Saturday, April 29, 2017

JPO Expands IP Insurance Coverage to the Entire World


The Japan Patent Office (JPO) has provided an IP insurance which covers expenses when an SME is involved into IP disputes in foreign countries since July 2016, as previously reported in this blog.

The outline of the insurance is as below.

  • Covered region: the entire world (can select countries)
  • Payment limit: JPY 30 million and 50 million newly added to the existing plans

This insurance doesn’t pay for damages and license fee. Therefore, SMEs still should obtain good patents, whether by themselves or from third parties, in the countries where they do business, even when they buy the insurance.

According to the JPO’s follow-up survey on subsidy for foreign patent filing in 2016 (933 responses), 6% of companies have been asserted IP infringement. I hope that Japanese SMEs become active and successfully distinguish themselves in foreign countries enough to make competitors feel an urge to drive them away from the market.

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