Client Alerts
May 05, 2014

If you do business in China, are you protected?

Stites & Harbison Client Alert, May 1, 2014

by Stites & Harbison, PLLC

See Chinese version below.

As a new trademark law goes into effect today in China, this is a good time to evaluate your level of protection. If you do business in China or plan to, there are a few things you should know. Even if your company name, slogan, logo, or product names are registered in the United States, you should separately register your trademarks in China.

Chinese trademark rights are given to the first company to register a mark, regardless of who used the mark first. There are many instances where Chinese companies have registered the marks of U.S. companies. If someone else registers your mark in China, you could be prevented from not only selling into China but also from exporting branded merchandise out of China if you manufacture there. One benefit of the new trademark law is that your contractual business partners like distributors or manufacturers are now prohibited from registering your mark out from under you. Even so, the prohibitions only protect the original brand owner in limited circumstances, and it may be costly to try to recover a hijacked brand.

Ultimately, the best defense is a good offense. If you want to do business in China, it is advisable to proactively register your trademarks. We can assist you in developing an international trademark strategy, global clearance searches, and registration.
Jennifer concentrates her practice on designing and implementing intellectual property protection plans, enforcing intellectual property assets, and drafting and negotiating software licenses and a variety of technology agreements. She prosecutes trademark and copyright registration applications and handles domain name and Internet content disputes, as well as negotiates and drafts contracts that implicate intellectual property or technology rights.



在中国,商标所有权被授予第一家注册商标的公司,无论这家公司是否在使用此商标。 有许多中国公司抢先注册美国公司商标的先例。如果别人在中国抢先注册了您的商标,您将不能把产品销售到中国,同时,很有能您在中国生产的产品也将不能被运出中国。今天生效的新商标法的一个好处是,您公司的签署过合同的业务合作伙伴,如分销商或制造商等将被禁止注册您的商标。即便如此,该禁令仅能在有限的情况下保护原有品牌的拥有者,而且,试图恢复被抢先注册品牌的所有权可能是非常昂贵的。
As a native Chinese speaker and writer, Connie effectively counsels both foreign and domestic clients. She concentrates her practice in the areas of intellectual property law and health care law. She is a registered U.S. patent attorney with medical and life science experience who focuses on patent prosecution and counseling in the areas of biotechnology, pharmaceuticals, medical device and life sciences.

Related Capabilities
Intellectual Property Litigation Intellectual Property & Technology Trademarks