Supreme Court Tightens IP Protection


Recently, the Supreme People's Court issued the Opinions on Comprehensively Strengthening Judicial Protection of Intellectual Property Rights (the "Opinions"), ordering courts at all levels to fully recognize the significance of comprehensively strengthening judicial protection of IPRs and correctly comprehend the starting point and target of the overall situation of the judicial protection of IPRs, in order to provide strong judicial services and guarantee for building an innovative country, building a modern socialist country and pushing on with modernization of the country's governing system and capacities. This is a major action of the Supreme People's Court to thoroughly implement the Opinions of the General Office of the CPC Central Committee and the General Office of the State Council on Strengthening the Protection of Intellectual Property Rights.

Based on the actual situation of IP trials, the Opinions focuses on the key points and difficulties in judicial protection of IPRs and puts forward a series of measures to reduce the cost of obligees in litigations to safeguard their rights and interests, shorten the litigation period, increase compensation for damages and alleviate the difficulties of parties concerned in presenting evidence, in order to practically strengthen the actual effect of judicial protection.

The Opinions requires improving the rules for the distribution of evidential burden, the system of obstacle removal for evidence presentation and the system of witness appearing in court to testify, expanding the channels for collecting electronic data evidence, legally supporting the application of parties concerned for perpetuation of evidence and for investigation and evidence collection, alleviating the burden of parties concerned in presenting evidence; deepening reform of the way of IP judgment, strictly and legally controlling the review standards for entrusted identification, abatement of action and remand for retrial to reduce unnecessary waste of time; making full use of third-party data to legally ascertain infringement cases; increasing compensation for serious infringement of IPRs, legally confiscating and disposing fake or pirated commodities and the materials and tools mainly used for infringement, in order to effectively stop recurrence of infringement of IPRs.

The Opinions lays emphasis on legally curbing false litigations and strengthening system and mechanism construction to improve the overall efficiency of judicial protection; strengthening communication and coordination with relevant departments to form resultant force for IP protection; and strengthening infrastructure for judicial work to provide stronger support for comprehensively strengthening judicial protection of IPRs. (Translated from CNIPA Website Chinese Version)