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Newsletters

Deep & Far Newsletter 2021 ©
May (1)

Taiwan IP Updates

 By Lyndon 

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TIPO Relaxes Regulations for Design Divisional Applications

Previously, in the Guidelines for Design Patent Examination, if the drawings in the design application filed only disclose one design applying to one object, a design divisional application could not be filed for the portions that form no part of the claimed design because the drawings did not specifically disclose two or more designs.  With the newly amended Guidelines for Design Patent Examination issued by the Taiwan Intellectual Property Office in November 1, 2020, that prohibition has now been removed.  Therefore, the applicant may file a design divisional application for any design which has full support from and does not extend beyond the content of the original design application.  For example, a divisional application for a design disclosed in the referential drawing of the original design application is acceptable.  Likewise, a divisional application for a component clearly illustrated in the drawing of the original design application and a divisional application claiming a scope different from that of the original design if it has full support from the disclosure of the original design application are also allowed.

  

Trends in Taiwan Trademark Applications Filed in 2020

By taking the Nice Classes mode of classification, the Taiwan Intellectual Property office has grouped resident trademark applications submitted between 2016 and 2020 into ten major industry sectors.  In this analysis, it was possible to see how different domestic industries have developed in terms of trademark application trends over the past half-decade.  Year by year, the number of trademark applications by case and class has continued to grow, and in 2019, the total surpassed 110,000 cases.  However, the proportion of foreign applications has dropped from around 35-37% previously to 30% in 2020.  Looking at different categories of industry, the top three domestic applications were Agricultural Foodstuffs, Health and Medical Affairs and Business and Finance.  The top three countries for filing were Japan, the United States and China which in total accounted for more than half of all foreign trademark applications.  Looking at the distribution of domestic trademark applications in 2020, there were no changes in terms of industry categories compared to previous years covered in the study.

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TIPO announces Classification Changes and Amendments

Although Taiwan has adopted the International Nice Classification to divide goods and services into 45 different classes, there are several descriptions that differ.   Responding to The Ministry of Health and Welfare which announced the abolition of the criteria for cosmetics containing medical, poisonous or potent drugs in August, 2020, goods specified as medicated toiletry preparations, medicated shampoos, and medicated mouth washes will no longer be acceptable in Class 5.  The relevant acceptable description will now be: toiletry preparations for medical purposes, after-shave lotions for medical purposes, shampoo for medical purposes, and mouth washes for medical purposes.  This change was prompted by an amendment to the Cosmetic Hygiene and Safety Act which means such goods have to abide by the relevant laws and regulations enacted by the Ministry of Health and Welfare as well as the Taiwan Food and Drug Administration.  By being classified as pharmaceutical in nature, the new regulations need to be taken seriously by applicants during the application process.  For example, if the goods are not truly classifiable in Class 5, an alternative classification is possible in Class 3 for products such as hair waving preparations, hair dyes, shampoos, hair conditioners, body wash (for humans), and non-medicated mouth washes.  With this updated classification change, a clearer separation between what is pharmaceutical or not can be upheld.

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