China: (Trademark) Protection For Prior Copyright In Trademark Disputes

Last Updated: 29 January 2015
Article by Jason Wang and Yan Zhang

As prescribed in the Chinese Trademark Law, application for registration of a trademark shall not create any prejudice to another person's prior right, which includes prior copyright. Prior copyright is considered as an important aspect in trademark disputes with various advantages to claim against the disputed trademark, such as automatic protection without registration, cross-jurisdiction protection and cross-Class protection. Regarding protection for prior copyright in trademark disputes, the recognition of a sign as copyrighted work relies on the determination of its originality as prescribed in the Chinese Copyright Law; the identification of infringement upon prior copyright by the disputed trademark generally adopts the principle of substantial similarity and accessibility.

1. Prior copyright: an important aspect in trademark disputes

Recently, the trademark dispute between the famous automaker Tesla Motors, Inc. and Baosheng ZHAN, the registrant of the disputed trademark "TESLA TESLA MOTORS and T Design" in China, has attracted much attention and extensive discussion. According to the latest media coverage dated August 2014, Tesla Motors, Inc. and ZHAN have reached a settlement agreement before Beijing Third Intermediate Court, settling in package all their disputes in relation to trademark, domain name and copyright.1 It is commonly believed in the industry that Tesla Motors, Inc. has taken full advantage of the critical weapon of prior copyright in this trademark dispute, which has aroused public awareness of the importance of prior copyright in trademark disputes again.

In fact, according to the Chinese Trademark Law and other regulations as well as judicial practice in China, prior copyright has always been a very important aspect to claim and one of the major disputed issues in the trademark disputes. The first half part of Article 32 of the Chinese Trademark Law 2013 (Article 31 of the Chinese Trademark Law 2001) prescribes as follows: "A trademark application for registration shall not create any prejudice to the existing prior right of another person." The Trademark Adjudication Standard promulgated jointly by the CTMO and the TRAB in 2005 expressly prescribes that the "prior right" includes the copyright. In addition, Rule 17 of the Supreme Court Opinions regarding Administrative Cases of Trademark Rights Granting and Determination (Fa Fa201012) prescribes: "Even if the Chinese Trademark Law does not provide special regulations on prejudice to the existing prior right of another person, while it falls under the legitimate rights entitled for protection according to the General Principles of Chinese Civil Law and regulations under the other laws, it shall be protected pursuant to such summarizing provision." In Tianjin Yi Hong Science and Technology Services Co., Ltd. vs. China ICBC Co., Ltd. vs. the TRAB case regarding the "ICBC Design," the Supreme Court held in 2012 that if the subject meets the requirements of both the Chinese Trademark Law and the Chinese Copyright Law, such subject may be protected by both laws.2

In addition, copyright has various advantages in contrast to trademark right, such as automatic protection without registration, cross-jurisdiction protection and cross-Class protection.

