Candidates are admitted to the EQE if, on the date of the examination, they meet the following requirements:
Candidates have to possess a scientific or technical qualification - for example, in biology, biochemistry, chemistry, electronics, pharmacology or physics.
Any decisions regarding the admission to the examination are based on the conditions laid down in Article 11(1)(a) of the Regulation on the European qualifying examination (REE) and Rules 11 to 14 of the Implementing provisions to the REE.
b) Professional activity
Candidates must have trained under the supervision of a professional representative or as an employee dealing with patent matters in an industrial company established in one of the contracting states.
The mandatory practical training is very important, since a great deal of the knowledge required by a European patent attorney is gained during this period. During this period the candidates must take part in a wide range of activities pertaining to patent applications or patents.
Only periods of professional activity completed after the required qualifications were obtained are taken into account. The training period must be completed at the date of the examination.
EPO examiners may enrol for the EQE if they have performed the duties of examiner for at least four years.
The EQE is held once a year, usually in March. A notice indicating the examination dates and the closing date for enrolment is published in the preceding year.
d) Examination fee
The fee payable depends on the number of papers for which the candidate enrols. The basic fee is EUR 130 for the EQE 2011.