The definition is quite simple: name representing a business. However, its usage and scope may be regarded as more complex than a simple requirement for incorporating a new company in Dominican Republic.
Known by everyone as the first step for incorporation, trade name carries the weight of protecting the business’s identifier, which distinguishes the company among its clients, providers and the entire marketplace. Therefore, a poorly registered, expired or unattended trade name, directly affects the continuity and reputation of the holder.
Although our legislation affords a protection to the trade name since its first use in the country. In practice a registration before the National Office of Industrial Property (ONAPI) is what gives effectivity to exclusiveness in trade name.
What is exclusivity? No one can use or register a trade name (or any other distinctive sign) identical or confusingly similar to the one already registered. If a third party performs any of these actions, it may be liable for industrial property right violation.
Nonetheless, simply registering and locking away a registration certificate does provide a perpetual right over the trade name. Since use in commerce is actually required to maintain registration. If the trade name is not used for more than five (5) years without any justification, it can be declared as abandoned and its holder would lose its registration and exclusivity.