Written by Mr. Jian Xu, IP Expert and collaborator of the China IP SME Helpdesk
There is a saying among Chinese lawyers and judges that “Litigation is all about evidence”. This clearly shows the crucial importance of evidence collection in a Chinese legal battle. The saying is perhaps more true for trademark disputes than other types of litigation because the majority of trademark opposition and revocation in China are in the form of written proceedings rather than oral hearings.
Consequently, it is essential to guide the claimant to uncover and collect as much relevant evidence as possible in a trademark dispute. The following evidence checklist can facilitate the evidence collection process.
(1) Do you have any trade documents in relation to your trademark?
Supply/purchase contracts; Invoices; Bills of lading; Bank documents; Import/export certificates; Others of the above nature
(2) Do you have any information on the sales situation of the trademark goods/services?
Geographic area covered by sales; Sales network listing individual shops; Sales distribution channel; Modes of sales; Others of the above nature
(3) Do you have any financial statistics in relation to your trademark goods/services?
Sales revenue; Profit; Tax paid; Sales quantity; Turnover; Industry rankings; Advertisement spending; Others of the above nature
(4) Do you have any marketing or promotion material in relation to the trademark?
Broadcast; Movie; TV; Newspaper; Magazine; Internet; Outdoor advertisement; Media reports; Others of the above nature
(5) Have your trademark goods/services been exhibited?
Trade fair; Expo; Others of the above nature
(6) Do you know when your trademark was firstly created?
(7) Can you explain in detail the originality of your trademark?
(8) Do you know when your trademark was first used in the market?
(9) Do you have any information relating to the use of your trademark on a yearly basis?
(10) Do you have all the registration details of your trademark in China and abroad?
(11) Has your trademark ever been recognized as a well-known trademark by Chinese authorities?
(12) Have you had any disputes in relation to your trademark?
(13) Has your trademark been infringed/counterfeited before?
(14) Have you won any awards in relation to your trademark?
(15) Do you have trade relations with the other party?
(16) Have you ever collaborated with the other party in any way?
(17) Do you trade in identical or similar geographic areas with the other party?
(18) Do you have identical or similar distribution channels with the other party in relation to your trademark goods/services?
(19) Have you had any disputes with the other party before?
(20) Does the other party have any contact or communication with your staff or employees?
(21) Has the other party conducted any misleading marketing/promotion taking unfair advantage of the reputation of your trademark?
(22) Has the other party threatened or forced you to have trade relations with it?
(23) Has the other party asked for unreasonably high trademark assignment fees or license fees from you?
(24) Has the other party threatened to sue you for trademark infringement and asked for unreasonably high compensation or settlement fees?
- Publication date
- 8 April 2022