemistry” and “Electricity/Mechanics” flavours.
To help candidates prepare for the new “combined” exam, the EPO has made available mock papers A and B. The mock papers can be downloaded from the EPO’s website here and here.
A revised Rule 28 IPREE came into force on 1 April 2016. Under the new rule, trainees must register for the EQE within 2 months of joining the profession if they want their entire periods of training to count towards the “periods of professional activity” required before they are eligible to sit the EQE papers. (More precisely, they must register within 2 months of commencing “their professional activities or employment as defined in Article 11(2) REE”; for many people these periods will be equivalent.)
There is a transitional period of “at least one year” from 1 April 2016 during which candidates may register for the EQE for free. It also appears that, at least during the transitional period, candidates may request to have previous periods of professional activity that are longer than 2 months taken into account.
The revised Rule 28 explicitly states that no prior registration is necessary for the 2017 EQE. However, it would seem that current trainees who will only be eligible to sit an EQE paper for the first time in 2018 should register by 31 March 2017 if they want to make sure their previous activity is counted (and they want to register at no cost).
The second paragraph of the revised rule suggests that, once the transitional period has expired, epi student members will be entitled to pay a lower registration fee than trainees who are not epi student members.
The Informals Committee is unsure what constitutes “registration” for the purposes of the new Rule 28 IPREE. According to Article 11 REE, “Candidates shall be registered for the examination on request”. However, it is not clear whether there will be a new registration form or other procedure to effect registration. The Informals Committee hopes that the EPO will issue further information about this in due course and encourages trainees to check the EQE page over the coming months.
The Informals Committee urges trainees and trainers alike to review the revised Rule 28 and to make sure that they consider the impact of the revised rule on people who are already in the profession and anyone who joins it in the future. If it is not already standard practice in your office, it might also be worth making epi registration part of your “new starter checklist” or training log.
Congratulations to anyone who passed the EQE 2016 pre-examination! For an analysis of this year’s results, have a look at the 17 March DeltaPatents Pre-Exam Blog post.
The dates of the 2017 EQE papers and the deadlines for enrolling were published in the March edition of the EPO’s Official Journal:
“1.1 Date of the pre-examination and deadline
The pre-examination will be held on 6 March 2017.
The web portal will be available from 1 April 2016 until 2 June 2016. After 2 June 2016 the web portal will be closed and it will not be possible to apply for enrolment for the pre-examination 2017.
1.2 Date of the main examination and deadline
The main examination will be held from 7 to 9 March 2017.
The web portal will be available from 14 July 2016 until 8 September 2016. After 8 September 2016 the web portal will be closed and it will not be possible to apply for enrolment for the main examination 2017.”
Be sure to put these dates in your diary and to enrol early in the enrolment period so that you have time to resolve any problems with your application (such as fee payments, which can only be made by credit card or bank transfer).