Written description/sufficiency of disclosure

In June 2019, the PHEP successfully finalised its work in the areas of written description and sufficiency of disclosure. This project was led by the Japan Patent Office, and focused on making comparative studies of hypothetical cases and studying how IP5 Offices and users determine written description and sufficiency of disclosure for each case.

The PHEP analysed three hypothetical cases on the support requirement in the chemistry field and also analysed three other hypothetical cases to check the clarity and the support requirements in the electric and machinery fields.

Users also provided their feedback for all the cases, from the point of the support requirement and/or the clarity requirement. Results showing how the IP5 Offices and users determined these factors were summarized in an easily understandable chart.

The IP5 Offices provided not only “yes” and “no” answers on the clarity and support requirements but also included points of laws and regulations supporting their determinations and the reasons for their determinations.

In terms of benefits of and potential next steps for this comparative study, users can know about the offices’ practices by referring to the outcome and making use of it when drafting their applications. As for the Offices, they can learn what are common practices among the offices and also what are different practices. By learning about the practices, they can build their confidence in using other offices’ examination results. In addition, the IP5 Offices will find it beneficial to continue working on this with users.