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Hong Kong Patent FAQs

Updated:2018-5-2 10:22:43    Source:www.tannet-group.comViews:340

The patent law in Hong Kong is based on the Hong Kong Patents Ordinance of 27 June 1997, as last amended on 22 February 2008. The Hong Kong patent system is independent from the patent system in the People's Republic of China (PRC), in that a "patent granted for Hong Kong SAR takes effect in Hong Kong only and does not provide for protection in the People's Republic of China (PRC)". The following are the frequently asked questions for Hong Kong patent.

Q: Who can apply for a patent in Hong Kong?
If you are the owner of the invention, you can apply for a patent. If you apply for a standard patent in Hong Kong, China but you are not the applicant named in the designated patent application, you will need to file a statement and supporting documents explaining your right to apply.

Q: What are the types of patent in Hong Kong?
There are two types of patent in the HKSAR: standard and short-term. Both are used for protecting new invention, utilities, functional features, structures, processes, improvements, etc. The longest period of protection for standard patent is 20 years (subject to annual renewal, 1st to 3rd year excepting). The maximum term of protection for short-term patent is 8 years (subject to renewal for the 2nd four years before the expiry of the 1st four years).

Q: Does a Hong Kong patent cover the rest of mainland China?
No. However, some protection is afforded in mainland China by a Hong Kong Patent, since any imports into China via Hong Kong and any exports from China via Hong Kong can be stopped with a Hong Kong Patent. Since the majority of imports into China and the majority of exports out of China which infringe patents pass through Hong Kong, a Hong Kong Patent is clearly potentially of use in protecting mainland China. This is particularly true since enforcing patents in Chinese Courts is very difficult, whilst, the enforcement of Patents in Hong Kong Courts is relatively easy.

Q: Does a Chinese Patent automatically cover Hong Kong?
No. A Chinese patent case, however, can be extended to Hong Kong, just as a European case can be extended to Hong Kong. The implications of obtaining a Chinese patent without obtaining a Hong Kong patent, are that since a Chinese patent does not cover Hong Kong, any infringement in Hong Kong cannot be stopped. Furthermore, since the enforcement of patent rights is difficult in China, the possibility to stop an infringement in China imported and exported via Hong Kong, by using the Hong Kong Courts which rigorously enforce patent rights, is lost.

Q: How long does a Hong Kong Patent last?
A Hong Kong patent lasts 20 years from the filing date of the base European or Chinese case.

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