Examination Procedure

When a patent application is filed with the Japan Patent Office (JPO), the formality section of the JPO examines if the application meets the formality requirements. When the application does not meet the formality requirements, a formality examiner requests an applicant to amend the application. After 18 months from a filing date, the JPO publishes the patent application.  All the patent applications […]

Specification and Claims

The patent applicant must determine what type of invention a patent is being applied for. Therefore, the applicant must describe all matters necessary for specifying the invention to be patented. The technical scope of the patented invention is determined based on the description in each of the claims, and the invention described in each claim […]


When amending the specification, the scope of the claims, or the drawings, the amendments must be within the scope described in the claims or drawings. Amendments that include contents that exceed the scope of the elements initially described in the specification of the application (in other words, new matter), are not allowed. Matter initially described […]

Critical Deadlines

There are critical deadlines for Japanese Patent Applications under the Japanese Patent Law through filing to registration or grant.  1) Request for Examination – 3 years from a filing date After a Japanese patent application is filed with the Japan Patent Office, an applicant needs to file a request for examinnation within three years from a […]