China joins the Hague System

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Death of Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II

The staff at Franks & Co were saddened to learn of the death of Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II. Our thoughts are with His Majesty King Charles III and the rest of the Royal Family.

The United Kingdom is now officially in a period of mourning until after the Queen’s state funeral which is to be held on Monday 19 September. Normal day-to-day business will continue throughout this period.

The UK government has declared the day of the funeral to be a national Bank Holiday, so the United Kingdom Intellectual Property Office will be closed on Monday 19 September.

The United Kingdom Intellectual Property Office’s official guidance on bank holidays is given below:

The office is deemed to be closed on weekends, Good Friday, Christmas Day and all England and Wales bank holidays for all types of business, except for the filing of new applications not claiming priority. If documents are filed for these types of business at times when the office is deemed to be closed, they will receive an official filing date of the next working day.

Any official time period which expires on a weekend or any other day on which the office is closed is extended to the next working day.

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On February 05, 2022, the Government of China deposited its instrument of accession to the 1999 Geneva Act of the Hague Agreement. This makes the People’s Republic of China the 77th member of the Hague System for International Registered Designs.

The 1999 Geneva Act of the Hague Agreement entered into force in China on May 05, 2022. However, the 1999 Act does not apply in the Hong Kong Special Administrative Region or the Macao Special Administrative Region of the People’s Republic of China until otherwise notified by the Government of the People’s Republic of China, as specified in the instrument of accension.

Under the Hague system for international designs, a single design application can be filed at the World Intellectual Property Organisation (WIPO) in Geneva and becomes effective in all states designated in the application.

The international design system is open to UK applicants and is a cost-effective and convenient way of registering a single design in many territories in a single procedure. The United Kingdom has become a part of the Hague international design system in its own right.

China is the second largest economy (by GDP) and is the latest significant territory to join the Hague System for International Registered Designs since Japan and the United States of America joined in 2015, and the European Union joined in 2008.

China’s membership of the Hague System for International Registered Designs is the latest addition to a list of seven international treaties relating to intellectual property since China’s economic boom in the late 1980s.

Typically, the cost of an international design registration covering for example China, the US and Japan is significantly less than the cost of the alternative procedure of obtaining separate Chinese, US and Japanese national registered designs.

Article by Luke Franks luke.franks@franksco.com

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Article Published June 1, 2022