Intellectual Property

We Stand Ready to Support your Intellectual Property Rights

Maintaining and protecting Intellectual Property is quickly becoming essential to staying competitive as a business in an increasingly international market. In Japan, like anywhere else, patents, trademarks and copyrights are now more important than ever and it is essential to pick the right law firm to represent you in these matters in the Japanese market.

The Ohara Law Office has extensive experience with Intellectual Property law in Japan and internationally. Mr. Ohara has authored many articles on the international aspects of patent practice, and is a noted lecturer on the subject. Our team of skilled patent attorneys has worked with both the Japanese Patent Office and the United States Patent and Trademark Office and have a deep understanding of both Japanese and American legal and patent systems. We stand ready to support you in every aspect of registering, protecting and monetizing your Intellectual Property in Japan or around the world.

Simplifying the Patent Registration Process

The exclusive right obtained with a patent, trademark or copyright in Japan is essential in securing your competitive advantage and maximizing your investments in innovation and design. Our firm has a strong Japanese Intellectual Property practice developed in the legal representation of a broad range of clients, from microchip design houses to aircraft manufacturers, chemical electronic powerhouses and entertainment groups.

There are four main laws governing the registration of Intellectual Property in Japan: Patent and Utility Model Law, Trademark Law, Design Law, and Copyright Law.

The Patent law and Utility Model law provide protection for inventions in Japan. Inventions protected under the Patent law will receive a period of market protection that gives the owner the exclusive right to produce and sell the invention in Japan. The Utility Model law protects the shape or structure of a device and its protections are usually applied to simpler inventions that do not warrant a patent.

The Trademark law protects a logo, recognizable mark or design. Trademarks are typically employed to protect the logos of corporations or the design of a brand mark. Quickly acquiring trademark protection for a recognizable design prevents others from imitating it and is the first step in establishing a successful brand presence in Japan.

The Design law provides protection for shape, form and external appearance of an object. It is similar to the Trademark law, but protects three dimensional designs rather than logos or marks. The design must be novel and unique as well as capable of being mass produced. The Design law also allows protection of a set of objects, saving the applicant time and money.

Copyright law generally protect compositions of various types. Some common examples of frequently copyrighted products include songs, movies, poems, books and comedy routines. Normally, copies of other works cannot be copyrighted but translations, adaptations and musical remixes can receive copyright protection because they contain the additoinal expression of the person who adapts the original work.

It is important to note that all applications to the Japan Patent Office must be submitted in Japanese and any accompanying documents, drawings and claims should have a Japanese translation.  Please let us help you in registering your patent, trademark or copyright in Japan or America to provide the best possible protection against infringement. If you have a patent, trademark, or copyright that you would like our help registering or have questions the registration of Intellectual Property in Japan, please don’t hesitate to contact our office.

Your Intellectual Property Is In Good Hands With Us

Protect your hard work with a well-crafted licensing agreement

The key to efficiently monetizing Intellectual Property lies in a well-crafted licensing agreement. A tightly written licensing agreement can allow you to reap the rewards of your ideas and designs, while a poorly drafted licensing agreement can leave your ideas open to exploitation or can even result in misuse or degradation of the brand value contained in your Intellectual Property.

Our law firm has extensive experience in drafting and enforcing licensing agreements for all types of Intellectual Property both within Japan and on an international level. Let us help you draft a licensing agreement that will let you maximize the profit from your Intellectual Property in Japan.

You can depend on us to defend your Intellectual Property

In the event that another company infringes on your Intellectual Property in Japan, our team of experienced litigators are ready to vigorously defend your rights in court. We have successfully litigated many patent infringement cases in Japanese courts as well as worked in cooperation with other patent firms on large-scale international patent infringement lawsuits. Please don’t hesitate to call or email us in the event that you fear your Intellectual Property rights might have been infringed upon in Japan or anywhere else.