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Home > Obtaining IP Rights > International Applications > PCT International Applications > Designated Office (national phase) > How to advance PCT international applications into the national phase in Japan

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How to advance PCT international applications into the national phase in Japan

(i) Time limit for entering into the national phase in Japan

a. Time limit for submitting national documents

As a general rule, the time limit for entering into the national phase in Japan is 30 months from the priority date. In order to advance a PCT international application into the national phase in Japan, Japanese translations* of the PCT international application must be submitted to the JPO within 30 months from the priority date and a special transmittal form (Form No. 53 (PDF:30KB)) is available for such submission. This will hereinafter be referred to as the "time limit for submitting national documents".

*translations : required contents of the translations are description, claims, drawings (any text matter of drawings), and abstract. Translations may be attached to Form No. 53 or "Submission of Translation of the Application (PDF:26KB)" where translations are not submitted with Form No. 53. Where amendments have been filed under PCT Article 19 or 34, the translations of such amendments must be submitted to the JPO within 30 months from the priority date. (Form No.52 (PDF:31KB) or From No.54 (PDF:29KB) is available.)

b. Special time limit for submitting translations

If you submit a Form No. 53 within two months prior to the expiration of the "time limit for submitting national documents", i.e., during a period from the beginning of the 29th month to the end of the 30th month from the priority date, you may submit the translations within two months from the date of submitting the Form No. 53. This will hereinafter be referred to as the “special time limit for submitting translations.”

Where amendments have been filed under PCT Article 19 or 34, the translations of such amendments shall also be submitted to the JPO within the “special time limit for submitting translations.”

Please note that the PCT international application will be deemed to have been withdrawn in Japan if translations have not been submitted to the JPO within the prescribed period.

c. Time limit for submitting a notification of power of attorney

In principle, all procedures at the national phase in Japan must be made by a representative in Japan because applicants domiciled overseas are not allowed to conduct any procedures directly with the JPO under Article 8 of the Patent Act. A representative in Japan must be appointed and the notification of power of attorney must be filed with the JPO within three months after the expiration of the "time limit for submitting national documents" or the "special time limit for submitting translations" (if applicable).

If a request for examination is submitted earlier than the expiration of the "time limit for submitting national documents" or the "special time limit for submitting translations", a representative in Japan must be appointed and the notification of power of attorney must be submitted within three months after the request for examination, which may be accepted after the national phase entry.

Where the applicant filed any documents not through an agent, the Office sends to the applicant an invitation to appoint one. If the applicant fails to appoint one within two months from the date of mailing of the said invitation from the Office, the applications shall be deemed to have been withdrawn.

(ii) How to submit documents to the JPO

Form No. 53 and translations may be submitted directly to the JPO by postal mail service from abroad. The mailing address is as follows:

JAPAN PATENT OFFICE

Customer Relations Policy Division

Designated Office

3-4-3 Kasumigaseki, Chiyoda-ku, Tokyo

100-8915, Japan

There is an electronic online system for entering the Japanese national phase, however, the system is available only for those applicants or representatives in Japan who have carried out the necessary registration proceeding at the JPO in advance.

The JPO does not accept any submissions of Form No. 53 by e-mail, or fax.

Please note that documents for entering into the national phase must reach the JPO prior to the expiration of the "time limit for submitting national documents", i.e., within 30 months from the priority date or “special time limit for submitting translations”, if applicable.

(iii) National fee (as of 1 April 2016)

The fee required to enter into the national phase in Japan is 14,000 JPY (National fee). Payment of the national fee to the JPO must be made in Japanese Yen, by means of patent revenue stamps which can be purchased at major Japan Post Co., Ltd. offices in Japan.

Some other payment methods, such as the advance payment system, bank account transfer or online cash transfer, may be available provided that the applicant or representative in Japan has carried out the necessary registration proceeding at the JPO in advance.

The JPO does not accept any payment made directly from overseas residents, such as payment by international bank account transfer, or by credit card or by check, therefore, payment by an applicant overseas must be made through a representative (e.g., patent attorney) appointed in Japan.

(iv) Time limit for a request for examination

A request for examination (Form No. 44 (PDF:26KB)) for the PCT international application which entered into the national phase in Japan must be submitted through a representative appointed in Japan within three years of the international filing date of the PCT international application. The fee required to request for examination is as follows (as of 23 July 2013): - if an international search report has been established by an International Searching Authority (other than the JPO) under the PCT: 106,000 JPY, plus 3,600 JPY per claim - if the International Searching Authority declare that no search report will be established: 118,000 JPY, plus 4,000 JPY per claim. Patent fees are the same as those for national patent applications: (Link to FAQ 4-1 ---"How much are the fees?")

(v) Others

Please refer to the "PCT Applicant's Guide" on the WIPO website for details on relevant procedures.

http://www.wipo.int/pct/guide/en/gdvol2/annexes/jp.pdf <PDF 124KB>( External link )

[Last updated 12 April 2016]

Contact

Designated Office

Customer Relations Policy Division

Japan Patent Office

TEL: +81-3-3581-1101 Ext.2644

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