Chapter I General Provisions
Purpose of this Act
This Act is enacted for protection of the rights of trademark, certification mark, collective membership mark, collective trademark and the interests of consumers, maintenance of fair competition, and promotion of development of the industry and commerce.
Registration for protection
Any person who wishes to obtain the rights of trademark, certification mark, collective membership mark, or collective trademark shall apply for registration therefor in accordance with this Act.
Competent Authority and Registrar Office
The Competent Authority of this Act is the Ministry of Economic Affairs (hereinafter as the MOEA).
Trademark affairs shall be administered under a registrar office appointed by the MOEA.
Principle of reciprocity
An application for trademark registration, filed by a national of a country other than the Republic of China (ROC), may be inadmissible if such country does not accede to any international treaty for protection of trademarks, to which the ROC accedes, or does not conclude with the ROC any treaty or agreement for reciprocal protection of trademarks, or does not admit applications for trademark registration filed by nationals of the ROC.
Use of trademark
“Use of a trademark” means any of the following act, in the course of trade, where such trademark is capable of being recognized by relevant consumers as a trademark:
(1) to apply a trademark to goods or packaging or containers thereof;
(2) to possess, display, sell, export, or import the goods referred to in the preceding subparagraph;
(3) to apply a trademark to articles relating to the provision of services; or
(4) to apply a trademark to commercial documents or advertisements relating to goods or services.
The preceding paragraph shall also apply to acts performed by digital audio-visual means, through electronic media, on the Internet, or through other media.
Appointment of trademark agent
An applicant, holder or other interested person may appoint a trademark agent to apply for trademark registration and related affairs. Those who have no domicile or business establishment in the territory of the ROC shall appoint a trademark agent to apply for trademark registration and related affairs.
A trademark agent shall have a domicile in the ROC.
Application for registration of jointly owned trademark
When there are two or more persons who wish to jointly own a trademark, the application shall be filed in the names of all the joint applicants. The joint applicants may also elect one of them to represent all the joint applicants in the process of application for registration and related affairs, and receive relevant documents on their behalf.
In the absence of electing a representative referred to in the preceding paragraph, the Registrar Office shall assign the first-listed joint applicant in the application as the person to be served upon and shall give the subsequent joint applicants a notice of such service matters.
Inadmissibility of application; restoration to status quo ante
Unless otherwise prescribed in this Act, an application or other proceedings of trademark shall be inadmissible if an applicant, holder or other interested person thereof has failed to comply within the statutory period, to conform to legal formality that cannot be amended, or to conform to legal formality which is not amended within the period specified in a notice. However, if the failure to conform to legal formality which is not amended within the specified period has been amended before the disposition is rendered, such application or proceeding shall still be admissible.
Where an applicant, holder or other interested person has failed to comply within the statutory period by reason of an act of God or any event not attributable to such applicant, holder or interested person, he/she may apply for restoration to the status quo ante, within thirty days from the day following the date on which the cause vanishes, by submitting a written statement to the Registrar Office clarifying the reason. No application for restoration to the status quo ante may be made upon the failure to comply within the statutory period for more than one year.
When applying for restoration to the status quo ante, the omitted act that should have been done within the statutory period shall be completed together with the application for restoration.
The preceding two paragraphs shall not apply to the failure to comply within the period prescribed in Paragraph 3 of Article 32.
Date to be based on
The date of application and other proceedings of trademark shall be based on the date of receipt of the written documents or articles at the Registrar Office. The date of those via postal service shall be based on the postmarked date of the place of origin.
Unless otherwise proved by the concerned party, the date of those whose postmarked date appears to be ambiguous will be based on the date of receipt at the Registrar Office.
Service by publication
Where a disposition or any other document cannot be served, such disposition or document shall be published in the Trademark Gazette and shall be deemed having been duly served in thirty days from the day following the date of publication.
The Registrar Office shall publish and circulate the Trademark Gazette, in which registered trademarks and relevant particulars shall be entered.
The Trademark Gazette referred to in the preceding paragraph may be published and circulated by electronic means; the date of commencement thereof shall be prescribed by the Registrar Office.
The Registrar Office shall maintain the Trademark Register, in which the trademark registrations, changes to trademark rights and all other particulars prescribed by acts or regulations shall be entered and made available to the public.
The Trademark Register referred to in the preceding paragraph may be produced by electronic means.
Application and other proceedings of trademark may be transmitted by electronic means; the implementing regulations thereof shall be prescribed by the Competent Authority.
Assignment of examiner
The Registrar Office shall assign examiner(s) to conduct the examination of applications for trademark registration, opposition, invalidation, and revocation.
The qualification of examiner referred to in the preceding paragraph shall be prescribed by law.
Disposition in writing
The Registrar Office shall render a written disposition on examination of applications referred to in paragraph 1 of the preceding article, in which the reason is stated, and serve the said disposition to the applicant.
The disposition referred to in the preceding paragraph shall bear the name(s) of the examiner(s).
Calculation of period
For the purpose of calculation of a period, except those referred to in Paragraph 1 of Article 33, Paragraph 4 of Article 75, and Article 103, the first day does not count.
Provisions applied mutatis mutandis
The provisions of this Chapter with respect to trademarks shall apply mutatis mutandis to certification marks, collective membership marks, and collective trademarks.