Japan Patent Attorney Association recently announced a critical error with "J-Platpat" (Official Japanese IP database). Due to an internal systematic error, some trademark cases were not properly picked up when a trademark search was conducted.
Under "J-Platpat", access to cases will be temporarily restricted while registration details are being updated, such as when recording the change of registrant's name or address, recording the license and etc. During the update the cases will be labelled as "temporary unavailable" and details cannot be checked from the database. An investigation of the database revealed that trademark cases filed before year 1964 and labelled with "temporary unavailable" were erroneously excluded from the search subjects, as well.
Correction of the database is expected to take place upon system maintenance in May. Until then, Japan Patent Attorney Association is warning all patent attorneys to be careful when using the database, for example when conducting a trademark search.
Fortunately, trademark searches entrusted to Suzuye & Suzuye were conducted using a reliable database source and were not affected by this systematic error.
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