  1. Automatic protection without registration.Paragraph 1 of Article 2 of the Chinese Copyright Law prescribes as follows: "Work of Chinese citizens, legal persons or other organizations, whether published or not, shall enjoy copyright in accordance with this Law." Rule 6 and Rule 7 of the Implementing Regulations for the Chinese Copyright Law prescribe as follows: "The copyright comes into being on the date of the completion of the work." Furthermore, Paragraph 3 of Article 2 of the Chinese Copyright Law prescribes: "Work of foreigners or stateless persons first published in the territory of China shall enjoy copyright; the term of protection for such right shall commence as of the date of the first publication of the work."Based on the above laws, the granting of copyright is not preconditioned on registration; and the copyrighted work is protected once evidence may establish that the work has been completed or published prior to the application date of the disputed trademark, and the law does not compulsorily require the work to go through the copyright registration. Copyright is automatically granted upon completion or publication of work, no registration is required. Even if the work has not gone through the registration procedure with the relevant authorities, the copyright ownership thereof is still possible to be proved through evidence regarding creation or publication of the work.
  2. Cross-jurisdiction protection.Paragraphs 2 and 3, Article 2 of the Chinese Copyright Law prescribe as follows: "Work of a foreigner or a stateless person published outside the territory of China shall enjoy copyright under an agreement concluded between China and the country to which the foreigner or stateless person belongs or which is his habitual residence, or under an international treaty to which both countries are parties; such right shall be protected in accordance with this Law. Work of a foreigner or a stateless person first published in the territory of China shall enjoy copyright in accordance with this Law." According tothe Chinese Copyright Law as well as the Berne Convention, work published either in China or any other contracting members of the Berne Convention will be automatically protected. Obviously, copyright has the advantage of cross-jurisdiction protection in contrast to trademark right that is strictly limited to jurisdiction.
  3. Cross-Class protection.In practice, prior copyright enjoys cross-Class protection, breaking through the limitation imposed by the Classification of Similar Goods and Services promulgated by the CTMO based on the Nice Classification. Relevant Chinese authorities (the CTMO, the TRAB, and the courts) impose very strict requirements on the well-known trademark recognition, and the trademark right owners accordingly bear a very heavy and complex burden of proof to establish that their trademarks have achieved the well-known status in China. Therefore, prior copyright is a different way and shortcut to seek cross-Class protection. Theoretically speaking, the protection scope of copyright may cover all goods and services under 45 Classes, which is even broader than that of the well-known trademark. That is also the reason why there have been great controversy and extensive discussion over the cross-Class protection scope of prior copyright both academically and in legal practice, failing to reach a completely unified conclusion or consensus.

2. Prior copyright: factors to be considered in legal protection

In the Ritz-Carlton Hotel Company, L.L.C. vs. Shi Shi City Bao Hu Nan Hua Daily Necessities Store vs. the TRAB case regarding the "Lion and Crown Design," both Beijing First Intermediate Court (the first instance court) and Beijing High Court (the second instance court) reversed the TRAB decision, and recognized that the Ritz-Carlton Hotel Company, L.L.C. owned prior copyright on its "Lion and Crown Design."3 This case reflects the factors the courts take into consideration to determine and grant protection for prior copyright in the trademark disputes. Specifically, Beijing First Intermediate Court held that the following conditions should be met when determining the infringement upon the prior copyright: (1) The subject matter claiming for copyright protection should be copyrighted work in the sense of the Chinese Copyright Law; (2) The copyrighted work still falls in the period of protection; (3) The applicant or registrant of the disputed trademark has the possibility of having access to the copyrighted work; (4) The disputed trademark constitutes substantially similar to the copyrighted work; (5) The completion date of the copyrighted work is prior to the application date of the disputed trademark. Based on the facts ascertained, the court held as follows: First, the "Lion and Crown Design" claimed by the Ritz-Carlton Hotel Company, L.L.C. is an artistic expression of lion head, which is original and capable of being reproduced, thus falling under scope of work under the Chinese Copyright Law. Meanwhile, such work still falls in the period of protection. Second, prior to the application date of the disputed trademark, trademarks containing the copyrighted work have been approved for registration and published in other countries and regions. In the absence of evidence to the contrary, it is reasonable to presume that the registrant of the disputed trademark may have access to such copyrighted work. Third, the design part contained in the disputed trademark is identical with the copyrighted work owned by the Ritz-Carlton Hotel Company, L.L.C., and the completion date of which is earlier than the application date of the disputed trademark. In consideration of the above, the court held that the application of the opposed trademark has infringed upon the prior copyright of Ritz-Carlton Hotel Company, L.L.C.

Section 3 "Adjudication Standard of Prejudice to Existing Prior Right of Another Person" of the Trademark Adjudication Standardpromulgated jointly by the CTMO and the TRAB in 2005 prescribes as follows: The application requirements for the provision that an application for registration of a trademark shall not crate any prejudice to the existing prior right of another person under the Chinese Trademark Law are: (1) The disputed trademark is identical with or substantially similar to the prior copyrighted work; (2) The applicant/registrant of the disputed trademark had access or has the possibility of having access to the copyrighted work owned by another person; (3) The application for registration of the disputed trademark has not been authorized by the copyright owner.

