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Recently, there has been a growing question from customers as to what options they have for registering a trademark in China if such a trademark is similar or similar to another.

It will be relatively inexpensive to register a trademark in China, but this option is possible only if the registration goes smoothly from the application stage to the stage of issuance of the TM registration certificate.

Why protect TM

Every trademark owner pursues a variety of goals when starting a business in China. There are three main points:

  • The company wants to register a trademark in China in order to create and obtain local domain name;
  • TM registration in China allows to protect the goods and services from actions of competitors. If you have a successful business, but you neglected your brand registration work, then any entrepreneur can take over your brand. Then you have to prove the affiliation of the brand in court;
  • A registered trademark is required to enter the international level. Otherwise, you will not be able to work in other states.

Protection allows you to completely protect yourself from competitors and prohibit them from producing goods under your brand. If you find that somewhere produces goods under your trademark, you can sue and win it without much trouble. There is currently an international classifier that includes 45 types of various brands. Each class displays a specific sector of industry, production, services and so on.

In case of refusal

All previous trademarks filed and still pending or registered constitute an obstacle to the registration of a new identical or similar trademark for similar goods/services.

Approximately 9 months after the trademark registration application, you may receive a notification from the Chinese Trademark Office stating that the application has not passed the examination because similar marks have been found before and therefore your application may be rejected. 

In this case, you have several options:

  • Filing an appeal with the Trademark Review and Evaluation Board in China "TRAB";
  • Filing a lawsuit against the Beijing IP against the rejection of the TRAB;
  • Filing an objection to an application that prevents the registration of your TM;
  • Filing an application for invalidation of a registered TM that prevents the registration of your application;
  • File a revocation of non-use for a trademark that blocks our application (if that trademark has been registered for more than three years).

Conclusion

Sometimes an entrepreneur can be denied registration of a trademark in China, because the international nomenclature is so huge that similarities are quite common. Therefore, before developing your own trademark, you need to responsibly and creatively approach the creation of a sketch, if the TM is an image.

IQ Decision UK experts suggest registering a trademark in China as soon as possible to avoid registering similar trademarks by others.