AIPLA Submits Joint Letter to House Committee on Ways and Means Regarding Enforcement of Intellectual Property Rights at the Border

Written November 10, 2021

On November 10, 2021, AIPLA, alongside nine other entities, joined on a letter to House Committee on Ways and Means Chairman Richard Neal and Ranking Member Kevin Brady regarding enforcement of intellectual property rights at the border. The letter expressed concern with the flow of counterfeit goods across the United States border, calling for stronger, more effective trade enforcement and information sharing with the private sector. The growth of e-commerce is noted as one of the significant drivers of counterfeits, with the COVID-19 pandemic accelerating the trend with an influx of fake tests, spurious treatments, and ineffective personal protective equipment.

The letter noted efforts provided by U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) are ongoing, but resources are stretched thin. It is stated that more must be done to ensure CBP has the authority, the resources, and the tools to more effectively prevent the entry of illicit imports, and it is suggested that CBP work with other agencies and the private sector to boost enforcement.

The letter encouraged support for pending legislative language, including key provisions such as those to explicitly address CBP’s asserted concerns regarding the applicability of the Trade Secrets Act to the agency’s disclosure of information to rights-holders, and the propriety of CBP’s current enforcement procedures that unnecessarily delay, or entirely preclude, the provision of assistance or independent follow-on investigations by intellectual property owners.

To read the full letter, please download the file.