Trademark

Summary
  1. Legislation
    Trademark protection in China is governed under the Trademark Law of the People’s Republic of China.
  2. Definition
    A trademark refers to a sign that serves a specific and primary purpose of identifying the goods or services of a producer.
  3. Criteria
    A trademark shall take the following factors:

      1. Reputation of the mark to the public
      2. Time for continues use of the mark
      3. Consecutive time, extent and geographical area of advertisement of the mark
      4. Records of protection of the mark as a well-known mark
      5. Any other factors relevant to the reputation of the mark

    The mark however cannot be:

        Those identical or similar to that of the State’s name, national flag, national emblem, military flag or decorations of the People’s Republic of China
      1. Those identical or similar to that of the State’s name, national flag, national emblem, military flag of a foreign country
      2. Those identical or similar to that of the State’s name, national flag, national emblem, military flag of international inter-govermental organization
      3. Those marks similar to official signs or hallmarks
      4. Those identical in symbol or name of the Red Cross or the Red Crescent
      5. Those having the nature of discrimination against any nationality
      6. Those having the nature of exaggeration and fraud in advertising goods
      7. Detrimental to socialist morals or customs or having unhealthy influences
  4. Membership
    √ Paris Convention for the Protection of Industrial Property
    √ Madrid Protocol
    China is party to the Paris Convention for the Protection of Industrial Property. This provides that an applicant from any State party to the treaty shall be able to use its first filing date as the effective filing date in another State. Provided that the subsequent application is submitted within six (6) months
    China is also a Contracting Party of the Madrid Protocol which allows for a single application, called the ‘international application’ to be filed to the, The International Bureau of the World Intellectual Property organization. This allows for the mark to seek protection in member countries. However, this does not grant an internationally recognize trademark as that does not exist. It merely provides a mean for member countries to apply their respective laws to consider if the mark may be protected.Paris Convention for the Protection of Industrial Property
    Madrid Protocol
    China is party to the Paris Convention for the Protection of Industrial Property. This provides that an applicant from any State party to the treaty shall be able to use its first filing date as the effective filing date in another State. Provided that the subsequent application is submitted within six (6) months
    China is also a Contracting Party of the Madrid Protocol which allows for a single application, called the ‘international application’ to be filed to the, The International Bureau of the World Intellectual Property organization. This allows for the mark to seek protection in member countries. However, this does not grant an internationally recognize trademark as that does not exist. It merely provides a mean for member countries to apply their respective laws to consider if the mark may be protected.
  5. Rule of Priority
    China practices a ‘First-to-file’ system, which recognizes the first person to file the mark which is not necessarily the first inventor
  6. Duration and Renewal
    A trademark once approved will be valid for 10 years from the date of approval of the registration
    A trademark can be renewed towards the end of its validity
Procedure/Timeline
ChinaTM

  1. Application
    An application can be with the relevant information and documents to the China Trade Mark Office (CTMO)
  2. Preliminary Examination
    An examination will be done once a complete explanation has been submitted. This will consider if the application fulfills the relevant provisions of the Law.
    Should any issue arise, the applicant will be informed and be required to make the necessary amendments.
  3. Publication
    Once the application has been preliminary approved, the application will be published in the Gazette.
    Within 3 months from the date of publication, any individual can file an opposition against the trademark. Should there be no opposition filed within the time period, the application will be granted.
  4. Opposition
    Should an opposition be filed against the trademark, the Trademark Office shall hear both the opponent and the supplicant state facts and grounds on the opposition. The Office will then look make the necessary investigation and verification and make a decision as the validity of the mark
  5. Grant
    Once the application has passed its publication period with no opposition, the application will be granted with a certificate of trademark registration and the mark will be published.
Requirements/ Documents
The following information/documents required for a trademark application in China.

