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Publication date

European patent applications are generally published 18 months after the date of filing or earliest priority date. Prior to publication the application is kept confidential by the patent office.The publication date is the date on which a patent application is first published. It is the date on which the document is made available to the public, thereby making it part of the state of the art. New EP applications are published once a week (usually on Wednesday, at 14.00 hrs CET).

In the Publication date field the default operator is OR.


You can use any of the following formats:


  • yyyymmdd (four digits for the year, two digits for the month and two digits for the day)

  • yyyymm

  • yyyy

  • dd/mm/yyyy

  • mm/yyyy

  • yyyy-mm-dd

  • dd.mm.yyyy

  • mm.yyyy


Example: If you enter 19961023, you will find applications published on 23 October 1996.

If you enter 199610, you will find applications published in October 1996.

If you enter 1996, you will find applications published in 1996.