The China National Intellectual Property Administration (CNIPA) released the Measures on Regulating Patent Applications Activities (Draft for Comment).

Abnormal activities are defined as those violating the good faith principle  and disrupting the normal filing and prosecution order.

Some examples are:

  • filing at the same time or successively a number of patent applications that are obviously the same or essentially formed by simple combination of different features or elements;
  • fabricating, forging or altering contents, experimental data or technical effects of an invention, or copying, substituting, piecing together existing technologies or existing designs in an invention;
  • filing a number of patent applications in name of different applicants at different times and via different local patent bureau while the cases are essentially owned or controlled by or related to a specific party, to avoid the regulatory measures.

Where abnormal activities are discovered, the CNIPA may form a special examination working group or authorize the examiner(s) to start a special examination procedure according to these Measures, the investigation result will be notified to the applicant and he will be invited to voluntarily withdraw the relevant patent application(s) or make a response to the investigation result. The CNIPA may further stop the parties' qualification for official fee reduction or waiver.

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