Based on the above regulations and judicial practice in China, at least three issues as follows are involved in the protection for prior copyright in trademark disputes: (1) Originality standard of recognizing a sign as a copyrighted work; (2) Evidence proving the ownership of the copyrighted work; (3) Principle of substantial similarity and accessibility identifying the infringement upon prior copyright by the disputed trademark. The latter section of this article will analyze the issues on originality standard of the work and the principal of substantial similarity and accessibility separately.

3. Originality standard of recognizing a sign as copyrighted work

Rule 21 of Beijing High Court Guidelinesfor Trial of Administrative Cases concerningTrademark Right Granting and Determination promulgated in January 2014 prescribe as follows: "It shall be determined in accordance with theChinese Copyright Law, on whether a trademark sign constitutes a work." Rule 2 of the Implementing Regulations for the Chinese Copyright Law prescribes as follows: The term "work" prescribed in the Law shall refer to intellectual creations in the literary, artistic and scientific domains, insofar as they are original and capable of being reproduced in certain tangible form. Therefore, the key issue to recognize a sign as a copyrighted work is the originality. Below are some of the typical cases.

In Sanyo Electronic Co. Ltd. vs. Chengdu Ling Linto Industrial Co., Ltd. vs. the TRAB case regarding the "SANYO and N Design," Beijing First Intermediate Court reversed the TRAB decision, and held that the "N Design" contained in the cited prior trademark "SANYO and N Design" shall be protected as work of art.4

In Japan Tobacco Inc. vs. WAN Jin Gang vs. the TRAB case regarding the "CAMEL (stylized)," Beijing First Intermediate Court did not recognize the originality of the "CAMEL (stylized)." But Beijing High Court held the view that: There is no evidence proving that the "CAMEL (stylized)" is in block letters; and those English letters have distinctive characteristics which are arranged in the form of an arch. Therefore, in the absence of evidence to the contrary, it is reasonable to recognize the originality of the "CAMEL (stylized)."5

In Foshan City Shunde District Ming Bang Chemical Industrial Co., Ltd. vs. Bridgestone Corporation vs. the TRAB case regarding the "B Design," the TRAB, Beijing First Intermediate Court and Beijing High Court all held that the "B Design" has certain originality and is copyrighted work. In addition, Beijing High Court held the view that: It is not necessary for the work to have high originality. It should be protectable as a work under the Chinese Copyright Law as long as the distinctive characteristics it bears are not too subtle to be noted. The "B Design," the work claiming copyright in this case, with unique shape, is an intellectual creation. It is also different from block letters, bearing distinctive characteristics alien from common expression.6

In Ningbo Fu Jia Electron Electrical Appliances Co., Ltd. vs. Ningbo Fu Da Share Stock Co., Ltd. vs. the TRAB case regarding the "FJ Design," the TRAB and Beijing High Court both held the view that the design involved is composed of deformed English letters "FJ" which are the initials of pinyin of "FU JIA in Chinese." It is original and is an aesthetic two-dimensional work of art constituted by lines, colors, and other forms.7

In Shantou City Longhu District Jin He Food Industry Co., Ltd. vs. Friesland Brands B.V. vs. the TRAB case regarding the "Kievit and Bird Design," the TRAB, Beijing First Intermediate Court, and Beijing High Court all held that the design of kiwi bird is the depicture of the bird species in nature, and the design of kiwi bird has established its originality despite of the simple technique of expression thereof.8

In Wenzhou Tian Shi Electronic Appliance Co., Ltd. vs. Sollatek (U.K.) Limited vs. the TRAB case regarding the "Sollatek (stylized)," both Beijing First Intermediate Court and Beijing High Court reversed the TRAB decision, and held that "Sollatek" in handwriting is only constituted by eights English letters, the expression technique of which is not different from the commonly used handwriting. The enlarged initial letter and the whole word in italics are also consistent with common handwriting habits. The distinctive characteristics of "Sollatedk" shaped by handwriting are too subtle to be noted.9

