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Supreme Court launches revised rules on intellectual property rights cases

The Supreme Court on Wednesday launched the 2020 Revised Rules of Procedure for Intellectual Property Rights Cases in an effort to improve and expedite IP rights litigation in the country.

Approved by the court en banc last October and effective since November 16, the revised rules are "designed to foster a legal atmosphere that ultimately spurs creative activity and innovation, technology transfer, and foreign investment," the SC Public Information Office said.

The revisions include amendments in procedure, and "for the first time," also list the accepted evidence of actual use of a mark in trademark infringement and unfair competition cases.

These include labels of the mark as used, downloaded pages from the website of the applicant or registrant showing the goods are being sold or services rendered in the Philippines, photographs of goods bearing the marks as these are actually used or of the stamped or marked container of goods and of the establishment/s where the services are being rendered, among several others, according to the rules.

The revised rules also impose upon courts a 60-calendar day period to decide IP rights cases, shorter than the original 90-day period.

The rules likewise mandate the training of judges and court personnel on the subject.

SC spokesman Brian Keith Hosaka said the revision is in line with Chief Justice Diosdado Peralta's objective to continuously revise the Rules of Court to ensure the more efficient administration of justice and a faster resolution of cases.

Hosaka said many of the salient amendments in the rules on IP rights cases are similar to revisions in the rules of civil procedure, on evidence, and guidelines for continuous trial in criminal cases. — BM, GMA News