What does "Ep: pct application non-entry in european phase" on google patents mean? The PCT patent application in question is from 2012 and the last status update is, that it has been published. The latest legal status update is, "non entry in European phase". The corresponding US application was granted and is active. Does this mean that the Patent counts as withdrawn in Europe and is therefore not protected?

  • Is there a reason you haven't listed the specific application number?
    – Eric S
    Sep 17, 2020 at 15:23
  • I forgot! added it now @EricS
    – Tom W
    Sep 17, 2020 at 16:16
  • Editing the number out of the question doesn't really hide it very deeply.
    – George White
    Sep 19, 2020 at 21:06

1 Answer 1


A PCT application is an application for a patent in 150+ jurisdictions. Theoretically you can chose which of those places your application covers at the time you file. That is called a designation. In actually, all member countries are designated by default.

However those applications end 30 or 31 months after the earliest claimed priority date if they are not specifically extended into a national stage (or regional stage). Entering the national stage requires formality and payments. The EPO notes when an application designates the EPO and it notes when the deadline to extend into the regional stage expires at the 31 month point. That is what "Ep: pct application non-entry in european phase" means.

As a question in general, this note would not preclude coverage somewhere in Europe. It might have entered a national stage directly in one or more places. There might be another application with overlapping claims that was taken further.

In the specific case of the named patent the WIPO site shows no national or regional stages. The international preliminarily report finds none of the claims searched to have an inventive step. The Global Dossier (both reachable from the google patents site linked to in the question) tries to show the whole family of related applications. It shows two granted in the U.S. (US 10358461 and US 9550805)

In terms of freedom to operate, there may way be other patents in Europe or elsewhere that cover the same or overlapping material.

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  • Can you clarify what this means about the future status of the application? Is it a sign the application is dead or delayed?
    – Eric S
    Sep 17, 2020 at 18:41
  • edited answer to address comments
    – George White
    Sep 17, 2020 at 21:48

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