This Note examines the effect that China’s 2013 Trademark Law amendments have had on curtailing the trademark squatting problem that plagues foreign corporations and individuals attempting to register a trademark in China. Trademarks play a crucial role in establishing brand recognition in an individual or a company’s product. Given China’s large and growing population of potential consumers, obtaining a Chinese trademark is especially valuable. Chinese trademark squatters, however, make this difficult for foreign corporations and individuals by filing for registration in China once the mark gains popularity, not intending to use the trademark in commerce, but to hold it as ransom until a fee is paid. This Note will provide a historical overview of China’s Trademark Law, discussing past amendments leading up to China’s 2013 amendments, which took effect on May 1, 2014. Then, this Note will acknowledge the positive effects of China’s 2013 amendments, specifically Article 7’s good faith principle, while arguing that more reform is needed to clarify what constitutes good faith and equalize the appeals process under Article 35, which grants legal rights in a trademark before the appeals process is complete. Finally, this Note will propose adopting the definition and examples of bad faith from Australia’s Trade Mark Amendment Act, while detailing how China can create transparency and grant more rights to foreign corporations and individuals during the appeals process.
Two Steps Forward, One Step Back: A Need for China to Further Amend its 2013 Trademark Law in Order to Prevent Trademark Squatting,
42 Brook. J. Int'l L.
Available at: https://brooklynworks.brooklaw.edu/bjil/vol42/iss2/10