Welcome to the LEHMAN, LEE & XU Firm’s “China Patents in the News” newsletter, June 4, 2013 edition. 

In this edition of our “China Patents” news letter we focus on those of you who may wish to file a patent in China and go into business there.  If you are even considering this possibility TALK TO AN EXPERT ON CHINSE PATENT LAW FIRST!!  If you do not know what you are doing, do not pass go, do not collect 200 RMB and do not go to China with your hat in hand.  Come talk to us, we will be happy to help you!

You may find our article about patents and patent law in China below.  Please stay tuned as always for future editions. 

Best Regards,
Lex Smith
Foreign Legal Consultant

Lehman, Lee & Xu - China Patents in the news

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In the News

IP Protection in China: How to Get a Patent

In China, the State Patent Office grant patent rights for inventions that conform to the Chinese Patent Law. The legal principal of patent registration in China is "First to file", which means whoever applies for a patent first, will obtain the right. Anyone else, does not have patent rights in China. The registration procedure is rather involved. To register a patent, I advise that you engage an experienced patent attorney in China.

Three types of patents

1. Invention Patent

According to Chapter 1, Article 2 of the Detailed Rules for the Implementation of the Patent Law of the PRC, invention is any new technical innovation relating to a product or a method.

2. Utility Model Patent

According to Chapter 1, Article 2 of the Detailed Rules for the Implementation of the Patent Law of the PRC, utility model means any new solutions relating to a product's shape, structure, or its combination and which is practical.

3. Design Patent

According to Chapter 1, Article 2 of the Detailed Rules for the Implementation of the Patent Law of the PRC, design patent is any new design of a product's shape, pattern, color or its combination, which creates an aesthetic feeling and is fit for industrial application.

Terms of your patent rights

According to the Chapter 5, Article 45 of the Patent Law of PRC, the duration of the invention patent is 20 years from the filing date. The duration of the utility model patent is 10 years from the filing date. The duration of the design patent is 10 years from the filing date.

Registering your patent in China

According to Patent Law in PRC, a foreigner or a foreign company is defined as a person or company with no regular residence or place business in China. A foreigner may not file a patent and instead must appoint a patent agency certified by the Chinese Government to register a patent in China.

For each application of patent, an application form should be submitted to State Intellectual Property Office (SIPO), along with 1 copy of the application form. A letter of authorization should also be submitted, if you register your patent by a patent agent.

Enforcing your patent rights in China

There are two ways to enforce your patent rights in China if your patent rights are being infringed. One is judicial enforcement--filing a claim in court directly. The second is administrative enforcement by the local intellectual property office (IPO). You may request the local IPO to handle the matter. The IPO has the power to stop the acts of infringement and award the compensations for your losses. Generally, the advantages of administrative enforcement are that is less expensive and quicker than judicial enforcement. It is limited to types of cases in which infringement is easier to proof. However, for the complicated case, filing a claim in court is a better choice. The court can award damages to defendant which administrative enforcement cannot. The statute of limitation for filing a suit concerning the infringement of a patent right is two years, starting from the day on which the rights owner knew or should have known of the infringement.


Edward Lehman雷曼法学博士
Managing Director 董事长

LEHMAN, LEE & XU China Lawyers
Founder of LehmanBrown International Accountants

Lehman, Lee & Xu is a top-tier Chinese law firm specializing in corporate, commercial, intellectual property, and labor and employment matters. For further information on any issue discussed in this edition of China Patents In The News or for all other enquiries, please e-mail us at mail@lehmanlaw.com or visit our website at www.lehmanlaw.com.

© Lehman, Lee & Xu 2013.
This document has been created for educational purposes for clients, potential clients and referrers of services to Lehman, Lee & Xu, and to alert readers to the services provided by Lehman, Lee & Xu. It is not intended to serve as definitive professional or legal advice, and should not be relied upon as such. Lehman, Lee & Xu does not endorse any personal opinions which may be contained herein.
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