An important decision for companies is choosing the distinctive trademarks that will identify their products orservices in the future, given that, to a great extent, this decision will be fundamental for the future success of thebusiness. Once factors such as price and quality are linked to a product or service in the consumer’s mind,trademark identification becomes critical. As a result, it is vital to make a proper trademark selection prior to the introduction of the product or service into the market, pursuant to which certain factors must be taken intoconsideration, such as the ease of imitation due to the word(s) or designs chosen, the ease of maintaining thename(s) or images, etc. Given the foregoing, one should consider the following: Carry out a prior investigation to detect possible existing intellectual property rights that may conflict withthe exclusive rights being sought. It is worthwhile to conduct this investigation in various countries to avoidfuture conflicts in potential markets that may be considered in the growth plan of the company. Verify that the chosen trademark complies with all requirements for registration, meaning that it is not ageneric term, not merely descriptive (although it can be suggestive), and verify the meaning of the name invarious languages, because in some cases, the chosen name is descriptive when translated to anotherlanguage and, therefore, not subject to registration. Analyze the official classification of marks to determine whether the mark should be registered only for agroup of products or services or for several classes of products or services.A carefully thought out decision on the choice of a future trademark can be the difference between a product’ssuccess or failure, as well as a form of avoiding future conflicts that can be expensive.
Employee profit sharing is a topic of great importance. Article 123 section IX of the Constitution of the UnitedMexican States stipulates that employees shall have a right to share in company profits (10% of taxable profits inaccordance with the terms of the Income Tax Law). The Federal Labor Law is the law regulating article 123above, which provides for employee profit sharing.Generally speaking, all employers, whether individuals or entities, with salaried employees, have the obligationto make this payment. Only the following are exempt from such profit sharing obligation: (i) newly formed companies, during the first year of operation, It is important to note that merger, transfer or change of thecompany name does not result in a newly formed entity; (ii) newly formed companies dedicated to themanufacture of a new product during the first two years of operation. The determination of the novelty of aproduct must comply with the laws for the promotion of new industries. ; (iii) companies in the mining orextractive[Not sure about this word?] industry, newly formed, during the period of exploration; (iv) privatecharity institutions recognized by law, using privately owned resources to carry out acts for humanitarianassistance purposes, not for profit and which do not designate individual beneficiaries; (v) the Mexican SocialSecurity Institute and public decentralized institutions with cultural, assistance or beneficial purposes; and (vi)companies with capital of less than that established by the Secretary of Labor and Welfare by industry sectors,with prior consultation with the Secretary of the Economy.All employees providing services to a company have the right to profit sharing in accordance with the following:a).- Permanent employees, regardless of the number of days worked during the company’s fiscal year; b).-Temporary employees, once they have worked at least 60 days continuously or discontinuously during the fiscalyear; and c).- Former employees, as long as their right has not lapsed.Persons excluded from profit sharing: (i) directors, administrators and general managers; (ii) individuals who areowners or co-owners of companies; (iii) technical professionals, craftsmen and others who provide their servicesfor a fee without the existence of an employee relationship; and (iv) temporary employment, when the individualworks fewer than 60 days during the company’s fiscal year. Profit sharing is not computed as part of salary forpurposes of severance payments that must be paid to employees.The employer and its employees must designate representatives to form part of a Mixed Commission for ProfitSharing Distribution. Such commission is to be in charge of performing calculations to determine the share ofprofits that will correspond to each employee. Once this commission establishes the amount that will be subjectto a profit sharing distribution, it will be divided into equal parts. The first will be shared in equal parts byemployees, taking into consideration the number of days worked by each employee during the year, regardless ofsalary, and the second part will be distributed in proportion to the amount of salary received by each employeeduring the year, meaning that the corresponding share per employee will depend on their salary. Once suchprocess has concluded, the results of the profit sharing distribution must be published at least fifteen days prior topayment on a list that must be posted in a place that is visible to all company personnel.The distribution of profits among employees should be carried out within sixty days following the date on whichthe annual tax must be paid (at the latest, by May 30 th of the corresponding year), even when an objection by theemployees is in progress.The amount of unclaimed profits during the year of distribution will be added to the distributable amount for thenext year. Finally, it is important to note that the right of employees to participate in profit sharing does notinclude the ability to intervene in the management or administration of the employer.
On April 17, 2012, a Decree was published in the Official Journal of the Federation by means of which sectionVIII was added to article 1391 of the Mexican Commerce Code, increasing the list of documents to which thisregulation grants the “ripe for enforcement” characteristic; therefore, agreements reached in settlementproceedings approved by the Office of the PROFECO Prosecutor and arbitration awards issued by such authorityare expressly recognized as ripe for enforcement, and, as of April 18, 2012, it is possible to file a summarycommercial action based on any of these documents. With respect to such agreements, this amendment simplyrecognizes that which is already established in article 110 of the Federal Consumer Protection Law (LFPC),stipulating that approved settlement agreements and arbitration awards issued by PROFECO have the effect ofres judicata (“a matter already judged”) and are ripe for enforcement, the same which may be presented before acompetent court as a writ of execution or summary action based on the interested party’s choice. However, thiswas a common topic of discussion for the courts, given that a summary commercial action was not expresslyprovided for. This amendment marks the end to such discussion. As far as the second aspect of the amendment,giving the arbitration award issued by PROFECO “ripe for enforcement” status, the amendment merely reiteratesthat which was already provided by article 110 of the LFPC; however, we consider this to be a correct rulinggiven that the arbitration award is clearly a document ready for enforcement for summary commercial action. Itis believed that this amendment will only serve to benefit creditors in situations involving agreements andarbitration awards containing definite amounts that are liquidated and payable upon demand, since the benefit ofsummary commercial actions is that it allows pre-judgment attachment of assets prior to service of process. Suchpre-judgment attachment is allowed given the existence of a definite amount that is the subject matter of thelawsuit. Therefore, it is advisable to include monetary penalties in agreements that are definitive, liquidated andpayable in the event of default. However, if dealing with agreements and arbitration awards that include onlyobligations that must be performed, it is best to enforce the agreement by means of a writ of execution.
Recently, the First Collegiate Court on Administrative Matters of the First Circuit issued court precedent numberVI.1o.A. J/54(9a.) titled “Appeal. The guaranty contained in Article 8 of the Constitution consists of varioussecondary guaranties that form part of it and that should be considered by the district judge during the amparoaction for the violation of such right.” In this legal decision, the Court determined that the sub-guaranties thatform part of the right of appeal are: a) to provide a written response to the appeal filed by a party; b) that theresponse is consistent with that requested by such party; and c) to provide a response to the appeal within a brieftime period. In this sense, it is important to determine the conduct of the corresponding authority upon thepresentation of a request before such authority in order to determine if any of these sub-guaranties have not beenobserved and, if convenient or necessary, file an amparo action challenging the conduct of such authority.