Trademarks are intangible assets but are considered extremely important and are protected by intellectual property rights.
According to the People’s Republic of China Trademark Law (2019 amendment), a trademark is used to distinguish goods and services of different sources, this commercial signs can constitute of text, graphics, letters, numbers, three-dimensional marks, color combinations and sound, as well as a combinations of these elements.
Patents are a form of intellectual property. A patent is a set of exclusive rights for a limited period in exchange for detailed public disclosure of inventions-creations. According to the Patent Law of the People’s Republic of China (hereinafter the “Patent Law”), “inventions-creations” mean inventions, utility models and designs. Among the three kinds of patents, invention patents are granted after substantive examination, with a term of 20 years, and utility model and design patents are granted just after preliminary examination, with a term of 10 years, all terms calculated from the filing date.
Proof of prior copyright ownership for logos and stylized version of word marks can come in very handy, both in oppositions against infringing trademarks and against counterfeits bearing those marks – particularly where the rights holder has a registration for the logo/stylized mark. Although copyright is typically protected immediately upon the work’s creation, it is strongly recommended that rights holders obtain a Chinese copyright registration certificate for relevant works.
HongFangLaw handles lawsuits relating to client’s IPR, including but not limited to civil lawsuit for claims on IPR infringement, unfair competition, DNS disputes, licensing contract and business reputation violation, the administrative lawsuit relating to disputes raised during IPR granting and confirmation, administrative enforcement, and also the criminal prosecution, which we represent the brand owners that being damaged by counterfeiters and infringers.
Brand owners would need to license their legal rights to other cooperating entities, affiliated companies, etc., to authorize these parties to legally utilize these rights within the defined scope. The most common licensing matters relating to intellectual property rights include the trademark licensing, copyright licensing and patent licensing. For the sake of protecting the licensee’s interest during their commercial activity, it is highly recommended to not only enact a proper licensing agreement with rights owner, but also have the licensing recorded upon the requirement by relevant organizations, apart from some compulsory recordation, since in some situation.
Legal Risk Assessment
Legal risk assessment is highly recommended and necessary for any situation, and it would provide a more comprehensive picture for client to understand the pros and cons when evaluating whether to take any action and which action to take in an efficient way. There usually have a couple of factors to influence the risk assessment process, such as the stability of legal rights owned by both clients and the counterparts, the evidences and information obtained on hands to show the status, and the possible actions to take and their outcome towards the each party.
Contracts are the most popular documents during commercial activities, and it could help all involved parties to make clear their requirements, to define the terms correctly, to set solutions for all possible situations, and to bind all entities with the legitimate means. A comprehensive contract embedded with strict terms and conditions could avoid some unnecessary […]
Customs recordation and border protection
Border Protection is an important measure taken by Customs for intellectual property rights protection. Pursuant to the Regulations of the People’s Republic of China Regarding Customs Protection of Intellectual Property Rights (“Customs Intellectual Property Protection Regulations”), the Customs can implement protection measures to stop exporting or importing products infringing right holder’s exclusive trademark rights, copyrights and the rights related thereto, patent rights protected by PRC laws and administrative regulations.
The growing business demand globally would increase the risk of information asymmetry for all entities involved in the business activity, and in order to obtain as much information about the counterparts as possible from a third party for a better risk control management, due diligence investigation would be one of the options that business entity should consider in a way of cost-efficiency and time-efficiency, before the substantial business investment, and it would be also helpful for the business entity to decide the negotiation strategy.
We have handled thousands of cases for our clients, litigation and non-litigation business, contentious and non-contentious matters, and we always keep our commitment to our clients to maximize their interest by serving them in below ways:
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