1.1. Filing of Applications

Applications for grant of patents can be lodged at the Industrial Property Office of any Contracting State, referred to as the Receiving Office or directly with ARIPO. An applicant need not be represented by a patent attorney, when lodging an application. However, an applicant whose ordinary residence or principal place of business is outside the Contracting State in which lodging is done, must be so represented. Filing can be by personal delivery or by registered mail.

1.2. Request for Grant

The request must be made on ARIPO Form No. 3 obtainable from any Contracting State. Applications lodged without Form No. 3 could be accepted provided there is an indication that the request is made for grant of a patent under the protocol with at least one Designated State. However, Form No. 3 will have to be submitted as soon as possible, thereafter. (Annex I) [R 5(5); I 16]

1.3. Numbering of the Application

The ARIPO application on receipt is accorded the application number, the date of receipt and marked with a Receiving Office Official Stamp. The application number consists of a two letter Country Code of the Receiving Office, a forward slash, the letter AP, a slant, the letter P, a slant, the digit year in which the application is lodged, a slant and the number allotted internally by the Receiving Office. For example in case of Zimbabwe being the Receiving Office the numbering would be