Infringement litigation expedited


    The revised rules on the disposition of intellectual property rights (IPR) cases would encourage IPR holders to run after infringers and improve the conviction rate on these cases.

    The Revised Rules of Procedure for IP Rights Cases which took effect last Nov. 16, 2020 following their approval by the Supreme Court, drastically expedite and reduce cost of litigation.

    The rules specially cut the period for rendering judgment on regular cases to 60 days from 90 days and allows additional Special Commercial Courts to issue writs of search and seizure in civil and criminal actions.

    The rules also paved the way for the revised order of destruction which includes disposal of infringing goods, related objects, or devices, specifying the manner or method of disposal and/or destruction thereof.

    Courts may also issue an order disposing of them by way of donation for humanitarian use, subject to conditions. However, those classified as hazardous shall only be subject to destruction.

    The rules will also allow for the crafting of a list of what shall be accepted as proof of actual use of a mark in trademark infringement and unfair competition cases.

    The rules will also now accept market survey as an evidence to prove primary significance, distinctiveness, or status of a mark and/or likelihood of confusion.

    An important provision in the revised rules mandates the training of judges and court personnel by the Philippine Judicial Academy in coordination with the Office of the Court Administrator.

    “The 2020 Revised IPR Rules in ensuring an effective and speedy adjudication of IP rights cases- an essential pillar in creating an environment that fosters innovation, promotes investments and entrepreneurship,” said Rowel Barba, director-general of the Intellectual Property Office of the Philippines. (IPOPHL), in his remarks at the launch yesterday. – Irma Isip