Enforcement of IP Rulings Gain High Priority

As a part of an amplified effort to ensure the integrity and the development of the rule of law, Chinese judges are giving high priority to the enforcement of monetary judgments and strict punishment for noncompliance. Jiang Ying, a Beijing Intellectual Property Court judge, stated that the great difficulty in implementing verdicts is permanently stopping defendants from harming plaintiffs’ IP rights. Since 2015, the Supreme People’s Court has declared to fight defaulters as the issues surrounding them surface in public complaints. To solve these issues, an individual who has been a victim of IP rights damage is allowed to file another lawsuit asking a court to intensify the punishment as a result of repeated infringements. For example, in a trademark dispute, a court tripled the number of damages ordered an increase from 200,000 RMB to 600,000 RMB after recurring violations.

With the impending threat of increased punitive damages, this strategy of enforcement has sped up prosecution, and better IP protection is ensured. Utilizing this approach, Judges in Guangdong province have also made a massive initiative to push people to comply with verdicts in domestic cases or ones involving juveniles. For instance, this has been applied to urging divorced defendants to pay child support. As a result of this, individuals who fail to carry out verdicts shall be prohibited from travelling through airline tickets, high-speed rail and even been restricted from buying amenity goods. As of March 2018, 10.15 million airline trips and 3.91 million rail trips have been stopped.
They have also increased penalties for those who can obey the rulings but choose not to, for example, someone who can pay a debt but refuses. Haidian District People’s Court has punished 286 defaulters since the start of 2017. The amount of money they refused to pay reached 2 billion RMB ($331 million). Through the use of WeChat, clues are collected on defaulters and their possessions over the last year. Courts have concentrated to increase the efficiency and accuracy of tracking down defaulters and their properties by cooperating with public security bureaus, banks and real estate registration entities.

These more burdensome measures are a result of the fact that in the 2017 China Intellectual Property Development Evaluation Report recently released by Intellectual Property Development and Research Center under the State Intellectual Property Office (SIPO), China’s intellectual property development jumped 9% from the previous year and is consistent in a rapid increase. China’s achievements in IP were gradually recognised in the world as a massive phenomenon. [Source: China Daily]

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