The EUIPO has recently announced that, with effect from 12 September, it will become an accessing office under the WIPO Digital Access Service (DAS). This follows the news in July that the EUIPO would begin depositing certified copies of design applications with the WIPO DAS.
Applicants will therefore no longer need to submit a certified copy of a priority application where this is available through WIPO DAS (as is the case for US, Chinese, Japanese filings, among others) – only the filing number, date, country and WIPO DAS access code will be needed.
Interestingly, the updated guidelines on the Examination of Applications for Registered Community Designs indicate that the WIPO DAS access code must be provided at the time of filing – if it is not, then a certified copy of the priority document must be submitted in the normal manner.
The EUIPO already accepted photocopies of priority documents (and will continue to do so for priority documents which are not available through WIPO DAS), but this will further reduce the administrational burden and costs associated with instructing priority-claiming EU design applications and thus will be a welcome change for Applicants.