- Posted by lawyeradmin
- On July 10, 2017
The increase in globalization has given rise to new opportunities for many industrious business owners looking to expand their business into new international markets. For business owners, each new market comes with a renewed opportunity to continue growing in a previously untapped arena.
As advantageous as expanding into international markets can be for business owners, doing so comes with a set of inherent risks that many are not prepared to take on.
Protecting Your IP and Patent Abroad…
It is widely known within the United States, that patents, trademarks and copyrights are used to discourage illegal copying, infringement, and counterfeiting. While cases that involve infringement have a tendency to lead to lengthy court cases, for the most part the basic protection provided by strong intellectual property ensures a company’s investments in research and development, branding, and other assets are safe.
But for many business owners entering the international market for the first time, the intricacies of ensuring your patent and intellectual property are protected across national borders can be difficult to take on without first consulting legal representation.
The very first point of difference…
The main issue in protecting your patent within the United States and preventing infringement abroad is that the international community does not recognize patents filed within the United States, with a few exceptions.
This means that a business owner is required to file a separate copyright or patent claim within the country they wish to expand into, otherwise they risk opening themselves up to potential cases of infringement without any legal protections. Several international treaties signed amongst most countries in the world have made it easier to file patents and register intellectual property for foreign nationals entering international markets.
Filing a Patent in China and Protecting Your IP from Infringement…
For those wishing to enter one of the strongest global economies in the world and expand business into China’s vast markets, it is necessary to file an application for a patent with China’s State Intellectual Property Office, or SIPO. Before an application can be filed in China, however, United States Citizens must file for a patent with the United States Patent & Trademark Office. In addition, as with the United States, there are different types of patents in China. In particular, applications for Chinese patents fall into three distinct categories: 1) invention patents, 2) utility model patents, and 3) design patents. It is essential to know and understand the basics of a particular category a patent will fall under before filing as each comes with a set of procedures used to determine legitimacy of an application.
Those filing an application for an invention patent have to be certain that their product has not been introduced to public, through distribution or even public press release statements, to ensure a successful application.
Protecting your patent in China…
If a case of infringement does arise, business owners who have received a patent for their intellectual property have two routes for recourse available to themselves, taking administrative actions within SIPO or pursuing legal actions within the Chinese legal system.
Language barriers, distance, and financial burden can often make it very difficult for business owners to properly defend their IP and patents beyond their own national borders. However, working with the proper law firm can help you overcome all of those difficulties.
If you would like to ensure your patent and IP are protected before stepping into the Chinese market, contact Depeng (Edward) Bi of the Law Offices of Konrad Sherinian, LLC to schedule a professional consultation. Edward is a Chinese native with extensive contacts within China. He will work with you to ensure that your intellectual property is protected effectively and economically.