  1. Applicants name and address
  2. Designers name and address
  3. Title of design
  4. List of Goods and Services
  5. Drawings
  6. The Power of Attorney
Documents
Downloadable Forms
Agents
Fee

Patent

Summary
  1. Legislation
    Patents in China is governed by the Patent law of the People’s Republic of China
  2. Definition
    An invention patent refers to the a new technical solutions for a product, a process or the improvement thereof
  3. Criteria
    The Invention must be:

      1. Novel
      2. Industrial Applicability
      3. Specific disclosure requirements
      4. Not known to the public
      5. Inventiveness

    The invention cannot be:

      1. Contrary to the laws of the state
      2. Contrary to the social morality
      3. Detrimental to public interest
      4. Object which has no fixed shape, pattern or color
      5. Any component part of the product which cannot be separated or sold/used separately
      6. Any design which has several components
      7. Any design which cannot be perceived by the visual sense or the shape, patter or color
      8. Any work which belongs wholly to the field of fine arts
      9. Any design which consist of only geometric shapes or patterns
      10. Sound and meanings of the words and numbers
  4. Membership
    √ Paris Convention for the Protection of Industrial Property
    √ Patent Cooperation Treaty (PCT)
    China is party to the Paris Convention for the Protection of Industrial Property. This provides that an applicant from any State party to the treaty shall be able to use its first filing date as the effective filing date in another State. Provided that the subsequent application is submitted within twelve (12) months.
    Furthermore, China is a party in the Patent Cooperation Treaty which provides a unified procedure in filing patent application which can be filed to the World International Property Organization. The treaty allows for the applicant to extend its rights in patent application to other member country of the treaty. It is important to note that the an application under the PCT does not grant an international patent as that does not exist.
  5. Rule of Priority
    China practices a ‘First-to-file’ system, which recognizes the first person to file the invention which is not necessarily the first inventor
  6. Duration and Renewal
    An invention patent once granted is valid for 20 years with payment of annuity fees
Procedure/Timeline
China Patent

  1. Application
    An application for a patent can be made to the State Intellectual Property Office P.R.C. The application must be in written form or electronic
  2. Preliminary Examination
    A preliminary examination examines the application to determine if the meets the requirements of the Law, in respect to the documents and information.
    The application will be published within 18 months from the date of application.
  3. Substantive Examination
    A substantive examination is to be requested, the applicant then has to submit the reference material. Failure to request for a substantive examination will deem the the application withdrawn.
    During the examination, should there have been any issues with the application which do not conform to the legislation, the applicant will be informed and require the applicant to submit certain documents or information. Failure to respond to the necessary requirements, the application will be deemed withdrawn
    After the applicant has responded to the issues either by stating his opinions or making amendments, should the application still be deemed to not comply with the provisions of the legislation, the application will be rejected completely
  4. Publication
    The application shall be published within 18 months from the date of application.
  5. Grant
    If the application has no reason for rejection, the patent office will make a decision to grant the patent. The office will also issue a patent certificate and the date of receipt
Requirements/ Documents
The following information/documents are needed for a patent application in China

  1. Applicant’s details
  2. Inventors’ details
  3. Power of Attorney
  4. Request for examination
  5. Claim
  6. Description
  7. Drawings

PCT National Phase Application
The following information/documents together with the filing fee are required to be submitting a non-provisional utility provisional application:

  1. Receipt from the International Bureau of copies of international application with any amendments to the claims, international search reports, and international preliminary examination reports may be accepted
  2. Payment of national fee
  3. Furnishing of a translation if the international application was filed in any other language other than English
  4. A copy of international application, except where not required by that Office (if necessary)
  5. Amendments, if any, to the claims in the international application. (Unless such amendments have been informed to the Patent and Trademark Office by the International Bureau, where a translation in English is provided should the amendments be made in another language)
  6. An oath or declaration of the inventor
  7. A translation into the English Language of any annexes to the international preliminary report. (If the annexes were made in another language)
Documents
Downloadable Forms
Agents
Fee

Utility Model

Summary
  1. Legislation
    Utility Model in China is governed by the Patent law of the People’s Republic of China
  2. Definition
    A utility model refers to the new technical solutions proposed for a product a process or the improvement thereof
  3. Criteria
    The Utility Model must be:

      1. novel
      2. Industrial Applicability
      3. Specific disclosure requirements
      4. Not known to the public

    The Utility Model cannot be:

