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Every year, some 400 000 patent applications are filed with the Japan Patent Office (JPO). This area provides information on filing trends and grant figures in Japan, offers background information on special features of the Japanese patent system, and gives guidance on Japanese patent documentation essentials, including the numbering system and Japanese imperial years.


Answers to common questions about patents and patent information in Japan. If you cannot find the answer you are looking for, you can write to us using our form.

Grant procedure

A flowchart overview of the most important steps in the Japanese procedures from filing an application to the grant of a patent.

Useful terms

Some common patent terms in Japanese, Western transcription and English translation.

Facts and figures

Developments in filing figures and application trends in Japan, based on data taken from the Japan Patent Office's annual reports.

Numbering system

An introduction to the most important document types (including kind codes) and explanations of the formats for document numbers in Japan.

Searching in databases

Tips and tricks for using free Japanese data sources without knowing the language. Simple, step-by-step search guides demonstrate how to make the most of the wealth of data available in original Japanese databases.

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