In Shiseido Co., Ltd. vs. HONG Wei Hong vs. the TRAB case regarding the "ettusais and ettusais in Chinese (handwriting)," Beijing First Intermediate Court held that the difference between each English letter of "ettusais" and that in common used handwriting is hardly to perceive, and each Chinese character of "ettusais in Chinese (艾杜紗)" is also common in Chinese handwriting, and the combination of the Chinese characters and English letters of the subject sign is arranged of words flowing from left to right in parallel, without presenting any difference in its overall shape from the existing arrangements of letters and characters. Therefore, the subject sign does not create visual impression different from that of the previous works. Even if the subject sign is identified different from the existing expression of Chinese characters and English letters, obviously, the difference is too subtle to be regarded as originality required by work or art.10

In the "és (stylized)" and "Wei Long in Chinese and Wei Long (stylized)" case, the TRAB and the courts all held the signs do not constitute the copyrighted works.11

4. Principle of substantial similarity and accessibility identifying the infringement upon prior copyright by the disputed trademark

The principle of substantial similarity and accessibility is generally adopted when deciding whether prior copyright is infringed upon. Namely, whether the disputed trademark is substantially similar to the copyrighted work, and whether the holder of the disputed trademark has had access or has the possibility of having access to the prior copyrighted work.

First, one issue is whether the disputed trademark is substantially similar to the copyrighted work. The basic principle is whether the disputed trademark is confusingly similar to the copyrighted work.

In the "ICBC Design" case, the TRAB, Beijing First Intermediate Court and Beijing High Court all held as follows: Both two signs are designs depictured by black lines, presenting in terms of overall visual effect an outer circle surrounding a figure of the Chinese character "工" or the English letter "H" hollowed out. While being the major difference between two designs, the "工" and "H" are sharing the same style and strokes, and have no substantial difference in respect of the ratio between the character/letter and the circle. Consumers are likely to regard the opposed trademark as the copyrighted work vertically turned. Therefore, the opposed trademark is deemed as substantially similar to the copyrighted work. The Supreme Court as the retrial court affirmed the decisions of Beijing First Intermediate Court and Beijing High Court.12

In the "CHICAGO BULLS and Bulls Design (color designed)" case, Beijing High Court held as follows: Although the opposed trademark contains the characters "Hua Xin in Chinese," the design part occupies the relatively large portion, and such design is extremely similar to the copyrighted work owned by the opponent NBA Properties, Inc. in terms of mode of composition, technique of expression, and overall effect, and has constituted substantially similar to the copyrighted work.13

In the "KP and Mimi Design" case, both Beijing First Intermediate Court and Beijing High Court held that the copyrighted work "Rabbit with Flower Design and KP KIDS' STUFF BY KNITPLANNER" is of high originality; the top of the disputed trademark is a rabbit with a flower between two capitalized letters K and P; the bottom of the disputed trademark is the words "KIDS' STUFF." The disputed trademark constituted substantially similar to the copyrighted work.14

Second, the other issue is whether the holder of the disputed trademark had access or has the possibility of having access to the prior copyrighted work. The possibility of accessibility to the prior copyrighted work may generally be determined through the following aspects.

  1. Originality of the Work.If the copyrighted work is of high originality, the possibility is lower that the owner of the disputed trademark could independently creates the identical or substantially similar work. In the absence of reasonable explanations and/or evidence to the contrary, the court may presume that the holder of the disputed trademark has had access or has the possibility of having access to the copyrighted work.
  2. Long Term Use and Fame of the Work. The actual use of the copyrighted work and the trademark containing such copyrighted work may be used to establish that the applicant/registrant of the disputed trademark has the possibility of having access to such copyrighted work.For example, in theabove-mentioned "ICBC Design" case, both the TRAB and the court held as follows: The ICBC bank logo has been extensively used and has enjoyed high fame among consumers; thus, the opposed party should have known the design.
  3. Business Relationship.Where there is business relationship, such as contract relationship, employment relationship and shareholder relationship, between the owner of the copyright and the applicant/registrant of the disputed trademark, such business relationship may be used to establish that the applicant/registrant of the disputed trademark should have the possibility of having access to such copyrighted work.

Originally published by China Trademark magazine (Issue 10, 2014).