      1. Contrary to the laws of the state
      2. Contrary to the social morality
      3. Detrimental to public interest
      4. Object which has no fixed shape, pattern or color
      5. Any component part of the product which cannot be separated or sold/used separately
      6. Any design which has several components
      7. Any design which cannot be perceived by the visual sense or the shape, patter or color
      8. Any work which belongs wholly to the field of fine arts
      9. Any design which consist of only geometric shapes or patterns
      10. Sound and meanings of the words and numbers
  4. Membership
    √ Paris Convention for the Protection of Industrial Property
    √ Patent Cooperation Treaty (PCT)
    China is party to the Paris Convention for the Protection of Industrial Property. This provides that an applicant from any State party to the treaty shall be able to use its first filing date as the effective filing date in another State. Provided that the subsequent application is submitted within twelve (12) months.
    Furthermore, China is a party in the Patent Cooperation Treaty which provides a unified procedure in filing patent application which can be filed to the World International Property Organization. The treaty allows for the applicant to extend its rights in patent application to other member country of the treaty. It is important to note that the an application under the PCT does not grant an international patent as that does not exist.
  5. Rule of Priority
    China practices a ‘First-to-file’ system, which recognizes the first person to file the utility model which is not necessarily the first inventor
  6. Duration and Renewal
    A utility model once granted is valid for 20 years with payment of annuity fees
Procedure/Timeline
  1. Application
    A written request can be submitted to the State Intellectual Property Office of the P.R.C. together with the relevant documents
  2. Examination
    Once the application has been receives, the application will undergo a preliminary examination to ensure that the application meet s the requirements laid down by the law.
  3. Publication
    The application shall be published within 18 months from the date of application.
  4. Grant
    If the application has no reason for rejection, the patent office will make a decision to grant the patent. The office will also issue a patent certificate and the date of receipt
Requirements/ Documents
The following information/documents are needed for a patent application in China

  1. Applicant’s details
  2. Inventors’ details
  3. Power of Attorney
  4. Request for examination
  5. Claim
  6. Description
  7. Drawings

Industrial Design

Summary
  1. Legislation
    Industrial design in China is governed by the Patent law of the People’s Republic of China
  2. Definition
    Design according to the legislation is defined as a new design of shape, patter, or the combination thereof. It also covers shape and pattern which have an aesthetic appeal and are fit for industrial application
  3. Criteria
    The design must be

      1. New
      2. Non-obvious

    It however cannot be:

      1. Contrary to the laws of the state
      2. Contrary to the social morality
      3. Detrimental to public interest
      4. Object which has no fixed shape, pattern or color
      5. Any component part of the product which cannot be separated or sold/used separately
      6. Any design which has several components
      7. Any design which cannot be perceived by the visual sense or the shape, patter or color
      8. Any work which belongs wholly to the field of fine arts
      9. Any design which consist of only geometric shapes or patterns
      10. Sound and meanings of the words and numbers
  4. Membership
    √ Paris Convention for the Protection of Industrial Property
    China is party to the Paris Convention for the Protection of Industrial Property. This provides that an applicant from any State party to the treaty shall be able to use its first filing date as the effective filing date in another State. Provided that the subsequent application is submitted within six(6) months.
  5. Rule of Priority
    China practices a ‘First-to-file’ system, which recognizes the first person to file the design which is not necessarily the first inventor
  6. Duration and Renewal
    An industrial design once approved last for a term of 10 years from the date of filing
Procedure/Timeline
ChinaID

  1. Application
    A written request can be submitted to the State Intellectual Property Office of the P.R.C. together with the relevant documents
  2. Examination
    Once the application has been receives, the application will undergo a preliminary examination to ensure that the application meet s the requirements laid down by the law.
  3. Publication
    The application shall be published within 18 months from the date of application.
  4. Grant
    If the application has no reason for rejection, the patent office will make a decision to grant the patent. The office will also issue a patent certificate and the date of receipt
Requirements/ Documents
The following information/documents are required for an industrial design application in China

  1. Application and designers name and address
  2. Title of the design
  3. Request
  4. Drawing or photographs
  5. Brief Explanation
  6. Other relevant documents
  7. Power of Attorney
Documents
Downloadable Forms
Agents
Fee