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    OHIM announces fast-tracking of certain Community design applications

    OHIM has begun to operate a fast-track service for Community design applications that fit certain criteria. These are: first, that the application is submitted in good quality to avoid deterioration of the design views (e-filing has been identified by OHIM as the preferred method; posted applications are acceptable but not faxed ones); second, that the application fees are paid via an OHIM current account to facilitate instant verification of the payment by OHIM; and third, that the application either includes no priority claim or is accompanied by the relevant priority documents. Examiners have been instructed to flag on receipt those applications that fit the criteria, and to deal with them first. OHIM says that since this new system was introduced at the end of September 2008, almost a third of applications have been registered and published within ten days. It is likely that the fast-track procedure will increase in efficiency when OHIM introduces its new e-filing system for Community design in 2009 because, among other things, the new system will include an automatic screening procedure.

    PLC Magazine: 31.10.08