Asia Patent Alliance

Examples for the requirements for unity of the invention

 

On June 26, 2013 the JPO announced a revision of the examination standard regarding “unity of the invention” and “amendments that shift of special technical features of the invention”. The revision will be applied to all applications examined from July 01 of the same year. As this revision relaxed the examination standard filing in Japan has become more convenient for applicants. In this one point lesson we would like to provide a deeper understanding of the requirements for unity by explaining examples taken from JPO reference material.

As explained in last month’s news there are 4 important points regarding the requirements for unity. Before the revision (A) inventions including all matters specifying the invention where STF were found first would be subject of examination. In addition to that now (B) inventions that have the same or corresponding STF to the invention where STF were found first will be subject of examination as well. Also now (C) inventions including all matters specifying the invention in claim 1 (inventions depending on claim 1) will be examined. However inventions with only little relevance will be excluded. Finally as before (D) inventions that have been examined until STF were found first and where the examination has been substantially finished fulfill the requirements for unity.

We will now have a look at some examples and see if the above points apply.

Example 1- Subject of examination based on same or corresponding STF

CLAIMS

·  1. Sewage processing device containing a photoreaction tank, equipped with a high-output lamp emitting pulsed light mainly on ultraviolet wavelength

·  2. Sewage processing device containing a photoreaction tank according to claim 1 with photocatalysts in the photoreaction tank

·  3. Sewage processing device containing a photoreaction tank according to claim 2 where the photoreaction tank is equipped with an
   oxidation additive mechanism in the upstream region

·  4. Sewage processing device containing a photoreaction tank according to claim 1 where the photoreaction tank is equipped with an
   oxidition additive mechanism in the upstream region

·  5. Sewage processing device containing a photoreaction tank according to claim 4 equipped with a deposition thank where after processing
   the suspended matter of the sewage is precipitated


Problem the invention in claim 1 tries to solve

Efficient processing of sewage that contains high-concentrated refractory COD

Result of prior art search

In the invention in claims 1 and 2 STF could not be found. In the invention in claim 3 STF were found. (“Sewage processing device containing a photoreaction tank where the photoreaction tank is equipped with an oxidition addtive mechanism in the upstream region”)

 photo wanpoint2ndfigENG_zps517543c5.jpg

Claims 1 to 5 are subject of examination. Claims 1 to 3 apply to case D descrived above. Claims 4 and 5 apply to case B.

Example 3 – Subject of examination according to the efficiency of examination

CLAIMS

·  1. Glasses with a frame made of titanium alloy for weight reduction

·  2. Glasses according to claim 1 with a frame made of beta titanium alloy for weight reduction

·  3. Glasses according to claim 1 with a frame made of an alloy from titanium and nickle for weight reduction …(Abbr.)

·  14. Glasses according to claim 1 where composition ratio between titanium and the other metal of the previously mentioned titanium alloy is …

·  15. Glasses according to claim 1 with a lens made of plastic material X1 for weight reduction

·  16. Glasses according to claim 1 with a lens made of plastic material X2 for weight reduction

·  17. Glasses according to claim 1 with a lens made of plastic material X3 for weight reduction


Problem the invention in claim 1 tries to solve

Reducing the weight of glasses

Result of prior art search

No STF were found in the invention described in claims 1 and 2.

 photo wanpointfigFF11ENG_zps67994fac.jpg

Claims 1 – 14 will be suject of examination. Claims 1 and 2 apply to case D and 3 – 14 apply to case C. As for claims 15-17, they might apply to the exception of case C and might not be suject of examination. Even if they also try to reduce the weight of glasses, the have been judged as having little relevance to claim 1 and the additional STF.

* “Special Technical Features (STF)” refers to the demonstration of a technological contribution to the prior art of the invention in question.
Source for examples:http://www.jpo.go.jp/shiryou/kijun/kijun2/hatsumei_kaitei.htm