China Legal: IP and Trademark Registration


*Scroll down for our "China IP FAQ"

At China Sales Co we get contacted regularly by international firms wanting to sell to China. The first question we always ask is; “have you secured your China IP?” We advise and assist brands secure their IP before-they embark on market entry and platforms. Depending on the product and location and types of services, ownership of China IP is often a legal and platform requirement before-a brand is allowed to start selling in China.

China Sales Co is an official broker for China IP and trademark registration.

Our qualified legal partners in Shanghai deliver fast and affordable China IP and legal advisory services. The process to secure your brand IP is affordable, fast and efficient.

We have assisted clients from EU, Australia, USA and other markets protect their brand and IP in China. .


Applying for a trademark is a straight forward.

Step 1: We first need to check whether it is still possible to register, and if there are any similar or “like” competing marks. This is delivered in a report allow 2 working days.

Step 2: Once clear we then need to receive your official KYC documentation the legal team will take care of all official registration procedures on your behalf. This may take 4-8 weeks before initial confirmation of application is received. Companies and brands can then show proof of application and begin to sell inside China.

Step 3: Final confirmation is after 9-12 months. Your trademark is counted and registered from the original date of application.


How much does it cost to secure my China Trademark?

China IP Legal Check and Report: costs USD $150 and takes 2 working days. Checks if the brand has been copied or squatted (or not)! We then can give you the good news to proceed.

IP Registration Costs average* CNY 6000-8000 per-mark depending on sector and any supplementary paperwork that may be required and excluding local China taxes.

Note: a BRAND LOGO + BRAND NAME are 2 separate-marks.

Most brands will choose to register both their name and their logo. We often advise to also register a Chinese version of your brand name for security and potential later use.

Why is my China trademark IP important?

Many companies get caught out thinking that they already have a “global trademark IP rights “ without realising that brand trademarks must be registered in China for them to be recognised by local Chinese law.

Without securing your trademark in China, even beginning to promote your brand and IP is a risk. This includes attending trade fairs, or online marketing from your local area.

Can a foreign business (or person )register and own local China IP and trademarks?

Yes. You do not need to be a registered Chinese business nor need to hold a Chinese passport to own your Trademark and IP inside China. A passport and other supporting KYC documentation is all that is required.

(E.g. For people manufacturing and exporting from China registering the trademark/s helps prevent suppliers from being tempted to selling branded goods inside China).

What is China Trademark Squatting?

China IP is a “first to apply” registration process.

Chinese IP laws do-not recognise having prior use of the trademark outside of China. Nor is a local applicant verified if they have had any connection to the original foreign brand and/or company. It has unfortunately resulted in “trademark squatting” whereby anyone in China can register any trademark or brand and claim it as their own and then offer it for sale to buyers.

Trademark squatting can be a lucrative business. This happens all-too often and even large firms get caught out. For example: Apple famously had to pay over USD $50 million to recover their “IPad” brand name from a squatter!

How is a Trademark Registered in China?

There are only two ways to register a trademark in China; via the national China registration via a China trademark agent (our legal partners are an appointed agent with government license) or, via an international registration via WIPO.

National China registration: is highly recommended as it is faster (9-12 months vs 12-24 months) and clients obtain an official trademark certificate which is requested by many sales and distribution channel partners, outlets, business partners and others.

The WIPO international system classes and China classes vary, which often leads to application not being awarded due to lack of corresponding subclasses (lost in translation).

Once registered any potential upcoming appeal must be filed locally by an agent in China. Finally, using a local (China) firm is also faster and generally cheaper than using an international firm to do the same local filing.

Contact China Sales Co to start securing your China trademark and IP today.

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Tags: china ecommerce, China IP assistance, ChinaTrademark