has launched an intellectual property agency to register trademarks in China.
The firm has transferred four of its staff, including associates and trademark specialists, to the the Jones Day Intellectual Property Agency (Beijing) Co. Ltd. in Beijing. It has hired one new staff member for the team.
Foreign law firms in China are not allowed to practice local law and that generally includes filing documents with government bodies. But pursuant to an economic agreement with Hong Kong, the Chinese government has permitted firms that have been present in Hong Kong for at least three years to launch separate but wholly-owned IP agencies on the mainland.
These agencies can file applications with China Trademark Office and also handle trademark-related matters before China’s Trademark Review and Adjudication Board and Chinese customs service. Such IP agencies are barred from handling patent-related matters.
Beijing partner Horace Lam says creating the new agency “will allow another layer of direct support to clients” facing trademark infringement or counterfeiting issues in China.
Bird & Bird
have established similar IP agencies in China.