May 1st, 2014
clients who seek trademark protection in Japan, regarding prior trademark
search and assessment of distinctiveness services, we provide Premium (highly
specialized legal service) and LCS (Low Cost Strategy).
you are aware, in order to use a trademark or obtain registration of a
trademark, it is desirable to conduct a search for prior trademark rights as
well as an assessment of whether or not the trademark has distinctiveness.
is because a trademark application is objected as not being eligible for
registration (registrable) if the trademark is judged to be devoid of distinctiveness
or be identical or similar to a registered trademark of a third party. Further,
if you initiate the use of a trademark even though there is an identical or
similar registered trademark of a third party, you are responsible for
infringing the trademark right of the third party. In order to avoid such
situations, it is essential to conduct the prior trademark search and the assessment
of distinctiveness before using a trademark or applying for trademark
We offer three options available for the
clients to select depending on the budget and need.
30,000 JPY or more
50,000 JPY or more
Premium & LCS
You can optionally switch to option A (Premium) later.
When you file a trademark application, the
Japan Patent Office (JPO) conducts an examination as to whether or not the
trademark is eligible for registration. In a substantive examination conducted
at this time, the examiner mainly determines whether or not the trademark has
distinctiveness and whether or not the trademark is identical or similar to a
registered trademark of a third party. Therefore, it is important to conduct a
pre-application search and assessment to confirm that the trademark meets the
The following are details of options A
Option A: Premium (Full
Service under option
a prior trademark search and an assessment of distinctiveness are conducted.
(2) For the
prior trademark search, a charged database with high accuracy (e.g., Brandy) is
on the results of the prior
trademarks search and the assessment of distinctiveness, our trademark
specialist provides an opinion on the overall registrability of your trademark
and a possibility of infringement of a trademark right of a third party, if any.
<Advantage of option A>
Under option A, both a prior trademark
search using an accurate charged database and an assessment of distinctiveness are
conducted by our trademark specialist in accordance with the examination
standard of the JPO. This enables you to obtain a highly accurate estimate of
the overall registrability of your trademark before filing an application.
Therefore, we basically recommend the Premium option (highly-specialized legal
service) in which full search is conducted.
Option B: LCS (Prior Trademark
examiner decides whether your trademark is similar to prior trademarks
trademark is not eligible for registration if the trademark is identical or
similar to a registered trademark of a third party. The decision of whether or
not a trademark is identical or similar to a registered trademark is made on
the basis of both (i) whether or not the trademark itself is identical or
similar to the registered trademark and (ii) whether or not the designated
goods or services of the trademark are identical or similar to those of the
the prior trademark search is conducted without the assessment of distinctiveness.
(2) For the
prior trademark search, a free database (J-PlatPat) is used.
trademark specialist provides an opinion on the registrability of your trademark
in relation to prior trademarks.
B is available in combination with our LCS trademark application service.
<Advantage of option B>
Option B is useful in cases where your
trademark obviously has distinctiveness or you would like to narrow down
candidate trademarks for application by a simple prior trademark search.
Option C: Premium & LCS
(Assessment of Distinctiveness)
examiner decides whether your trademark has distinctiveness
trademark must enable goods or services associated with the trademark to be distinguished
from other goods or services. Accordingly, a trademark must allow the consumers
to recognize the goods or services as those pertaining to a business of a
particular person (in other words, a trademark must have distinctiveness).
the assessment of distinctiveness is conducted without the prior trademark
trademark specialist provides an opinion on the registrability of your
trademark in relation to distinctiveness.
basic fee is 10,000 JPY. In a case of a trademark associated with two or more classes,
an additional fee of 2,000 JPY per class is charged.
■ If you are considering option C for five
or more trademarks, please let us know as we can offer a volume discount of the
basic fee and the additional fee.
■ In a case where you further request us to
conduct a full search after a distinctiveness search, we will include the
distinctiveness search fee in the full search fee.
<Advantage of option C>
Option C is useful if you have multiple
candidate trademarks for application and would like to use option C to narrow
them down and then use option A (Premium) only with respect to candidates
judged to have distinctiveness. In other words, option C can be used as a
preliminary step for option A.
[Flow of Procedure]
fill out the followings in the Request Form below:
Your selected option (from options A to C); and
Trademark for which to conduct a search and/or an assessment;
Scope of the search and/or the assessment (designated goods
Our staff member will contact you and let you know the
flow of the procedure.
We recommend this service to those who
would like to receive low-cost legal service concerning trademark search and
assessment in Japan while enjoying sense of safety with reliable support of a
large-scale, international, integrated, and well organized intellectual
property law firm.