Recently, China National Intellectual Property Administration (CNIPA) issued the Notice on Strengthening the Relevant Work on the Protection of Well-Known Trademarks while Handling Trademark Violations. The Notice proposed that efforts should be made to thoroughly implement the decision-making arrangements of the Party Central Committee and the State Council on rigid IP protection, to give full play to the important role of well-known trademark protection in accelerating the construction of IP powerhouse and creating a sound business environment and clarified the specific requirements for further strengthening the investigation and protection of well-known trademarks in trademark violation cases.
The Notice lays out the related work on further strengthening protection of well-known trademarks while investigating and handling trademark violation cases from three aspects: namely, investigating and handling the cases related to well-known trademarks in strict accordance with the statutory authority and time limit, effectively standardizing the application and utilization of well-known trademarks and highlighting the key points to effectively strengthen the protection of well-known trademarks. The Notice has further strengthened investigation of the protection of well-known trademarks in trademark violation cases particularly in standardizing the determination, application and use of well-known trademarks that have received much attention from all walks of life.The Notice provided in three aspects including strengthening auditing and guidance and regulating according to law, requiring all levels of IP authorities to guide enterprises to correctly understand the recognition and protection system of well-known trademarks. The Notice proposes that it is necessary to correctly distinguish the boundaries between the proper use of "well-known Trademarks" and the illegal use of the words and clarified that an enterprise can make factual statements on the record of trademark protection of well-known trademarks in its business activities. If the enterprise intends to downplay the legal status of recognition and protection of well-known trademarks and uses the words "well-known trademarks" as an honorary title in a prominent manner to promote the enterprise or promote the goods or services run by the enterprise, it will be investigated and dealt with in accordance with the relevant provisions of the Trademark Law.
Strengthening investigation and protection of well-known trademarks in trademark violation cases is of vital importance to the parties as well as an important duty of CNIPA and the local IP administration departments at all levels. CNIPA will incorporate protection of well-known trademarks into its annual performance appraisal of IP protection and conduct supervision and guidance in due course. In the next step, CNIPA will deploy local intellectual property administrative departments to focus on well-known trademark protection, strengthen trademark protection, effectively protect the legitimate rights and interests of relevant right holders, improve administrative efficiency and optimize the business environment, respond to the deployments of the Party Central Committee and the State Council, providing strong support for accelerating the construction of an IP powerhouse and creating a good business environment.
Source: China IP News