Approaches to Claim Reduction to Avoid Multiple-Multiple Dependent Claims

By November 14, 2023 News

In our last post, McCoy Russell discussed the impact of the change in Japanese Patent Law as to Multiple-Multiple Dependent Claims prohibition. This change has prompted many to reconsider their approach to drafting patent applications.

In light of this change, patent applicants need to be aware of the new regulations and make the necessary adjustments in their patent drafting processes. Patent applicants need to be diligent when drafting their applications. To avoid any issues, they should thoroughly review their claims and ensure that they do not include multiple-multiple dependent claims. Such claims can result in immediate rejection, causing delays and complications in the patent application process.

Patent applicants and practitioners need to adapt to these changes and refrain from using such claims in applications filed on or after April 1, 2022. One such approach taken by McCoy Russell involves explicit support for both singly dependent and multiple dependent claims in the original application, whether it’s a US or foreign filing. This approach can help applicants maintain flexibility and mitigate the risk of losing priority when seeking patent protection in various jurisdictions.

Explicit support for both singly dependent and multiple dependent claims in the original application offers several advantages:

  • Global Applicability: By including explicit support for both types of dependent claims, applicants create patent applications that are versatile and adaptable to different jurisdictions, including Japan.
  • Priority Preservation: This approach safeguards against the loss of priority when transitioning from one jurisdiction to another. With well-supported dependent claims, patent applicants can ensure that their rights are protected consistently across the board.
  • Streamlined Application Process: Explicitly supporting both types of dependent claims from the outset simplifies the process of adapting the application to meet the specific requirements of different patent offices.
  • Cost-Efficiency: Eliminating the need for excessive claim amendments or additional fees to rectify issues related to multiple-multiple dependent claims can result in cost savings for patent applicants.

The recent changes in Japanese patent law have altered the landscape of patent applications in the country. McCoy Russell takes a proactive approach and can navigate these changes successfully for its clients. Contact us if you think McCoy Russell can be of assistance.