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Q69. First to File or First to Invent

Q69. First to File or First to Invent
 Which is prior, first to file or first to invent in Japan?

A69. Japanese patent law is based on the first-to-file principle. Under Art 39, where two or more patent applications claiming identical inventions have been filed on different dates, only the applicant who filed the patent application on the earliest date shall be entitled to obtain a patent for the invention claimed. If two or more applications have been filed on same day, the application entitled to obtain a patent must be determined by a conference of applicants.