How long does patent protection in Japan last?

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The monopoly right granted to an inventor by filing a patent acts as an incentive to keep people innovating and creating new things. If no patent right were available, others could quickly copy the invention and the inventor would not necessarily reap any financial reward for his or her creativity and hard work. Therefore the longer the period of patent protection, the longer an inventor has to profit from his or her invention and the more incentive there is for future inventors to create new and innovative products.

Filing for a patent in Japan provides a substantial period of protection. Patent rights in Japan last for 20 years and may be extended for a further five years for pharmaceutical products and agricultural chemicals. This is comparable to the protection grated by a United States patent, which also lasts for 20 years.

If you have any questions about patent law in Japan, please contact our office for a legal consultation.