This is to advise that the recent amendments to the IP law were approved by the National People’s Congress on 30 August 2013 and will be effective as of 1 May 2014.
The main aspects of the changes are:
- Sound marks can be registered now;
- Multiple-class application is possible;
- Electronic filing will be applied;
- The time frame has been defined for processing the examination of new applications, oppositions, cancellation actions, etc;
- Improvement to the opposition system, including the limitation and definition of the opposition and grounds for filing opposition;
- A trademark renewal application can be filed within 12 months prior to the expiration of its validity term, which is twice the length of time of the current practice of 6 months;
- The introduction of new Unfair Competition Act;
- Introducing the principle of well-known trademark recognition;
- Enhancing the protection of the exclusive right to use a trademark;
- Reinforcing the intensity of countermeasures against preemptive trademark registration, and
- Regularising the behavior of trademark agencies by imposing penalties on such agencies who commit any act considered by the administrative authority for industry and commerce to be done on bad faith or construed unfair competition.
For more clarifications, please contact [email protected].