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An Appeal Mechanism for Intellectual Property Cases at the National Level to Be Established in China

The "Decision on Several Issues Concerning the Proceedings of Patent Cases (Draft)" was submitted to the Standing Committee of the National People's Congress for deliberation on October 22nd, 2018. The Draft stipulates that if a party refuses to accept the first-instance judgment or verdict of a civil or administrative case with strong professional technical skills, they shall appeal to the Supreme People's Court (SPC).
"The establishment of an appeal mechanism for IP cases at the national level is a major deployment of the first meeting of the 19th Leading Group for Deepening Reform Comprehensively." Zhou Qiang, the Chief Justice and President of the SPC, said in his explanation of the Draft that recently the Central Committee has approved the SPC establish a unified IP court hearing the appeals with strong technical expertise nationwide such as patents.
According to the Draft, if the parties refused to accept the first-instance judgment and verdict on civil and administrative cases involving inventions, utility model patents, new plant varieties, integrated circuit layout designs, technical secrets, computer software, monopoly, etc. that have strong technical expertise, they shall appeal to the SPC within the statutory period.
The Draft also prescribes that, if a retrial and counterappeal is filed against the above cases in accordance with the trial supervision procedures in which the first-instance judgments, verdicts and mediation documents have already had legal effects, it shall be tried by the SPC, and the SPC may also order the people's courts at lower levels to retrial.
Zhou Qiang said that appeals involving inventions and utility model patents being unifiedly heard by the IP court of the SPC will optimize the legal environment for scientific and technological innovation, strengthen the equal protection of IP rights of both Chinese and foreign enterprises, and promote the formation of business environment that is legalized, internationalized and facilitated.
Patents and other cases have special professionalism and high complexity. The second-instance trial powers of such civil and administrative cases are centralized in the IP tribunal of the SPC, and the two major procedures and trial standards of IP rights validity determination and infringement determination are integrated. These will be conducive to solving the problem of non-uniformity of the judgment standards restricting scientific and technological innovation from the mechanism, improving the quality and efficiency of trials of IP cases, strengthening the judicial protection of IP rights and effectively improving the judicial credibility, Zhou Qiang said.
Date: October 22nd, 2018
Source: Xinhua News Agency
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