Legal Risks When Using Unlicensed Software in Vietnam

The use of non-copyrighted software is an infringement of intellectual property rights in Vietnam.

The user of non-copyrighted software will bear civil, administrative and criminal legal responsibilities.

Specific regulations are as follows:

  • Civil liability:
  1. Subjects who commit acts of infringing intellectual property rights will be forced to stop the act of violation, apologize, make corrections and compensate for damages according to Article 204 and Article 205 of the Intellectual Property Law.
  2. Accordingly, the subject of the violation will have to compensate the software owner for all damages, including the price of transferring the right to use the intellectual property object, the total physical damage calculated in money plus with the profits earned due to the act of infringing intellectual property rights, the total mental damage, and litigation costs requesting compensation for damages.
  • Administrative responsibility:
  1. Violation of using non-copyrighted software will result in a fine ranging from 30 million dong to 70 million dong as per Article 18 of Decree 131/2013/ND-CP (amended and supplemented by Decree 28/2017/ND-CP).
  • Criminal liability:
  1. Using non-copyrighted software can lead to criminal liability according to the provisions of Criminal Code No. 100/2015/QH13 (amended and supplemented according to Law No. 12/20217/ QH14).
  2. Fine from 300 million dong to 3 billion dong or suspension of operations for a period of 06 months to 02 years for legal entities that copy software without the permission of the owner.
  3. And additional penalties include a fine from 100 million dong to 300 million dong, a ban on doing business, a ban on operating in certain fields or a ban on raising capital from 01 year to 03 years.

What can TTVN Legal support Clients?

Based on the specific needs of the Client, our lawyers at TTVN Legal will assist on:

  • Consulting on legal regulations related to software copyright in Vietnam.
  • Consulting and supporting clients when detecting copyright infringement from third parties.
  • Consulting and supporting computer software copyright registration procedures (if any).

Contact us if you need further advice.