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According to the European Patent Convention, the European Patent Office has the legal obligation to publish the patent applications it receives (A-documents) and the patents it grants (B-documents).

By decision of the President of the Office, the European Publication Server has been the sole legally authoritative publication medium for European A and B documents since 1 April 2005. All documents (A1, A2, A3 and B1, B2, B3 documents, as well as the corresponding A8, A9, B8 and B9 correction documents) are available free of charge at 2 p.m. on their day of publication, which is usually every Wednesday.

Locating documents in the European Publication Server is very easy - there are just a few “access keys”, such as publication number and IPC class. Apart from viewing documents on-screen, you can download them in PDF format or XML. There are no restrictions to the number of pages you can download from a given document at once.

If you would like further information on the European Publication Server or if you have suggestions for improving this service, please contact us at

© European Patent Office, last updated: 24.01.2018