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Announcement of the Supreme People's Court of the People's Republic of China

The Provisions of the Supreme People's Court on Issues Concerning the Trial of Cases of Civil Disputes over Conflicts between Registered Trademark or Enterprise Name and Prior Right, which were adopted at the 1444th meeting of the judicial committee of the Supreme People's Court on February 18, 2008, are hereby promulgated, and shall go into effect as of March 1, 2008.

The Supreme People's Court
February 18, 2008
Provisions of the Supreme People's Court on Issues Concerning the Trial of Cases of Civil Disputes over Conflicts between Registered Trademark or Enterprise Name and Prior Right

(Fa Shi [2008] No.3, adopted at the 1444th meeting of the judicial committee of the Supreme People's Court on February 18, 2008)

With a view to correctly trying cases of civil disputes over conflicts between registered trademark or enterprise name and the prior right, these Provisions are formulated according to the provisions of relevant laws, such as the Civil Procedure Law of the People's Republic of China, the General Principles of the Civil Law of the People's Republic of China, the Trademark Law of the People's Republic of China and the Anti-unfair Competition Law of the People's Republic of China, and in light of the trial practice experience.

Article 1
Where a plaintiff files a lawsuit on the ground that the character or graphic used in the registered trademark of other party infringes upon its/his copyright, patent right for a design, right to enterprise name or other prior rights, which conforms to the provision of Article 108 of the Civil Procedure Law, the people's court shall accept the lawsuit.

If the lawsuit is filed on the ground that a registered trademark used by other party on approved commodities is identical or similar to the prior registered trademark of the plaintiff, the people's court shall, according to the provision of Article 111 (3) of the Civil Procedure Law, notify the plaintiff to apply with the competent organ for settling the issue. However, in case the lawsuit is filed on the ground that a registered trademark used by other party beyond the approved scope of commodities or by changing the dominant features of the trademark, splitting it or combining it with others is identical or similar to the registered trademark of the plaintiff, the people's court shall accept it.

Article 2
Where a plaintiff files a lawsuit on the ground that the enterprise name of other party is identical or similar to its/his prior registered enterprise name resulting that it is easy for the public to become confused about the source of its/his commodity and violating the provision of Article 5 (3) of the Anti-unfair Competition Law, which conforms to the provision of Article 108 of the Civil Procedure Law, the people's court shall accept the lawsuit.
Article 3
The people's court shall, in light of the plaintiff's litigation claims and the nature of the civil legal relationship of the dispute, determine the cause of the case of civil dispute over the conflict between registered trademark or enterprise name and prior right and apply corresponding laws, in accordance with the Provisions on the Cause of Action of Civil Cases (for Trial Implementation).
Article 4
Where the enterprise name of the defendant infringes upon the right to the exclusive use of a trademark or constitutes unfair competition, the people's court may, in light of the litigation claims of the plaintiff and the specific situation of the case, order the defendant to stop or regularize the use of the enterprise name and assume corresponding civil liabilities.