Footnotes

[1] http://tech.sina.com.cn/it/2014-08-05/14449536442.shtml

[2] The Supreme People's Court Administrative Order (2012) Zhi Xing Zi No. 60

[3] Beijing First Intermediate Court Administrative Judgment (2010) Yi Zhong Zhi Xing Chu Zi No. 3223, Beijing High Court Administrative Judgment (2012) Gao Xing Zhong Zi No. 595

[4] Beijing First Intermediate Court Administrative Judgment (2007) Yi Zhong Zhi Xing Chu Zi No. 1115

[5] Beijing First Intermediate Court Administrative Judgment (2012) Yi Zhong Zhi Xing Chu Zi No. 1286, Beijing High Court Administrative Judgment (2012) Gao Xing Zhong Zi No. 1782

[6] Beijing First Intermediate Court Administrative Judgment (2010) Yi Zhong Zhi Xing Chu Zi No. 2632, Beijing High Court Administrative Judgment (2012) Gao Xing Zhong Zi No. 1652

[7] Beijing First Intermediate Court Administrative Judgment (2006) Yi Zhong Xing Chu Zi No. 465, Beijing High Court Administrative Judgment (2006) Gao Xing Zhong Zi No. 383

[8] Beijing First Intermediate Court Administrative Judgment (2006) Yi Zhong Zhi Xing Chu Zi No. 735, Beijing High Court Administrative Judgment (2007) Gao Xing Zhong Zi No. 179

[9] Beijing First Intermediate Court Administrative Judgment (2010) Yi Zhong Zhi Xing Chu Zi No. 2493, Beijing High Court Administrative Judgment (2012) Gao Xing Zhong Zi No. 1048

[10] Beijing First Intermediate Court Administrative Judgment (2012) Yi Zhong Zhi Xing Chu Zi No. 165

[11] Beijing First Intermediate Court Administrative Judgment (2010) Yi Zhong Zhi Xing Chu Zi No. 3026, Beijing High Court Administrative Judgment (2011) Gao Xing Zhong Zi No. 664, Beijing First Intermediate Court Administrative Judgment (2012) Yi Zhong Xing Chu Zi No. 2386, Beijing High Court Administrative Judgment (2013) Gao Xing Zhong Zi No. 546

[12] Beijing First Intermediate Court Administrative Judgment (2011) Yi Zhong Zhi Xing Chu Zi No. 2533, Beijing High Court Administrative Judgment (2012) Gao Xing Zhong Zi No. 219

[13] Beijing First Intermediate Court Administrative Judgment (2011) Yi Zhong Zhi Xing Chu Zi No. 2431, Beijing High Court Administrative Judgment (2013) Gao Xing Zhong Zi No. 962

[14] Beijing First Intermediate Court Administrative Judgment (2010) Yi Zhong Zhi Xing Chu Zi No. 3488, Beijing High Court Administrative Judgment (2011) Gao Xing Zhong Zi No. 857

The content of this article is intended to provide a general guide to the subject matter. Specialist advice should be sought about your specific circumstances.

To print this article, all you need is to be registered on Mondaq.com.

Click to Login as an existing user or Register so you can print this article.

Authors
Jason Wang
 
Some comments from our readers…
“The articles are extremely timely and highly applicable”
“I often find critical information not available elsewhere”
“As in-house counsel, Mondaq’s service is of great value”

Related Video
Up-coming Events Search
Tools
Print
Font Size:
Translation
Channels
Mondaq on Twitter
 
Register for Access and our Free Biweekly Alert for
This service is completely free. Access 250,000 archived articles from 100+ countries and get a personalised email twice a week covering developments (and yes, our lawyers like to think you’ve read our Disclaimer).
 
