China's Basic Courts May Handle First Instance Patent Trial

The amendments to Several Provisions of the Supreme People's Court on Issues Relating to Application of Law to Adjudication of Cases of Patent Disputes took effect on April 15, 2013, with the expanded jurisdiction by forum level.

The jurisdiction of first instance trials over patent disputes will no longer be limited to intermediate people??s courts across China. Further to originally Art. 2, the new rule adds that the Supreme People??s Court may designate local basic courts (district/county courts) over some first instance patent trials, according to the related facts.

In 2012, the number of first instance civil IP cases accepted and closed by local basic courts has grown by 45.99% and 44.07% to 87,419 and 83,850 respectively, while the number of first instance administrative cases by 20.35% and 17.37% to 2,928 and 2,899; the number of first instance criminal cases by 132.45% and 129.61% to 13,104 and 12,794.

(Adapted from Interpretation (2013) No.9 and 2012 IP Judicial Protection Report, SPC Website)