China question: How do I tackle IP infringement in China?

Apr 26, 2017
A company in China is selling a copied version of my registered product. How do I work with the authorities to put a stop to the counterfeiting activities? And, if the situation gets serious, what is the best approach to taking the infringing party to court? What are the benefits, risks and consequences of the two options?

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China adopts a two-track system for intellectual property (IP) rights protection: judicial and administrative. IP owners facing infringement may choose the appropriate option based on the specific circumstances or facts of the case to defend their lawful rights and interests.

The litigation perspective

The course of judicial IP protection is through litigation, a part of China’s civil law procedure in which the courts follow the “no-action-no-trial” doctrine. When a rights holder discovers an infringer, it prepares a bill of indictment, collects relevant evidence, and files an action with the court. The court would send the infringer these materials and order it to respond in writing before a certain deadline. Following this, the court would then start the procedure to exchange evidence and to formally hear the case. Both parties may fully express their opinions and views to enable the court to sufficiently understand the facts of the case and ultimately make a decision.

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