Email Address
Company Name
Password
Confirm Password
Position
Mondaq Topics -- Select your Interests
 Accounting
 Anti-trust
 Commercial
 Compliance
 Consumer
 Criminal
 Employment
 Energy
 Environment
 Family
 Finance
 Government
 Healthcare
 Immigration
 Insolvency
 Insurance
 International
 IP
 Law Performance
 Law Practice
 Litigation
 Media & IT
 Privacy
 Real Estate
 Strategy
 Tax
 Technology
 Transport
 Wealth Mgt
Regions
Africa
Asia
Asia Pacific
Australasia
Canada
Caribbean
Europe
European Union
Latin America
Middle East
U.K.
United States
Worldwide Updates
Registration
Mondaq Ltd requires you to register and provide information that personally identifies you, including what sort of information you are interested in, for three primary purposes:
  • To allow you to personalize the Mondaq websites you are visiting.
  • To enable features such as password reminder, newsletter alerts, email a colleague, and linking from Mondaq (and its affiliate sites) to your website.
  • To produce demographic feedback for our information providers who provide information free for your use.
  • Mondaq (and its affiliate sites) do not sell or provide your details to third parties other than information providers. The reason we provide our information providers with this information is so that they can measure the response their articles are receiving and provide you with information about their products and services.
    If you do not want us to provide your name and email address you may opt out by clicking here
    If you do not wish to receive any future announcements of products and services offered by Mondaq you may opt out by clicking here

    Terms & Conditions and Privacy Statement

    Mondaq.com (the Website) is owned and managed by Mondaq Ltd and as a user you are granted a non-exclusive, revocable license to access the Website under its terms and conditions of use. Your use of the Website constitutes your agreement to the following terms and conditions of use. Mondaq Ltd may terminate your use of the Website if you are in breach of these terms and conditions or if Mondaq Ltd decides to terminate your license of use for whatever reason.

    Use of www.mondaq.com

    You may use the Website but are required to register as a user if you wish to read the full text of the content and articles available (the Content). You may not modify, publish, transmit, transfer or sell, reproduce, create derivative works from, distribute, perform, link, display, or in any way exploit any of the Content, in whole or in part, except as expressly permitted in these terms & conditions or with the prior written consent of Mondaq Ltd. You may not use electronic or other means to extract details or information about Mondaq.com’s content, users or contributors in order to offer them any services or products which compete directly or indirectly with Mondaq Ltd’s services and products.

    Disclaimer

    Mondaq Ltd and/or its respective suppliers make no representations about the suitability of the information contained in the documents and related graphics published on this server for any purpose. All such documents and related graphics are provided "as is" without warranty of any kind. Mondaq Ltd and/or its respective suppliers hereby disclaim all warranties and conditions with regard to this information, including all implied warranties and conditions of merchantability, fitness for a particular purpose, title and non-infringement. In no event shall Mondaq Ltd and/or its respective suppliers be liable for any special, indirect or consequential damages or any damages whatsoever resulting from loss of use, data or profits, whether in an action of contract, negligence or other tortious action, arising out of or in connection with the use or performance of information available from this server.

    The documents and related graphics published on this server could include technical inaccuracies or typographical errors. Changes are periodically added to the information herein. Mondaq Ltd and/or its respective suppliers may make improvements and/or changes in the product(s) and/or the program(s) described herein at any time.

    Registration

    Mondaq Ltd requires you to register and provide information that personally identifies you, including what sort of information you are interested in, for three primary purposes:

    • To allow you to personalize the Mondaq websites you are visiting.
    • To enable features such as password reminder, newsletter alerts, email a colleague, and linking from Mondaq (and its affiliate sites) to your website.
    • To produce demographic feedback for our information providers who provide information free for your use.

    Mondaq (and its affiliate sites) do not sell or provide your details to third parties other than information providers. The reason we provide our information providers with this information is so that they can measure the response their articles are receiving and provide you with information about their products and services.

    Information Collection and Use

    We require site users to register with Mondaq (and its affiliate sites) to view the free information on the site. We also collect information from our users at several different points on the websites: this is so that we can customise the sites according to individual usage, provide 'session-aware' functionality, and ensure that content is acquired and developed appropriately. This gives us an overall picture of our user profiles, which in turn shows to our Editorial Contributors the type of person they are reaching by posting articles on Mondaq (and its affiliate sites) – meaning more free content for registered users.

