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Frequently asked questions on CIPO's fee payment practices

From: Canadian Intellectual Property Office

These frequently asked questions (FAQ) have been developed as a resource for clients to help clarify the changes related to the Canadian Intellectual Property Office (CIPO)'s fee payment practices and the introduction of the Fee form. Click on one of the topics provided below or scroll to a specific question. For further information or questions, please contact the Client Service Centre at 1-866-997-1936.

FAQ topics


General questions regarding the Fee form and payment process

1. Q: Why did CIPO release a new version of the Fee Payment Form?

A: CIPO added options for requesting a refund and closing a deposit account and renamed the form to Fee form. In addition, service fee types representing all CIPO fees were added to the form bringing clarity to the fee payment request which will result in expedited processing and reduced processing errors.

2. Q: Is the use of the Fee form mandatory?

A: If you are sending a payment by mail, facsimile or hand-delivery, CIPO strongly recommends the use of the Fee form. Using the form will improve the security of your financial information, as information submitted in the form will not be included in the file relating to an application and will not be made available for public inspection. The form will also reduce both mail-handling delays and the number of misapplied payments.

For faster processing, you are encouraged to pay certain fees online using CIPO's electronic filing systems, as these systems also ensure the security of your financial information.

3. Q: Is the Fee form the only method with which to make a payment?

A: No. A faster, more convenient way to make payments is via CIPO's electronic filing systems. The form is intended for fee payments sent by mail, facsimile or hand delivered.

4. Q: Should documents (such as covering correspondence) be submitted with the form?

A: Yes, any substantive information, such as information concerning the purpose for which the fee is paid or information concerning the prosecution of an application, must be submitted in a separate document (such as covering correspondence). The same rule applies for requests for refunds. It is important to provide the reason for the request and to indicate as necessary, the application, registration or patent number. Submitting a fee payment using the form does not exempt the client from taking any other action required to fulfill the conditions pursuant to the relevant statutes and regulations. Information submitted on the form is not considered to be part of the substantive file relating to an application or any other procedure. CIPO does not make this information available for public inspection.

Also, in order to help with effective processing of your fee payment, please provide brief instructions or information regarding the purpose of your fee payment.

5. Q: Do I use the Fee form to replenish my deposit account?

A: Yes, the Fee form should be used when replenishing a deposit account and sending payment to CIPO by mail, facsimile or hand-delivery.

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Questions on how to use and complete the Fee form

6. Q: Where can I obtain a paper copy of the form?

A: The form is available online and can be printed from your computer. You can also submit a request or call the Client Service Centre (1-866-997-1936) in order to have a copy of the form mailed to you.

7. Q: How do I download and save the form?

A: To download the Fee form, right-click on the link below and select Save link as or Save target as. Then save the PDF to your computer.

Fee form (PDF: 160 KB; 8 pages)

You can then open the file with Adobe Reader®, complete the form, and submit it with your covering correspondence. For more detailed instructions, see below.

Instructions for how to download and open the Fee form PDF

Instructions for PC users

  1. Use your mouse to hover over the link for Download Fee form PDF.
  2. Right-click the link and select Save link or Save target as.
  3. Choose the location on your computer where you want to save the PDF form.
  4. Go to the file location where you saved the PDF form.
  5. Open the PDF form with Adobe Reader® DC (or a more recent version).
  6. Fill, save and print your PDF form.

Instructions for Mac users

  1. Use your mouse to hover over the link for Download Fee form PDF.
  2. Press the Control key (Ctrl) and click on the link.
  3. Choose Save link as or Download linked file as.
  4. Choose the location on your computer where you want to save the PDF form.
  5. Go to the file location where you saved the PDF form.
  6. Open the PDF form with Adobe Reader® DC (or a more recent version).
  7. Fill, save and print your PDF form.

8. Q: What version of Adobe Acrobat Reader is required to use the form in PDF?

A: To view and use the CIPO Fee form properly, it is recommended that you use Adobe Acrobat DC (Standard or Professional) or higher.

To check the version of Acrobat Reader you are using, click on the Windows button at the bottom left of your screen and view the Adobe version from the list of software programs under the letter A.

