One positive impacts our current situation has done for us in general, is that most of the things that we usually have to do offline and be physically present for, have been tweaked to be made available online. This includes the usual visit to the Intellectual Property Office in McKinley Taguig.
If you’ve ever filed a trademark before, you should know you have to declare 3 years later that you’ve indeed been using the trademark, for you to be able to maintain the TM, and for the IPO to continue on and protect the IP for you. This is a Declaration of Actual Use, and failing to exhibit utility will terminate the validity of your trademark. I’ve lost a TM before because I simply forgot to file a DAU. Sadge.
Luckily, instead of going there, paying for parking, and getting a number to line yourself in queue from station to station, you can now file it online! No lines, instant, and I’ve done it myself! Here are the steps:
- Download the DAU form, under “Trademark” column, fill it up, and have it notarized.
- Scan and save your files separately – one PDF file for the notarized DAU form, another for the proof of use. So you’ll have two separate files.
- Access eDocFile for TM on the IPO Philippines website and select the request group DAU/DNU with the respective Request Type. In my case, it’s the Declaration of Actual Use (3rd year).
- Click Next and find the Affected Trademarks you’re applying the DAU for. You can input via searching through their database easily using keywords, and selecting.
- The next tab, Attachments and Declarations, will have you attach your documents. When attaching your DAU Form, attach it as a Request Letter. When attaching your proof of use, attach it as Declaration of Actual Use.
- Clicking next will lead you to the Confirmation tab with an acknowledgment you can download, alongside digitally signing the submission with your name and email. It should be noted I wasn’t redirected to the Applicants and Representatives tab of the process. I assume this is applicable if you also attached a special Power of Attorney on the 3rd tab.
- You will then proceed with payment. I chose PayMaya simply because it was easier – any card would do.
That’s it! You should receive a confirmation in the email you provided while doing the signature. But just to be sure, be proactive in doing screenshots, and taking note of reference numbers. FYI, once you successfully pay via PayMaya, it will automatically redirect back to IPOPhil in about 10 seconds, so be sure to screenshot that fast.
Remember that the DAU (3yr) is your first obligation in maintaining the TM. There’s a 5yr DAU, and a 1 year from the date of renewal DAU. For a full explanation on how you can maintain your trademark, visit this page of the IPO Philippines.
If you found this useful, and know somebody who could use this info in protecting their trademarks, share it with them. Hope that helps. Keep your Intellectual Property protected!