FAQ

November 2, 2016

How do you license a patent in Japan?

One of the most effective ways to successfully monetize a patent is to license it to another party.  In exchange for a royalty or set fee, a third party can make or sell products that include the patented invention.  There are two main types of licenses in Japan: Exclusive Licenses and Non-Exclusive Licenses.
October 13, 2016

Is it possible to patent an invention that is already known to others?

One of the main requirements to obtain a patent is that the invention not be known to the public.  This prevents people from patenting inventions that are not special and unique to the inventor.  Therefore, it is important to keep an invention secret until you’ve had a chance to discuss patenting it with an attorney.
September 14, 2016

Is it possible to search for registered patents in Japan?

Access to patent information isn’t just important for inventors looking to protect their inventions but also for companies looking to license new technology.  Therefore, the National Center for Industrial Property Information and Training runs an online search tool called the Patent Licensing Information Database that freely allows the public to search for information about registered patents.  There is no fee to use the service and no registration is required.
September 2, 2016

What happens if a spouse won’t support his or her spouse’s visa renewal?

Certain visas to legally stay in Japan are based upon being married to a resident of Japan.  This can include foreign nationals who are married to Japanese citizens and receive a spouse visa, or for foreign national couples where one spouse who has legal status in Japan is supporting the other through a family based visa.  As these visas depend on the marital status of the couple, it is often critical for the spouses to work together to obtain a renewal of these visas.  However, if the sponsoring spouse decides to withhold his or her cooperation in renewing a visa, there […]