INTELLECTUAL PROPERTY RIGHTS IN HONG KONG
First Renewal Term
Subsequent Renewal Term
The Trade Marks Ordinance (Cap. 559) and the Trade Marks Rules (Cap. 559A) are the two primary laws dealing with trademark registration and protection in Hong Kong.
Trademark protection is obtained by registration. It can also be acquired by sufficient public recognition so to establish common law rights.
For obtaining the benefits of a registered trademark , an application for registration must be made to the Trade Marks Registry within the Intellectual Property Department of Hong Kong.
Hong Kong follows the 11th edition of Nice Classification. Multiple-class trademark applications are possible in the nation.
Opposition against a trademark application in Hong Kong may be filed within three (03) months minus one (01) day from the publication date in the Hong Kong Intellectual Property Journal.
In accordance with the Hong Kong Trade Marks Ordinance Cap.559 (section 49), registered trademarks last for ten (10) years from the date of application, which can be further renewed indefinitely for successive periods of ten (10) years each.
Trademarks in Hong Kong may be renewed within six (06) months before the expiry of the validity term but not later than six (06) months after its expiry.
If a registered trademark is not used for a continuous period of at least three (03) years in Hong Kong by the owner or with his consent, it may be revoked on the ground of non-use.
The Patents Ordinance (Cap 514), which came into effect on 27th June 1997, governs the mechanism of patent protection in Hong Kong.
To obtain a patent in Hong Kong, an applicant is required to file an application with one of the three designated patent offices, i.e., the National Intellectual Property Administration, P.R.C. (CNIPA), the United Kingdom Intellectual Property Office (UKIPO), or the European Patent Office (EPO) designating the United Kingdom, and then file a request to record the same in Hong Kong within six (06) months after publication of the designated application by the designated patent office.
The People’s Republic of China has applied the Patent Cooperation Treaty (‘PCT’) to the Hong Kong SAR to facilitate the seeking of patent protection in the Hong Kong SAR.
There are two types of patents granted in Hong Kong SAR, namely standard patents and short-term patents. The term of protection of a short-term patent is up to eight (08) years.
There is no mechanism for third parties to oppose a patent application. However, invalidation proceedings can be initiated in infringement proceedings.
Standard patent applications (original patents) are granted upon successful completion of the substantive examination, and are valid for twenty (20) years from the filing date. Renewal fees are paid for each year after the expiry of the third year from the filing date.
The patent renewal fee is to be paid starting from the 4th year of the filing date of the designated application, if the 3rd anniversary takes place or occurs after the grant date in Hong Kong, and annually thereafter.
However, if a standard patent has not been granted within five (05) years from the filing date of the designated application occurring after the publication of the Hong Kong standard patent application, the applicant needs to pay the maintenance fee starting from the 6th year to keep the application in force. Subsequent renewal fees are payable annually thereafter throughout the patent term.
The Registered Designs Ordinance (Cap 522) - governs and deals with the mechanism of registration of industrial designs in Hong Kong.
Design rights exist by way of registration. Designs can be filed with the Designs Registry, Intellectual Property Department. Design registration can protect the shape, configuration, pattern, and/or ornament of an article, which appeal to and are judged by the eye. For obtaining design protection, a design must be new and not be contrary to public order or morality.
The types of industrial design applications that can be filed in Hong Kong include Non-Convention Application and Convention Application.
The applicant must classify the articles according to the class or classes in the International Classification for Designs, i.e., the Locarno Classification.
Filing multiple industrial design applications in Hong Kong is possible provided that the designs relate to the same class of articles under the Locarno Classification or to the same set of articles.
Opposition against an industrial design application can't be raised in Hong Kong.
The registration a design in Hong Kong lasts for five (05) years beginning from the filing date. It may be extended for additional periods of five (05) years each up to a maximum of twenty-five (25) years from the date of filing upon payment of the renewal fees.
Utility models are not protected in Hong Kong.
Hong Kong law provides no general grace period when the design has been publicly disclosed.
There is no system for copyright registration in Hong Kong.
The main international intellectual property conventions, which have been applied to the Hong Kong SAR by the People's Republic of China, are the Paris Convention for the Protection of Industrial Property, the Berne Convention for the Protection of Literary and Artistic Works, and the WIPO Performances and Phonograms Treaty.
Copyright automatically subsists in a creative work, which is original in skill, judgment, and labour, and effort has been expended in its creation.
Moral rights are recognized in Hong Kong. Moral rights are not infringed unless they are asserted. Moral rights are not assignable, but can be waived by an instrument in writing signed by the author.
Copyright protection in literary, dramatic, musical, and artistic works expires at the end of fifty (50) years from the end of the calendar year in which the author dies. If the work is computer-generated, copyright expires at the end of fifty (50) years from the end of the calendar year in which the work was made.
Copyright protection in sound recordings expires at the end of fifty (50) years from the end of the calendar year of release.
Copyright protection in broadcasts and cable programmes expires at the end of fifty (50) years from the end of the calendar year in which the broadcast was made or the programme was included in a cable programme service.