In Japan You Can Use a Pokemon Hanko Stamp As Your Signature

Personal seals have long been used to authorize things. Adding animation is the newest trend.

By Jessie Schiewe

Put down the pen and pick up a stamp. (Photo:  rawpixel )

Put down the pen and pick up a stamp. (Photo: rawpixel)

For more than a century, the Japanese have used personal seals — or hanko — in lieu of signatures for legal documents. Often made out of plastic, wood, or water buffalo horn, these personal stamps can be used to verify everything from mail delivery slips to wills.

More recently, animals, including cats, turtles and pandas, have been allowed on personal seals, and now Pokemon hanko stamps have officially been added to the list of permissible designs, as well. In other words, you can now take out a loan with the help of Charmander or sign the lease for your new apartment with the adorable Squirtle.

Which Pokemon character would you choose?

Which Pokemon character would you choose?

Personal seals with Pokemon characters on them are available from Hankos, a personal seal maker in Japan, that offers designs of the original 151 Pocket Monsters. The seals are made to order, combining the character of your choice with your legal name, and start at $18 depending on the material you choose. Every major bank and mail delivery service in the country has already legally recognized the use of these stamps, too, Sora News 24 reports.

So if you want to let people know that you’re a friendly, optimistic person, adding Pikachu to your stamp can help you with that. Sassy and love the spotlight? Choose Jigglypuff. Even if you think you’re too-cool for a personal seal and basically hate everything, there’s a Pokemon stamp for you, too. Try Mewtwo.


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