Filing trademark for protection

About the market

115.6 mln
% of population aged 15-64 (2022)
compound annual population growth rate (CAGR) in 2012-2022
compound annual population growth rate (CAGR) in 2012-2022
online share of retail sales (2020)

Whom does this concern?

Application developers
IT sector
Game developers
Companies selling in Philippines

Filing trademark for protection in Philippines

With a population of almost 116 million, the Philippines is a fascinating market with huge business potential. This archipelagic republic has been growing at an impressive rate of more than 7.6% per year for years. This alone provides the basis for predicting the country’s business attractiveness. Filipinos are known for their close ties with the West. This is the result of historical links and influences that make it a unique place. What makes it unique compared to other Asian countries is the openness with which foreigners are treated in the Philippines, how Western products and services are received and accepted. In business, the widespread knowledge of English, so useful in international cooperation, is extremely important.

The same applies to the protection of intellectual property rights. The basis of Philippine law contains very large elements of the Western legal system, which means that the protection of intellectual property, including trademarks, is at a high level in the Philippines. This provides security for companies’ investments and intellectual assets, but also forces them to act and secure IPRs in advance. In light of all this, strategically-minded entrepreneurs considering expansion into Asia should take note of the opportunities in this market and prepare accordingly.

10 years
Period of protection from the date of registration
10-14 months
Time taken to register a trademark in Philippines, assuming no objections or complications
Priority is given to those who act first. File your mark first, before someone else is faster

knowledge station

Who can apply for trademark protection in the Philippines?

Anyone can apply for trademark protection in the Philippines – individuals, companies, both domestic and foreign, as well as NGOs and associations.

Why register a trademark in the Philippines?

Philippines is a large market with a population of over 115 million. As a business destination, the Philippines is attractive to foreign companies because of its continuing rapid development and steadily growing population, unlike many western countries. Securing your brand in advance is a prudent step to take while preparing for expansion.

Do I need to use my brand in the Philippines before registering it?

No, it is not required for registration. In the Philippines, trademark applications are processed on a “first come, first served” principle, which means that the first person to apply for protection has priority.

How to maintain a mark registration in the Philippines?

In the Philippines, unlike many other countries, evidence of use of a trademark (known as a DAU) must be filed with the Intellectual Property Office (IPOPHL). Such a declaration must be filed twice during the 10-year protection period. The first time within a period of up to three years from the date of filing the application for protection and within a period of up to one year after the expiry of the mark’s five years of protection.

Declarations of use after renewal of the mark for a further ten-year period must be filed during similar periods.

Can a trademark registration in the Philippines be cancelled if it is not used?

Yes, in the Philippines an unused trademark can be cancelled from protection. This is only possible after three years have passed since the decision to register it. An application for termination of rights on the ground of non-use can be filed by any interested party.

When should a trademark registration be renewed in the Philippines?

An application for extension of protection in the Philippines can be filed no earlier than 12 months and no later than six months before the expiry of the protection period. It is still possible to apply during the so-called grace period, which lasts for six months after the expiry of protection, but this involves additional costs.

#File1st® File your trademark for protection

FAQ - Frequently asked questions

1. How much does it cost to register trademark in the Philippines? 

Costs depend on the number of classes and products submitted. See our price list for details.

2. What types of trademarks can be filed for protection in the Philippines? 

In the Philippines, the following types of marks can be registered as trademarks: word marks, graphic marks and word-figurative marks. In addition, the following marks may be registered: slogans; colour marks, 2D and 3D marks, hologram marks and collective marks.

3. What documents are required to apply to register a trademark directly in the Philippines? 

Typically, you’ll need to provide a proof of identity or an English-translated registration document of the company. Additionally, a power of attorney, a representation of the trademark (such as an image file for figurative or word and figurative marks), and a detailed list of goods and services are required. Including a catalogue of products offered under the trademark can be highly beneficial.

4. In the Philippines, is it possible to apply for multiple classes trademark protection in a single application? 

Yes, in the Philippines it is possible to file a trademark for protection in multiple classes in one application. However, this has its disadvantages. If a mark gets a refusal in one class, then the entire application is put on hold until the proceedings in that class are completed. This can significantly delay the completion of the entire multi-class application, even if the office has not refused protection in the other classes.

5. How to file a trademark in the Philippines - directly with the local office or through WIPO? 

Filing directly with the Intellectual Property Protection Office of the Philippines (IPOPHL) is a faster way to obtain a certificate of registration, which is one of the main advantages of doing so. The speed of the process is due to the fact that, unlike the WIPO procedure, the IPOPHL starts analysing the application as soon as it is received. While at WIPO, application is processed for a couple of months before it arrives in the Philippines, where it is analysed from the beginning. This can save several months of time for the local application.

Filing a trademark directly with IPOPHL is still advantageous for the following reasons, i.e. direct analysis of the list of protected products/services by the local patent representative. This attorney is responsible for adapting the list to the requirements of the IPOPHL. It is also important from the point of view of the application for registration to be able to react quickly in the event of an opposition or protest. In this case, only the local representative, who is in direct contact with the IPOPHL, can quickly prepare and file a response. In the situation of filing a trademark through WIPO, the lack of a designated local representative complicates the process. When the response deadline approaches, the applicant, instead of concentrating on defending the mark, must quickly find a local ombudsman to file a response with IPOPHL in time for the required deadline.

From a market perspective, the advantage of a direct filing is that a local certificate of registration issued by IPOPHL is available. In procedures such as the granting of rights to use the mark by local distributors, it is more readily accepted by local businesses because it has been issued by the local authority and therefore complies with local law. This is also important in the fight against counterfeiting or in the certification of products placed on the market, such as food, food supplements or pharmaceuticals. A Trademark Protection Certificate may be one of the documents required during the certification process.

6. How long does it take the Intellectual Property Office of the Philippines to issue a certificate of registration for a trademark after the publication of the mark (opposition period)? 

Usually up to 5 months – this is how long it takes the Intellectual Property Protection Office of the Philippines (IPOPHL) to issue the original certificate of protection of a mark after publication (opposition period). At the same time, it is important to remember that the Philippines is a specific country where the procedure for the registration of the mark includes two stages of publication. The first lasts only thirty days and constitutes only the opposition period. The second period of publication concerns an already registered mark and the publication itself is a form of informing the public about an already registered mark.

7. How long is a trademark registration valid in the Philippines? 

10 years from the date of registration – that is how long a trademark lasts in the Philippines.

8. I have an individual business (self-employment). Can I file a trademark application for it in the Philippines? 

Of course, if you run your own business, like any other business you can apply for trademark protection ma Philippines. You will be asked by a professional representative to provide at least English version of business licence, description of the products/services offered and a representation of the trademark (graphic file with the mark).

9. How long is the opposition period (publication) in the Philippines?  

The Philippines is a unique country when it comes to the publication of the mark. The procedure provides for two publication periods. But only during the first of these can a protest be filed. The opposition period lasts only 30 days. It is only during this period that an interested party can file an opposition to the intention to grant protection to a trademark.

The second publication already applies only to registered marks and is a kind of notification to the public of the protection granted, although the database of registered marks is open to everyone.

10. How can I check if my brand or a similar one is already registered in the Philippines? 

The availability of the mark can be checked in the database of the Philippine Intellectual Property Office.

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