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Date Published

An applicant may withdraw an application under sec 141 at any time before grant, except for the three week period prior to the due date on which a notice is to be published in the Official Journal that the application is OPI, or the three week period prior to the due date for acceptance to be advertised in the Official Journal. If the request is filed during the prescribed period, that notice is of no effect, and the applicant should be advised as follows:

"I refer to your request to withdraw this application, which was filed on xxxxx. I advise that the date of filing your request was within a period prescribed by regulation 13.1A(1), and accordingly is of no effect. If you wish the application to be withdrawn, you will need to file a new request after the prescribed period has expired."

A request for withdrawal must be in writing and signed by the applicant.  There is no approval process for a withdrawal and the withdrawal is effective on the date the request is received.  A notice of the withdrawal is published in the Official Journal.

While it is possible to withdraw a lapsed application, it is unusual to do so.  Rather, an application to withdraw a lapsed application may be an indication that the applicant has identified the wrong application (see Reversing Withdrawal of an Application).  Unless the request notes that the application is lapsed, and despite this they request withdrawal, the applicant should be asked to confirm that they wish to withdraw the application despite it being lapsed.  If confirmation is received, the withdrawal will be processed.

Note: Special considerations apply where the applicant wishes to withdraw an application that has been opposed under sec 59.  In particular, the consent of the Commissioner is required.

Effect of Withdrawal

The effect of a withdrawal is to stop any further processing of the application, however documents on the case file remain in the Office. Withdrawal of an application also means:

  • the application will not be OPI if it has not been advertised under sec 54;

  • the applicant of a withdrawn application may be entitled to at least a part refund of fees in an amount which will depend on the circumstances of the particular case;

  • the application cannot be used as a citation in a "whole of contents" novelty objection if it is withdrawn before it has been advertised under sec 54;

  • the application cannot be used as the parent of a divisional application under sec 79B or sec 79C filed after the date of the withdrawal; and

  • any requests for amendment under sec 104 involving the application cannot be processed further.

Generally withdrawal of an application is final and a notice cannot itself be withdrawn or the withdrawal reversed.  However, in very limited circumstances a request to withdraw an application may be considered to have no effect and reversed – see Reversing Withdrawal of an Application.

Withdrawn Ecases are usually marked with the status "WITHDRAWN" on the ECase Summary screen in PAMS, however occasionally this may be omitted. Examiners should therefore check the contents of the case prior to issuing any report. In particular, examiners should check the correspondence to see whether it contains an applicant's written notice of withdrawal.

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