In today’s global marketplace, protecting your intellectual property is essential. If you plan to expand your business into China, you will need to register your trademark. The system in China is quite different from elsewhere, so you will need to tailor your approach differently. Trademark registration in China affords exclusive rights to use the trademark, and stop infringement, so it is a powerful tool.
The Chinese Trademark System
China’s trademark system is governed by the Trademark Law of 2019 (Amendment). If you want to register a trademark in China, it should be distinctive and easily identified and not conflict with any rights previously acquired by others. Your proposed trademark can include words, designs, letters, numbers, three-dimensional symbols, combinations of colours, and sounds. You can make a Chinese trademark registration search through the CNIPA’s official website, which houses a database of registered trademarks. This process can be difficult because of the language barrier and the complexities of the Chinese system. It is better to engage professionals to help you navigate this process. The China National Intellectual Property Administration (CNIPA) is responsible for reviewing trademark applications. A trademark in China is registered for a period of ten years and can be renewed for further periods of ten years. The cost of registering a trademark in China varies according to several factors, including the type of trademark needed and the goods or services it covers. If you believe your rights have been infringed, you can file a request for trademark protection.
Penalties for Trademark Infringement in China
Trademark infringement in China can carry severe penalties. These penalties can include confiscating what are considered illegal gains, exacting fines, confiscating counterfeit products, and compensation. Convicted trademark infringers can be sentenced to fixed terms of up to three years imprisonment under certain serious circumstances.
The Importance of Consulting a Chinese Lawyer
When registering a trademark in China, it benefits you to work with a Chinese lawyer who is experienced in these matters. A lawyer can offer valuable insights into how the Chinese legal system works and help you navigate the complexities of trademark registration. The process is difficult to navigate without a lawyer, especially as a foreigner. Ideally, you should engage a lawyer specialising in intellectual property law, arbitration and litigation, and company compliance.
The Importance of Engaging Professional Services
Engaging a team of experts to carry out your trademark registration in China offers untold advantages. Registering a China trademark is complicated due to international differences in legal systems and language barriers. However, if you enlist appropriate guidance and support, the process can be made straightforward. A team of experts well-versed in international trademark law can offer tailored, comprehensive services to cater to your specific needs. Once your China trademark has been registered, it is crucial to monitor its use and take action if there are any infringements. Your team of experts can help with this and provide ongoing support to make sure your trademark remains protected. Registering a China trademark is essential for protecting your IP and establishing your brand in the Chinese market.