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The Chartered Institute of Patent Attorneys


How Qualifying Examinations are marked

Qualifying Examinations Exemptions

Requesting a Law Exemption from FC2 English Law   

Exemption requests can be made at any time, and we recommend requests for an FC2 (English Law) exemption are made no later than six weeks before the examination registration closing date. Requests received after this date will still be considered, but we cannot guarantee that they will be processed before the examination registration closing date.

Please send an email to explaining which qualification you hold listed in Schedule 3 of the IPReg Rules for Examination and Admission of Individuals.            


Special Consideration Candidate Guidance

If you think your performance in the examination is affected by distressing circumstances at the time of the examination you must submit a written report with evidence to support your request to Each application will be considered individually.

Eligible circumstances for special consideration typically include the following events occurring between the date of application to enter the examination and the close of the examination:

  • death of a close family member or close friend or where there are ongoing implications such as a court case at the time of the examination
  • serious and disruptive domestic crisis
  • diagnosis of terminal illness of a close family member or close friend
  • significant incapacitating illness of the candidate or close family member
  • major surgery
  • disease
  • car accident
  • permanent bodily injury
  • severe asthmatic attack
  • flare-up of congenital conditions such as epilepsy or diabetes
  • physical assault/trauma.

Where an unpredicted disruption at the time of the tests occurs, such as a fire alarm sounding in the examination room, this will be reported by the invigilator, you do not need to report this.

You cannot ask for special consideration where you:

  • have a permanent disability or condition, unless another significant illness affects you at the time of the examination
  • have a sensory or physical disability that means you cannot access the examination, even with access arrangements or modified test materials
  • are affected by the consequences of committing a crime
  • fail to apply for special considerations within the published time frame.

Reasonable Adjustments

1. Completing a PEB Examination Registration form

When you complete this form, and if you request any reasonable adjustments you will be asked to submit medical or other evidence in support of your claim.

2. Terms used

These terms have the following meanings.

Medical evidence



A written report from, for example, a hospital consultant, a GP, physiotherapist, occupational therapist, educational psychologist.

NB You are responsible for the cost of any such report.

Usual working practice



A written report from, for example, your employer, mentor, or evidence of access arrangements agreed by higher education institution for an examination you undertook in the last five years.

NB You are responsible for the cost of any report.

Reasonable adjustments


Requests notified to be PEB at the time of examination registration and accompanied by written evidence of need.

In exceptional circumstances, you may request a reasonable adjustment after the date of examination entry, and up the date of the examination, if there is a change in your circumstances.

Access arrangements


These are agreed before an examination. They allow candidates with special educational needs, disabilities or temporary injuries to:

  • access the examination;

  • show what they know and can do without changing the demands of the examination.

3. Reasonable adjustments

Here is a list of the reasonable adjustments available and the evidence required if you wish to request an adjustment for your examination.

Access arrangement Required evidence
Assistive technologies · Usual working practice or
· Medical evidence
Braille · Usual working practice or
· Medical evidence
Coloured lenses/overlay/ paper · Usual working practice or
· Medical evidence
Examination in a separate room ·  Usual working practice or
· Medical evidence
Examination other than in a recognised centre · Usual working practice or
· Medical evidence
Extra time · Medical evidence
Modified print · Usual working practice or 
· Medical evidence
Practical assistant · Exceptional circumstances or
· Medical evidence
Reader · Exceptional circumstances or
· Medical evidence
Screen reader · Usual working practice
Scribe · Exceptional circumstances or
· Medical evidence
Supervised rest breaks ·  Usual working practice or
·  Medical evidence
Voice activated software ·  Medical evidence
Handwriting ·  Medical evidence

4. Supporting evidence

Here is more detailed advice on what evidence you need to provide for extra time or supervised rest breaks.

Supervised rest breaks should be requested before making a request for extra time; since they are often more appropriate if you have a medical condition, a physical disability or a psychological condition. Time taken for supervised rest breaks does not reduce the overall time allowed for writing in the examination.

  • Extra time is allocated at the rate 15 minutes per hour of the examination to a maximum of one hour.

  • Supervised rest breaks are permitted in any combination of periods of time at the rate of 15 minutes per hour of the examination to a maximum of one hour. Only rest break time actually taken will be added to the examination time for any candidate.


Your request for either extra time or supervised rest breaks (not both) must be supported by evidence from a qualified professional, for example:

For supervised rest breaks only

  • A written report from an employer or mentor, supporting your application for a rest break, confirming that this represents the normal way of working for you. 

For supervised rest breaks or extra time

  • A written report from a clinical psychologist, GP, hospital consultant or psychiatrist.

So as not to give an unfair advantage, your request for extra time or supervised rest breaks must:

  • provide relevant information/evidence of the nature and extent of the disability or difficulty;
  • confirm that you have persistent and significant difficulties when accessing and processing information;
  • show evidence of how the disability/difficulty has impacted on usual daily working practice
  • for supervised rest breaks confirm that extra time is your normal way of working as a direct consequence of your disability;
  • confirm that without the application of extra time or rest breaks you would be at a substantial disadvantage when compared with other, non-disabled candidates undertaking the assessment. 

Dyslexia or specific learning difficulties

If your request for extra time or rest breaks is on the basis of your Dyslexia or Specific Learning Difficulties your request must be supported by a psychological assessment carried out by:

  • an independent consulting psychologist, registered with the Health and Care Professions Council (HCPC); or
  • a qualified, specially trained teacher or lecturer with a current Assessment Practising Certificate.