Patent/IP in Japan
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Intellectual Property in Japan
For a list of Patent Attorneys, please click on the 'Patent Attorneys in Japan' tab located above.
Intellectual Property, or IP, as it is colloquially called, is characterised as legal protection for commercially precious products of human intellect. There are, generally, three forms of IP: patents, copyrights and trademarks. Although these articles are similar many some ways, they each have individual idiosyncrasies and definitions which make them unique. Perhaps most importantly, there is no physicality to intellectual property. If effectively safeguards an intangible idea or process.
Generally speaking, patents are granted to inventors for inventions. These can include anything from machinery, tools, processes, chemicals, biotechnology, software, etc.
To qualify for a patent, an inventor must invariably create something that is:
- Of patentable matter
- Unique to patentee
- Merited and can be utilised
Under a patent, the patentee reserves the right stop or limit others from utilising and trading the invention. Without explicit permission from the patentee, persons using the patent in any of these ways are infringing, and could be subjected to legal action.
Japanese patent law is based on the first-come-first-served principle. It is primarily given force by the Patent Act. You will be required to submit a request, specification, claims, illustration, and the abstract to the Japan Patent Office. The longevity of a patent is 20 years from the filing date.
Trademarks are used to denote epithets, logos, symbols, slogans, etc, that are individual to a business and product. Fundamentally, the things that distinguish your product or service from a competitor's. Businesses understandably go to endless lengths to have control over their trademarks. Therefore, any persons found infringing upon them through unlawful use could be subject to legal action.
Famous examples of trademarks are Coca Cola and McDonald's.
Japanese trademark law is mainly overseen and granted by the Trademark Act. Those persons first to file an application will be granted the registration for a trademark over a prior user of the same trademark.
Copyright gives someone to sell and reproduce a protected product, which is invariably printed work. Things like books, magazines, websites, photographs, music, film and art are common examples of copyrighted work. Copyright denotes five rights of the author, artist, etc: reproduction, distribution, adaptation, performance and display. Use of such materials or works without the explicit permission of the copyright holder is classed as infringement, and persons doing so could be subject to legal action.Registration Office
Japan Patents Office
Japan Fax: +81 335 8107 62
Organisations that can assist with Patent/IP
When expanding your business to Japan, donít forget to protect your brand. We provide Trademark Registration Services in Japan and in all Asian countries