China’s SPC published the Top 10 Intellectual Property Cases and Top 50 Typical Intellectual Property Cases in 2021

China's SPC published the Top 10 Intellectual Property Cases and Top 50 Typical Intellectual Property Cases in 2021

China’s SPC published the Top 10 Intellectual Property Cases and Top 50 Typical Intellectual Property Cases in 2021

The SPC published the top 10 IP cases in Chinese courts 2021 on April 21, 2022, as well as 50 typical IP cases. Patent infringement, trademark infringement, copyright infringement, computer software copyright infringement, new plant variety infringement, unfair competition, infringement of technical secrets, monopoly, and other intellectual property-related issues are all addressed in these cases, which cover all areas of intellectual property law. The SPC hoped to clarify trial standards and provide guidance for future trial practice by publishing these standard precedents.

The following are the aspects of the trial rules established by the Top 10 IP cases:

1. Examining the defense of trademark prior use

The goal of the prior use right defense system is to protect good faith in the best past users’ rights to continue to use their business marks of particular influence within the original scope, which is an important expression of the principle of good faith in trademark law.

2. Estimation of damages for trade secret violation

To increase the compensation of infringement and adequately protect the advanced technologies of major industries, various factors such as the commercial value of the technical secret involved, the severity of the infringement circumstances, and the defendant’s refusal/acceptance to enforce the people’s court’s ruling on behavior preservation should all be taken into account when determining the number of damages for trade secret infringement.

3. Requirements for applying for horizontal monopoly exemptions

Horizontal monopoly agreements that contravene the Anti-Monopoly Law should be invalidated, and this includes conditions that are intimately tied to the horizontal monopoly agreements and have no independent existence, as well as terms that serve the enforcement of the horizontal monopoly agreements.

4. Determination of new plant variety violation

Infringing on new plant variety rights is defined as organizing the sale of unauthorized seeds of new plant varieties through an internet information platform and concealing the sale under the names of “farmers,” “large family farms,” or other business entities, and punitive damages can be applied according to law.

5. The burden of proof in patent infringement cases 

The party who transfers or destroys pre-litigation maintained evidence (key evidence) bears the legal consequences of obscuring evidence preservation, which has important practical value for appropriately significantly reducing the burden of proof on right holders in accordance with law and guiding the parties concerned to provide evidence initiatively, proactively, comprehensively, and honestly.

6. Determination of acrobatic works’ copyright infringement

Copyright ownership can be established using the appropriate contract, and copyright infringement occur when the original expressive component of a work is substantially similar to that of a copyrighted work.

7. Determination of unfair click farming competition

Click farming for profit and assisting business operators in fraudulent promotional publicity generates inaccurate data on the business platform, which impacts the credit evaluation system, and so breaches the principles of fairness, good faith, and business ethics and constitutes unfair competition.

A novel sort of lawsuit regarding copyright protection of open source software, as well as a criminal case involving copyright infringement, are among the top ten cases. These cases completely show the SPC’s determination to severely punish infringements and preserve and promote fair competition in the market, as well as the SPC’s ongoing examination of new situations and difficulties in the intellectual property protection process in Chinese judicial practice.

***Other Articles***

– You could see How To Register Trademark in China here.

– You could visit here to see Procedure of Trademark in China.

– You could visit here to check Required documents of filing trademark in China.

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