The Design Act, along with Article 2(1)(iii) of the Unfair Competition Prevention Act, protects the design of industrial products (subject to registration with the Japan Patent Office, for a period of 25 years from the filing date of the design registration for the product).
Claims in litigation must be made using language, and in the arena of design law, a unique method of expression is used to verbalize the form of the design and to handle design law cases. Attorneys are required to be highly skilled in this regard.
And, as with trademark law, the sensory issue of similarity and dissimilarity is a point of contention. Therefore, attorneys must persuade judges in a visual sense and be able to quantify such effects, etc.
Disputes over design rights in Japan are less common than disputes over patents and other intellectual property litigation. However, we have a wealth of experience in this area.
In addition to disputes, we also provide advice on the filing of related designs and partial designs, as well as on points to keep in mind when filing applications - practical consulting based on litigation experience. We also prepare various design-related contracts, such as design development contracts with domestic and international design firms and confidentiality agreements.