TRADEMARK IN DUBAI, UAE
In this blog, we will explore the essential attributes you must look for in a trademark litigation firm in Dubai to ensure you receive effective and comprehensive legal representation. The Government of the UAE has taken commendable steps to put in place robust trademark laws. Trademarks in the UAE are well protected by Federal Trademark Law No. 37 of 1992 (amended by Federal Law No. 8 of 2002) (“Trademark Law”). The Trademark Law contains a range of provisions outlining the procedural steps required to register a trademark and the penalties for breach.
A trademark is used to distinguish the goods and services of one trader from those of another; to put it simply, a trademark could be a word, phrase, signature, drawing, symbol, hallmark, stamp, vignette, logo, picture, and/or aspect of packaging that is unique to an organization. It is an important intellectual property for a business registering a trademark deters competitors from using similar names or logos. Once your trademark becomes an asset, it may become a target for competitors in the region. It goes without saying that foreign companies should register their trademarks to acquire their rights and protect them. Registration of trademarks in UAE is accomplished by means of an application to the Trademark Section of the Ministry of Economy and Commerce. By investing in such protection, a company will obtain exclusivity over the rights, which means being able to protect others from using the same right. The Federal Decree Law No. 36 of 2021 issued on 20-09-2021 on Trademarks ensures that trademarks in the UAE are effectively protected. The process of registering a trademark in the UAE involves the following steps:
- Filing an application: The applicant must file an application with the Ministry of Economy, providing details of the mark, the goods or services for which the mark will be used, and the class of goods or services to which the mark belongs.
- Examination of the application: The Ministry of Economy examines the application to ensure that it meets the legal requirements for registration.
- Publication of the mark: If the mark is found to be eligible, it will be published in the Ministry’s Bulletin for opposition purposes. If no opposition is filed within a specified period, the mark will be registered, and the applicant will receive a certificate of registration.
- Issuance of Certificate: In case no objections were raised, or if raised and got rejected by the ministry, the trademark will be registered on the payment of the registration fee and a certificate of registration will be issued.
Once a trademark is registered, it is essential to protect and maintain it. The following are some ways to protect and maintain a Trademark:
- Use the trademark: Regular and consistent use of a trademark is critical to maintaining its protection in the UAE. Failing to use the mark for an extended period may lead to its cancellation or removal from the register.
- Monitor the marketplace: It is crucial to monitor the marketplace regularly for any Trademark infringement. Regular monitoring can help identify potential infringers and allow for prompt legal action to prevent further infringement.
- Renew the trademark: In the UAE, trademark registration is valid for ten years and renewable for similar periods. It is essential to renew the trademark registration before it expires to avoid any loss of rights.
- Record the trademark with Customs: Recordation of the trademark with the UAE Customs can help prevent the importation of counterfeit goods that may infringe on the trademark.
- Take legal action against infringers: If a trademark owner believes their trademark has been infringed, they may seek legal remedies through the UAE courts. Legal remedies available for trademark infringement include an injunction to prevent further infringement, damages for any losses suffered, seizure and destruction of infringing goods, and criminal prosecution in cases of willful infringement.
- Use the appropriate trademark symbols: The use of the appropriate trademark symbols, such as ® or ™, can help notify others that the mark is protected and owned by the trademark owner.
- Educate employees: Educating employees on the importance of trademark protection and the proper use of the trademark can help prevent unintentional infringement and misuse of the mark.
If a trademark owner believes their trademark has been infringed, they may seek legal remedies through the UAE courts. The following are some legal remedies available for trademark infringement:
- Injunction: A court may issue an injunction to prevent further trademark infringement.
- Damages: A court may award damages to the trademark owner for any losses from infringement.
- Seizure of Infringing Goods: A court may order the seizure and destruction of infringing goods.
Trademark registration is important for any business that wants to protect its brand and build customer loyalty. It offers several important benefits, including exclusive rights, the presumption of ownership, public notice, a deterrent to infringement, and international protection.
If you are considering registering your trademark consulting with an experienced trademark attorney is important. A trademark attorney can help you determine whether your trademark is eligible for registration and guide you through the registration process. In the UAE, the registration of trademarks is a simple step-by-step process wherein the application and all the required documents are to be submitted online along with a fee. It is then examined by the Ministry and in case of approval, it is published in two local Arabic newspapers. If there is no objection, then after the payment of the registration fee the registration process is complete. The entire process of registration takes around 5-6 months.
Dr. Manju Sharma
PhD in Medicinal patents