If I have two PCT applications that are overlapping, is it possible to merge them into one in the EU? I think in US I can use a continuation patent but what about the EU? I was told according to Rule No. 44 of the Implementing Regulations, in relation to Article 82 of the EPC, I can claim unity of invention in a European patent application, with respect to one or more other previous applications, regardless if they are granted or not.

1 Answer 1


Applications cannot be merged. You must file an application that discloses the matter of both applications, and claim priority from the two applications should you wish the effective dates of each matter to be the filing date of the respective PCT.

Unity of invention has nothing to do with the content of applications. Unity of invention relates to the content of the claims in an application, and more particularly whether the subject-matter claimed in the application relates to a same invention or to more than one invention.

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