CPA Successfully Protects Client's Interest in First-Instance Trademark Infringement Dispute 

Recently, China Patent Agent (H.K.) Ltd. (CPA) successfully represented a Japanese client in a first-instance trial before Beijing Chaoyang District People's Court. The court ruled in favour of the client that the registration and use of the client's trade name did not constitute infringement of the exclusive right of use of the plaintiff's registered trademark, and thereby the plaintiff's claim was dismissed.

The key issue of the case related to the dispute over right of trademark and that of trade name. The client's subsidiary in China has been using the registered trademark series in the English characters of "OCS". However, the Chinese transliteration of "OCS", namely, "欧西爱斯", was preemptively registered as a trademark by the plaintiff, who brought a lawsuit against the client of infringing its registered mark.

The case had been on precarious footing when it was transferred to CPA for handling in the midst of legal proceedings. Upon the entrustment, the CPA attorneys responsible for the case immediately studied the case and redeployed appropriate litigation strategies. They argued along the lines that the client's use of its enterprise name was legitimate and inconspicuous, and caused no confusion and misleading to the relevant public. Furthermore, they pointed to the plaintiff's non-use of the mark in suit, and its preemptive registration of the mark in bad faith.
While CPA's litigation strategies and defence tactics prove to be effective in protecting the client from the risk of infringement under the circumstances of preemptive trademark registration, the case shows that for foreign enterprises operating with foreign language trademarks in China, registration of the Chinese translation of the trademarks is also an issue worthy of their attention.