April 18, 2024


Revision of Japanese Trademark Law (Introduction of Trademark Consent System, etc.)

The Japanese Trademark Law has been revised by the partial revision of the Unfair Competition Prevention Act (Act No. 51 of June 14, 2023). This revision includes introduction of a trademark consent system and relaxation of registration requirements for trademarks containing the name of another person. The consent system in Japan allows the registration of a trademark that is identical or similar to a prior registered trademark and is used for identical or similar goods/services, under the condition that the prior registered trademark owner gives consent and there is no likelihood of confusion of origin (Practically, the JPO would not accept a trademark identical to a prior registered trademark and used for identical goods/services, even if a Letter of Consent is submitted.) In addition, trademarks containing the name of another person have become registrable without the other person’s permission as long as the other person is not well-known. Both revisions became effective for trademark applications filed on or after April 1, 2024. This IP News article will outline the revisions and provide our suggestions.