Could an Additional Proof be Admitted in the TRAB’s Trademark Review?

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(By Luo Yanjie) Abstract: The general principle of copyright authorship centers on the signature in the work pursuant to the Copyright Law. The Trademark Review and Adjudication Board shall determine the proof that provided by the administrative counterparty with strict and cautious attitude and consider the changes together with the combination of legal facts and objective conditions so as to make a ruling that protects the right holders’ legitimate rights and interests.

The people’s court shall have the right to revoke the ruling made by the Trademark Review and Adjudication Board (the “TRAB”) and order the TRAB to remake a ruling. For how the TRAB deal with the additional evidences provided by the administrative counterparty during the period of re-ruling, there are no clear laws and regulations. In today’s post, we would like to introduce a typical case with readers.

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How A.O.SMITH Corporation Protects Its Interests against the Free Rider AOSIMIHE?

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(By Luo Yanjie) Trademark infringement via the unauthorized use of an enterprise’s name is a common phenomenon in China. Since the requirements for registering a company in Hong Kong are well known for being comparatively lax, many companies attempt to register well-known trademarks as an enterprise name in Hong Kong, and then run a business in Mainland China using this registered name, effectively fulfilling its role as a “free-rider” of another’s well known trademark.

 The A.O.SMITH Corporation was founded over 100 years ago in Milwaukee, Wisconsin, USA, and is a global leader applying innovative technology and energy-efficient solutions to products marketed worldwide. However, the “American”AOSIMIHE (note: AOSIMIHE is a rough approximation of the name A.O. Smith transliterated into Chinese) Appliances (International) Group Ltd., registered in Hong Kong, is a free rider attempting to imply a connection between it and the United States-based A.O. Smith Corporation. Based on its Hong Kong company and trademark registration, the former succeeded in registering its “AOSIMIHE” trademark in Mainland China. Today, we’ll discuss how A.O.SMITH Corporation protected its legal interests against the “American” AOSIMIHE Appliances (International) Group Ltd.

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