The Ambos Mundos legal story can already be considered a saga by virtue of the long period that has elapsed since it began. To say that our legal system is quite slow is the understatement of the century. Rights have been trampled on and disregarded without compunction behind the legal gooble-de-gook of appeals and motions that have clearly exhausted their reason and relevance. My only consolation is that my prior right over the trade name is always upheld in each and every venue where the false claimants choose to bring their claim to. I have actually observed an interesting phenomena related to this case. Every time they suffer a legal debacle through an unfavorable decision, they hit back with a frenzy of media blitz.
To see false claimants to the business name selling their story through media and reading them online is both heartbreaking and laughable because of the erroneous details being forcefully peddled on a largely gullible audience who have no access to the facts. They do not even bother to get their history right. Our ancestors are probably rolling in their graves whenever they attribute names to the wrong pictures or reference questionable dates and events whenever they need a story to tell.
For the record:
Ambos Mundos Restaurant has not carried Chinese cuisine from its inception up to the time that the last legally recognized Ambos Mundos was closed. I have nothing against Chinese cooking but to include it in the description of the restaurant today is clearly just an orchestrated effort to explain why people associated with a Chinese restaurant (Wah Sun Panciteria) are laying claim to it. To include it would probably necessitate changing the name to Tres Mundos to accommodate the three cultures of Filipino, Spanish, and Chinese which they are trying to do. History will say that Ambos Mundos refers only to Filipino and Spanish dishes to agree with the English translation of Two Worlds or Both Worlds. Insisting on the inclusion of Chinese influence is just plain hard-sell at this point aiming to lend an air of legitimacy to an otherwise illegal use of a business name.
Ambos Mundos- the trade name does not play any part in the highly-romanticized union between my brother and his wife. There was no agreement, implicit or implied, written or oral , to the effect that the business name will be used by the family of my brother's wife by virtue of the marital union. They should know better since their family is in the same line of business as us. The legal use of a long-established trade name does not come about in such a manner. It was plain and simple taking advantage of an internal problem with our family.
Los Ambos Mundos Restaurant and Ambos Mundos Restaurant Inc. are not recognized to carry the trade name and are in fact been directed by the concerned government agencies to delete the words "AMBOS MUNDOS" from their business name/s which obviously they refuse to follow. It should be noted that these two "registered" names refer only to a single physical entity and the same set of incorporators. The second registration was done within a matter of days after the DTI Office of Legal Affairs released its decision in my favor. My intention to re-register was again frustrated by a "no-brainer" technicality they took advantage of which they in effect blame to DTI and so we brought our case to SEC. The SEC Decision can be viewed through the url provided below as well as the Court of Appeals Decision which I believe is the cause of their most recent marketing hype since it again frustrates their objective.
Come to think of it, the communication between DTI Office of Legal Affairs and the DTI Business Name Registration must be seriously flawed for the latter to render useless the efforts of the former even if they are only floors apart in the same building. My problem started when DTI Business Name Registration allowed my brother to renew my certificate of registration. Common sense tells us that one cannot renew that which is not registered to him in the first place. Instead of correcting an obvious error, DTI Business Name Registration only gave me one option which is to bring a case against my brother to be lodged with the DTI Office of Legal Affairs. I won the case after ten long years of waiting but DTI Business Name Registration again committed a grave injustice against me when they again allowed my brother, now with the family of his wife to register the trade name as a corporation because (take note) the trade name was not registered to anyone at that time they applied. What!!!
Of course, it wasn't registered because they wouldn't allow me as the case was still pending. And when the case was resolved in my favor, the other side beat me by several days because apparently I was the last one to know of the decision. Strike 2 for DTI Business Name Registration. Am I missing something here?
It was a good thing that I have already registered the trade name with the Intellectual Property Office or else all my efforts would have amounted to nothing. SEC for its part has already directed the other party to change its business name while the Court of Appeals recently upheld my prior right over the trade name AMBOS MUNDOS.
The issue of ownership of the trade name AMBOS MUNDOS does not get to be settled on television. It will be settled in the legal courts and agencies where they should be. To my mind, the endless motions and appeals are part of a dilatory tactic so I don't get to use the name while they take their time and enjoy the benefit of using it since the case is still under "appeal". My personal appeal goes to the concerned courts and agencies to provide finality to this dilemma and once and for all say that enough is enough. I have suffered in silence for a long time and I want to believe that I will get to live to see the day that such suffering ends.
Setting the record straight.
By Maria Teresa Gaudinez
For related story, see: http://just-passing-thru.blogspot.com/2010/10/defending-family-legacy-ambos-mundos.html
To see Intellectual Property Office (IPO)Trademark Listing - refer to item # 359:
Court of Appeals Decision Promulgated on April 25, 2012:
The first registration of "Los Ambos Mundos Restaurant" and the subsequent registration of "Ambos Mundos Restaurant Inc." in spite of a pending case extended to extraordinary proportions because of their unending appeals and previous decisions in my favor speak of the callousness of its incorporators in trying to wrestle a trade name which they had no hand in building, from myself and my family who are the rightful owners, seemingly at all costs. The Leung siblings identified with Wah Sun Panciteria have no business meddling with our trade name. If the situation was reversed and my siblings and I established a "Wah Sun Panciteria 2" because one of us and one of them just happened to be married, I don't think they will allow us. I know as well as they should that it doesn't happen that way.
They cannot even claim that they do not know the real score since the one appearing in our last hearings was one of the Leung siblings already and no longer my brother.
That said, for the nth time, these people have again lodged an appeal hoping that there will be one agency or institution that will take their side. They have been hiding for the longest time behind the loopholes of the human justice system where cases drag on for years. I hope to God that no agency or institution will allow this injustice to prevail. So far, our cause has been supported and strengthened by all legal entities involved.