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China Patent Annuity Maintenance

Updated:2018-5-14 14:43:28    Source:www.tannet-group.comViews:246

The Chinese Patent Law stipulates that where an application for patent for invention has not been granted a patent two years after its date of filing, the applicant shall begin to pay the maintenance fee from the third year onwards to maintain said application for patent to be in force at the Patent Office. Where the applicant fails to pay the maintenance fee, the Patent Office shall deem that the applicant has withdrawn its application on its own initiative, said application for patent shall no longer be in force. The maintenance fees for applications for patent for invention are calculated annually.

Duration of Patent Right
Duration of patent right for inventions is 20 years counting from the actual filing date (not priority date). Duration of patent right for utility model and for design is 10 years counting from the actual filing date (not priority date). 

However, this duration is calculated differently from other terms under Chinese Paten Law. According to the Guidelines for Patent Examination, the filing date is counted into the duration of the patent right. Therefore, the duration of the patent right will be counted until one day ahead of the anniversary of the filing date. For example: with the filing date of Sept. 6, 2000 for an invention patent, the duration of the patent right will be from Sept. 6, 2000 to Sept. 5, 2020, and the date of the termination of the patent right for invention is Sept. 6, 2020 (the date can NOT be postponed in case of statutory holidays.).

For royalty counted on days in any agreement regarding patent acquisition or granting license, each party shall pay close attention to the specific terms of patent rights in China.

Calculation of Annuity Fee Due
The SIPO (State Intellectual Property Office of the P.R.C) will indicate the annuity fee and year in the Notification to Go through Formalities of Registration (issued out concurrently with the Notice of Allowance). In practice, the SIPO determines the initial annuity to be paid together the certificate fee in the said notification, by making use of a supposed grant date, i.e. 5 months from the issuance date of the notification. Therefore, the next annuity due date will be occasionally in the same calendar year as that of granting.

How to handle annuities with security and efficiency is always a big and complicated issue for patentees. All patentees are looking for a reliable, precise and efficient manner to handle the large portfolio of their patents. As we know, many of the giant international companies always prefer having an annuity vendor to monitor and manage its worldwide patent rights, which may save them the time and hassle of administration. As the Local Law varies to each other extensively, a competent associate as local agent of the annuity vendor is also very important for the patentee.

Contact Us
If you have further inquires, please do not hesitate to contact Tannet at anytime, anywhere by simply visiting Tannet’s website, or calling Hong Kong hotline at 852-27826888 or China hotline at 86-755-82143422, or emailing to You are also welcome to visit our office situated in 16/F, Taiyangdao Bldg 2020, Dongmen Rd South, Luohu, Shenzhen, China.

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