The Japanese court system has been slow to modernize, making it difficult for foreign litigants to deal with lawsuits there. This includes intellectual property cases. The Intellectual Property High Court (IPHC) is set to relocate with a few branches of the Tokyo District Court and form a distinct “Business Court” in 2021.
The Business Court is expected to concentrate on intellectual property, business, and bankruptcy cases. Beyond specialization, many are hoping that the new building will host up-to-date video teleconferencing facilities, enabling interviews to take place simply and speedily.
The number of IP-related litigation cases in Japan has increased dramatically over last year, and the trend is likely to continue. International litigation over intellectual property should become a faster process (as long as litigants continue to retain skilled, culturally attuned agents in Japan). Hopefully this will mean improved international business relations and smoother prosecution of IP cases.
Writer: Josiah T. Momose.
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Sources (in Japanese)
November 20, 2017 Nikkei Shimbun article: https://www.nikkei.com/article/DGXMZO2369412020112017CR8000/