Why Do Companies Need to Trademark Their Names and Logos in the Philippines?

The rationale behind the issuance of rules and regulations on Trademarks, service marks, and trade names is to encourage the development of domestic creativity. Trademarks and Tradenames are protected under the law. It is the law’s way of recognizing the psychological function of symbols. The law understands that trademarks is a merchandising shortcut which induces a purchaser to select what he wants or what he has been led to believe he wants.


What is a Trade Name?

According to Sibal in his Philippine Legal Encyclopedia, Central Lawbook Publishing Co. Inc., trade names include names and surnames, devices, or words used by manufacturers, industrialists, merchants, agriculturists, or any other persons to identify his business, vocation, or occupation. It is a name under which any person or firm does business whether or not it is the proper name or names of the proprietors or a more or less fanciful name of the product or service. Its purpose is to point out the individuality of the maker, for protection n trade, to avoid confusion in business, and to secure the advantages of a good reputation. 


What is a Trademark?

A trademark is a word, a group of words, sign, symbol, or a  logo that distinguishes your business’ goods or services from those of other traders. It is the representation of your business’ brand in the market. Registration gives the owner exclusive right to use the trademark and prevent others from using or exploiting the same. 

Arce Sanc & Co. v. Selecta explains that its function is to designate distinctively the origin of the products to which it is attached. 


What are the Functions of a Trade Name?

  • To point out the individuality of the maker;
  • To protect trade;
  • To avoid confusion in business;
  • To secure advantage of reputation;
  • To identify the business of goodwill 


What are the Functions of a Trademark?

  • To point out distinct originality or ownership of the goods or merchandise;
  • To secure to the owner the fruits his identity or skill;
  • To prevent fraud. 


Why Register your Trade Names and Trademarks?

Registering a trademark entitles the owner of a registration the right to sue for acts committed not only after registration but even prior to the date on which its mark was registered in the Philippines. 


  • It protects your brand as it establishes legal ownership over the mark representing your brand.
  • Help you freely operate.
  • Registration bars other people from using similar trademarks.
  • Save money on possible conflicts.
  • Effective advertising and marketing tool.
  • Value for brand.
  • Familiarity by reason of the trademark can also help with employment.


Who can Register a Trademark?

Any natural or juridical person may apply for registration of a mark. 


Why Register your Company’s Trade Name and/ or Trademark?

Pursuant to Section 122 of the Intellectual Property Code, it provides that the rights in a mark shall be acquired through registration made validly in accordance with the provisions of this law.


Registering a trademark entitles the registered owner to all the rights stated under the Intellectual Property Code. It confers legal ownership over the mark representing your brand and will give you the following benefits:


  • Help you freely operate.
  • Bar other people from using a similar name or mark.
  • Save money on possible conflicts.
  • Effectively advertise and market your brand .
  • Increase the value of the brand.
  • Familiarizing people with the brand or the business can also help with employment.


In the case of Pharmaceutical v. Natrapharm Inc., the Court held that prior use no longer determines the acquisition of ownership of a mark in light of the adoption of the rule that ownership of a mark is acquired through registration made validly in accordance with the provisions of the IP Code. Further, the Intellectual property Office (IPO) now uses the “First-to-file” rule. It means that whoever was first to file for registration of the mark, the rights to the trademark is given to that party. Therefore, in effect those who first registered the name or the mark will enjoy the rights under the Intellectual Property Code and the prior user cannot ask for the cancellation of the registered owner’s registration. 


Need further information and assistance on legal matters?  Talk to our Legal team at Duran & Duran-Schulze Law to know more about the requirements and process. Call us today at (+632) 8478 5826 or send an email to info@duranschulze.com for more information.

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