On February 28, 2022, the Intellectual Property Tribunal of the Supreme People’s Court of China released its annual report (2021). Here we outline some key points from the annual report for your reference.
(1) Basic Case Statistics
In 2021, the Tribunal accepted 5,238 (recently received 4,335) intellectual property and antitrust cases and closed 3,460 cases. Compared to the same period in 2020, newly accepted cases increased by 1158 (36.4% increase) and closed cases increased by 673 (24.1%).
(2) Statistics of Average Number of Cases Concluded by Judges and Average Length of Trial of Cases
In 2021, each judge closed an average of 83.5 cases with a year-on-year increase of 1.2%. The average trial period to closing is 134 days, the average trial period to closing of substantive civil appeals is 129.4 days, and the average trial period to closing administrative appeals is 143.6 days.
(3) Classified statistics of cases
Among the 2569 newly received substantive civil appeals, the distribution between the different intellectual property rights is as follows:
Of these, a significant increase was observed in infringements of patent rights for inventions, disputes relating to computer software, disputes concerning the right to apply for a patent and the ownership of a patent, disputes concerning trade secrets and disputes concerning new varieties of plants, while there was a decrease in cases of jurisdictional exceptions. Among the 1290 newly received administrative appeals, 457 were disputes concerning the examination of rejection of invention patent applications, 36 were disputes concerning the examination of rejection of utility model patent applications, 3 were disputes concerning the examination of the rejection of the design patent applications. In addition, there were 283 disputes concerning the invalidation of invention patents, 234 concerning the invalidation of utility model patents, 102 concerning the rejection of design patent applications, one dispute concerning the revision of the rejection of an application for new varieties of plants, 2 were disputes concerning an administrative monopoly and finally 172 were other administrative cases involving administrative penalties and administrative decisions. Compared to the previous year, all types of administrative disputes increased significantly, with the largest increase being the number of disputes involving the examination of the rejection of applications for invention patents and the invalidation of patents. invention.
(4) Overseas Related Business, Hong Kong, Macao and Taiwan Related Business
In 2021, the court recently received 437 cases involving foreign affairs, Hong Kong, Macao and Taiwan-related cases, accounting for 10.1% of the total number of cases received, with a year-on-year increase. by 16.2%. 280 overseas-related cases in Hong Kong, Macao and Taiwan were concluded, accounting for 8.1% of the total number of cases closed, the same number as the previous year.
(5) General Characteristics of Cases
With regard to the general characteristics of the cases, firstly, the number of civil appeals on the merits and administrative appeals on the merits has continued to increase. Secondly, relevant advanced technology fields are expanding day by day. Third, the international characteristics of litigation are more important. Finally, the regional origin of the cases is more differentiated. In addition, the characteristics of patent civil cases, patent administrative cases, new plant variety law, trade secret cases, computer software cases and monopoly cases are also presented in detail.
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