    We are only able to provide the material on the Mondaq (and its affiliate sites) site free to site visitors because we can pass on information about the pages that users are viewing and the personal information users provide to us (e.g. email addresses) to reputable contributing firms such as law firms who author those pages. We do not sell or rent information to anyone else other than the authors of those pages, who may change from time to time. Should you wish us not to disclose your details to any of these parties, please tick the box above or tick the box marked "Opt out of Registration Information Disclosure" on the Your Profile page. We and our author organisations may only contact you via email or other means if you allow us to do so. Users can opt out of contact when they register on the site, or send an email to unsubscribe@mondaq.com with “no disclosure” in the subject heading

    Mondaq News Alerts

    In order to receive Mondaq News Alerts, users have to complete a separate registration form. This is a personalised service where users choose regions and topics of interest and we send it only to those users who have requested it. Users can stop receiving these Alerts by going to the Mondaq News Alerts page and deselecting all interest areas. In the same way users can amend their personal preferences to add or remove subject areas.

    Cookies

    A cookie is a small text file written to a user’s hard drive that contains an identifying user number. The cookies do not contain any personal information about users. We use the cookie so users do not have to log in every time they use the service and the cookie will automatically expire if you do not visit the Mondaq website (or its affiliate sites) for 12 months. We also use the cookie to personalise a user's experience of the site (for example to show information specific to a user's region). As the Mondaq sites are fully personalised and cookies are essential to its core technology the site will function unpredictably with browsers that do not support cookies - or where cookies are disabled (in these circumstances we advise you to attempt to locate the information you require elsewhere on the web). However if you are concerned about the presence of a Mondaq cookie on your machine you can also choose to expire the cookie immediately (remove it) by selecting the 'Log Off' menu option as the last thing you do when you use the site.

    Some of our business partners may use cookies on our site (for example, advertisers). However, we have no access to or control over these cookies and we are not aware of any at present that do so.

    Log Files

    We use IP addresses to analyse trends, administer the site, track movement, and gather broad demographic information for aggregate use. IP addresses are not linked to personally identifiable information.

    Links

    This web site contains links to other sites. Please be aware that Mondaq (or its affiliate sites) are not responsible for the privacy practices of such other sites. We encourage our users to be aware when they leave our site and to read the privacy statements of these third party sites. This privacy statement applies solely to information collected by this Web site.

    Surveys & Contests

    From time-to-time our site requests information from users via surveys or contests. Participation in these surveys or contests is completely voluntary and the user therefore has a choice whether or not to disclose any information requested. Information requested may include contact information (such as name and delivery address), and demographic information (such as postcode, age level). Contact information will be used to notify the winners and award prizes. Survey information will be used for purposes of monitoring or improving the functionality of the site.

    Mail-A-Friend

    If a user elects to use our referral service for informing a friend about our site, we ask them for the friend’s name and email address. Mondaq stores this information and may contact the friend to invite them to register with Mondaq, but they will not be contacted more than once. The friend may contact Mondaq to request the removal of this information from our database.

    Emails

    From time to time Mondaq may send you emails promoting Mondaq services including new services. You may opt out of receiving such emails by clicking below.

    *** If you do not wish to receive any future announcements of services offered by Mondaq you may opt out by clicking here .

    Security

    This website takes every reasonable precaution to protect our users’ information. When users submit sensitive information via the website, your information is protected using firewalls and other security technology. If you have any questions about the security at our website, you can send an email to webmaster@mondaq.com.

    Correcting/Updating Personal Information

    If a user’s personally identifiable information changes (such as postcode), or if a user no longer desires our service, we will endeavour to provide a way to correct, update or remove that user’s personal data provided to us. This can usually be done at the “Your Profile” page or by sending an email to EditorialAdvisor@mondaq.com.

    Notification of Changes

    If we decide to change our Terms & Conditions or Privacy Policy, we will post those changes on our site so our users are always aware of what information we collect, how we use it, and under what circumstances, if any, we disclose it. If at any point we decide to use personally identifiable information in a manner different from that stated at the time it was collected, we will notify users by way of an email. Users will have a choice as to whether or not we use their information in this different manner. We will use information in accordance with the privacy policy under which the information was collected.

    How to contact Mondaq

    You can contact us with comments or queries at enquiries@mondaq.com.

    If for some reason you believe Mondaq Ltd. has not adhered to these principles, please notify us by e-mail at problems@mondaq.com and we will use commercially reasonable efforts to determine and correct the problem promptly.

    By clicking Register you state you have read and agree to our Terms and Conditions