Epidemic-related Trademark Applications are Rejected in China

It was to be expected: In China, in connection with the epidemic, countless individuals and companies are registering trademarks related to Corona. By 16 March 2020, the China National Intellectual Property Administration (CNIPA) had received more than 1,580 trademark applications in this regard, 328 of which were rejected.

CNIPA rejects trademark applications such as “火神山”, “雷神山” (names of hospitals) or “李文亮” (names of doctors) on the grounds that they are detrimental to socialist morals or good customs or have other adverse effects. They thus violate Article 10.1 (8) of the Chinese Trademark Law. Trademark applications such as “新冠消毒” (coronavirus disinfection) for products in class 5 or medical services in class 44 are refused on the basis of Article 10.1 (7) as deceptive and easily misleading with respect to the quality or origin of goods.

Due to the disclosure of application information and disciplinary measures, many applicants have now publicly apologized and 866 trademark registration applications related to the epidemic have been withdrawn on their own initiative. Currently, there are still more than 390 trade mark applications that have not yet gone through the statutory examination procedure. CNIPA has declared not to allow immoral trademark applications, to strictly control the trademark agencies, and to refer illegal cases to the local law enforcement agencies.

Source: China National Intellectual Property Administration / Picture: Pixabay

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