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Can I register a sound in Japan?

Yes. The Trademark Law of Japan has introduced the registration of sound mark. The standard is fairly high, and the JPO has approved 110 sound trademarks among 517 applications by the end of Feb. 2017. While the trademark application procedures are similar to that of a standard mark, the description must be accompanied by an audio or video reproduction of the sound.

When can I register my trademark?

You can register your trademark at any time as long as you have a genuine intention to use or continue using the mark.

Is it necessary to register my Business Name / Company Name as trademark in Japan?

No. It is not mandatory to register your Business Name or Company Name as trademark in Japan even if you are trading under a name other than your own personal name. However, to put yourself in the best possible position to stop competitors from copying your name/brand, you need to register it as a trademark.

Can two or more persons have the same trademark?

Yes. Provided their respective uses are not likely to cause deception or confusion to consumers.

Is it required to file a statement of use of the trademark at the time of filing an application?

No. Use of mark prior to filing an application is not mandatory in Japan. Trademarks that are not in use prior to registration can also be registered.