9. Q: How do I view the form with another version of Adobe Acrobat Reader (other than version DC)?

A: If you are using a version of Adobe Acrobat Reader other than version DC, you must first download and save the form to your computer in order for it to work properly. Next, open your Adobe Acrobat Reader software and select "File" from the top menu, then select "Open" from the drop-down menu. A new window will open from which you can retrieve the form you saved on your computer.

10. Q: Can I save and reuse information once I have entered it into the form?

A: Yes, information entered into the PDF version of the form can be saved and stored on your own computer for future use.

11. Q: Can I complete the form by hand or must I complete it on my computer and then print it?

A: The form can be completed by hand or on your computer. Choose the option that is most convenient for you. Please note that CIPO requires that the form be submitted by mail, facsimile or hand-delivery and will not accept the form by email.

For faster processing, you may continue to pay certain fees online using CIPO's electronic filing systems, as these systems also ensure the security of your financial information.

12. Q: How do I send the form to CIPO?

A: The Fee form can be sent by facsimile, mail or be hand delivered. Please refer to the contact page for CIPO's facsimile number and mailing address. For more details on our facsimile process, please refer to CIPO's correspondence procedures.

13. Q: If I do not have an application, registration or patent number, is completing the field necessary?

A: If you do not have an application number, registration or patent number, it is not necessary to complete this field. If you are submitting a new application, you will only receive your application number once your request has been processed. If you do have an application number, then it must be indicated on the Fee form to ensure that the fee is processed and applied appropriately.

14. Q: What is the client reference number field?

A: The client reference number field is for your convenience to enter your firm/company's internal client reference number. If provided, add the client reference number on all covering correspondence.

15. Q: What is the listing attached box?

A: The listing attached box indicates to CIPO that you have included a detailed list outlining the contents of the package being sent to CIPO for fee payment.

16. Q: Can an employee enter their name on behalf of a company in Section 1 of the form (contact information)?

A: Yes, an employee (e.g., an agent's clerk) can enter their name in section 1 of the Fee form. However, it is important to note that some legislation restricts who can correspond with the Office. Therefore, the name of the company or firm on whose behalf the employee is entering their name should be clearly mentioned. Please check the applicable legislation for further information.

17. Q: Whose name do I place on the form?

A: Enter the name of the contact associated with the method of payment being used. However, it is important to note that some legislation restricts who can correspond with the Office. Please check the applicable legislation for further information. See also the answer to the question above.

18. Q: Must a method of payment be specified with each form?

A: Yes, complete and accurate financial information concerning the method of payment must be included on the form or the fee payment may not be processed. There are 4 payment methods accepted on the form: credit card, deposit account, cheque/money order and wire transfer. Please consult the instructions contained on the Fee form for details pertaining to what information is needed to process the payment.

For more information concerning payment methods and CIPO practices, consult the following practice notices:

19. Q: Is the credit card identification number required to process the Fee form?

A: The credit card identification number (also called the card verification value or card security number) is only required for credit cards issued outside of Canada. For Canadian-issued credit cards, the card identification number is not required.

20. Q: Is it necessary to include an alternate method of payment?

A: No, it is not necessary to specify an alternate method of payment. This section is to be used at your discretion if you believe a second method of payment may be required to ensure that sufficient funds are available to cover the full payment. Please note that alternate payments can only be made by credit card or deposit account.

21. Q: Is a signature required on the Fee form?

A: A signature is not required for the processing of a payment made (by credit card or other method) using the Fee form. Space is provided at the bottom of the form should you wish to include a signature and the date for your company or firm's internal purposes or procedures.

22. Q: How do I cover a payment shortfall?

A: Clients can indicate one alternate method of payment to cover potential shortfalls. The alternate payment method information must be specified on the Fee form in section 2. CIPO will withdraw the funds from the methods of payment in the order in which they appear on the form. For more information regarding CIPO's payment practices, consult the following practice notices:

23. Q: Can we integrate the Fee form with our company's internal systems?

A: You can download, copy and save the Fee form to your own computer. We do not recommend that you recreate the form in your internal systems as the form may evolve over time. Should you choose to recreate the form to integrate it with your internal systems, attention should be paid to creating a complete replica of all fields. This will aid in the effective processing of your information and request.

For faster processing, you may continue to pay certain fees online using CIPO's electronic filing systems, as these systems also ensure the security of your financial information.

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