Due to the UAE’s world-class business infrastructure, entrepreneurs and investors around the world move to this country to set up their business. It has led to more competition in the market. Many companies may even see their brand name or logo being copies without their consent, which can impact their business. And that is where UAE trademark registration can help. Legally registering your trademark, which can be a symbol or a name, in the UAE protects your company.
What is a Trademark?
Trademark is a brand name, symbol or logo used by the manufactures to identify their goods and services that are legally registered or established. It can be a name, word, figure, signature, letter, title, drawing, symbol, title, seal, tax stamp, advertisement, image, inscription, or any other combination that is intended to be used.
The Ministry of Economy is responsible for Trademark registration in the United Arab Emirates (UAE). A trademark is valid for all the seven emirates (Abu Dhabi, Dubai, Sharjah, Umm Al Quwain, Ras Al Khaimah, Al Ain and Fujairah).
Trademark registration is valid for ten years in the UAE, further extension needs additional fees, and the registration can be renewed for the same period. A registered trademark will be under legal protection in UAE for ten years since the date of official TM registration.
What is a Trademark Cost System?
Trademarks are registered under a ‘class’ system in the UAE. Each trademark class covers different products and services. There are 45 international classes, and it is possible to register trademarks in 44 classes in the UAE. A separate application is needed for registration of a trademark in each category. It may be uneconomical and unnecessary for you to register your trademark in classes that are not relevant to your products. Thus, choosing the correct class is important for necessary protection and avoiding unnecessary costs. Al Raqeem takes this responsibility when filing your application.
Which Trademarks can be registered in the Emirates?
There are a few limitations to keep in mind when registering trademarks in the UAE. If you want to register a UAE trademark, it must not contain any of the following:
- Offences against public morals and religions
- Public symbols (such as flags)
- Signs such as for Red Crescent and Red Cross
- Names or titles of third parties
- Direct translations of other well-known trademarks
There may be extra limitations to what can be included in your trademark, that you can find out by contacting the Ministry of Economy or our consultants at Commitbiz.
Benefits of Trademark Registration in the UAE
- Trademark can help to protect your company identity
- Protecting you for using the similar trademark
- “Concrete Proof” of your legally protected rights
- It removes the need to rely on “common law” rights (passing off)
- Registration protects against others who trade in the same, but defective goods/services
Steps to Safeguard your Trademark in the UAE
These six steps will get the trademark registration in the UAE.
1. Look into the Current Trademarks
The first step under trademark registration is to research whether the trademark you want is already taken or not. You can do this by performing an online search. If in case the brand is handled by a different organization, you can't take it. If you make sure that no one accepts the trademark, you can proceed further.
2. Fill an Application to the Ministry of Economy
The application form must be filled in the website of the MoE, the authority that governs the trademark registration process. With the form, you must submit the following documents -
- Power of Attorney
- Trading License
- Contact details of Applicant
- A sample of trademark design
- ID or Passport of the person signing the application form
- List of goods and services to be protected
Once the documents are uploaded, apply.
3. Pay the Fees
Pay the required fees to the Ministry. The registration cost in the UAE does not include any legal translation fees that you may have to pay. You can make the payment via online e-services portal.
4. Application Review by MoE
Once submitted, the Ministry will review your application. Therefore be careful and accurate while filling out the application, as any missing or wrong information can get your application rejected. But in case this happens, applicants can appeal or modify their application as required. And in any case, if the application has no issues, it will be approved in 30 days approx.
5. Publish the Announcement in 2 Local Arabic Language Newspaper
Once approved, you will need to have an announcement of your trademark published in the official journal and two local newspapers. The Applicant will be required to publish the announcement of the brand in two local Arabic-language newspapers, which will incur an additional cost.
The local newspapers where you can publish the announcement of your trademark are:
- Al Khaleej
- Al Watan
- Al Ittihad
- Al Bayan
- Al Wahda
After the announcement is published in two Arabic-language newspapers in the UAE, members of the public have 30 days to voice an objection to the trademark. If someone objects to your trademark in that time, the Ministry of Economy will review the objection, after which they will either reject it or inform you.
However, bear in mind that the Ministry only publishes the announcement at the end of each month, so the applicants could have to wait almost two months to have their trademark registered in the UAE.
6. Receive the Trademark Registration Certificate
Suppose there has been no objection to your trademark in that period. In that case, the Ministry of Economy will then provide you with a certificate of registration for your trademark in the UAE. The certificate will include essential details such as the trademark’s registration number, the trade name and owner’s name, the trademark itself and a description of the goods and services that fall under it.
Renewing Trademark Registration in the UAE
A trademark registered in the UAE is valid for 10 years, after which it must be renewed for an additional cost. After a trademark registration’s validity is finished, you will have 3 months from the date of expiry to renew the registration. However, for each month that you delay the trademark renewal, you will need to pay AED 1,000 as a fine.
The renewal of trademarks in the UAE is done through a similar process as the registration.
we can provide you a step-by-step guide on how you can renew via the website -
- On the website of the Ministry of Economy’s, after selecting ‘Trademarks’ from the Services page, choose Modification and Maintenance Services.
- Choose ‘Trademark Renewal’ from the dropdown list. Apart from filling out the application form, you will have to submit a copy of the old certificate of registration. After you pay the renewal fee, your trademark registration will be renewed within a month.
Cancelling Trademark Registration in the UAE
Are you looking to cancel your trademark registration in the Emirates?
You can do so via the Ministry of Economy’s website. Here's how you can do this -
- On the ‘Trademarks’ page, there is a service under Modification and Maintenance Services, called ‘Cancel Registered Trademark By Owner Request’. Those who want to cancel a registered trademark, can select this service and fill out the application form and submit needed documents. The main document that is necessary to cancel a trademark registration is a copy of the old registration certificate. However, other documents may be required on a case-by-case basis.
Once you have applied, you will need to pay the cancellation fee. If the application is approved, you have to publish an announcement of the cancellation in two local Arabic-language newspapers, after which the procedure will be complete.
Difference Between Trademark and other IP
A trademark is only one form of IP and is typically associated with brands and logos names. The other forms of intellectual property that can be protected by businesses are:
- Patents: These are used for new technology, ideas, inventions, processes, and methods
- Copyrights: These are used for artistic, musical works literary, dramatic works, or computer software
- Industrial Designs: These are used for patterns, shapes, or ornamentation applied to an industrially produced objects
And that brings an end to our trademark registration guide in the UAE!
How can Commitbiz help you?
We understand it isn't easy to do everything on your own when on one side you are handling the business—That's why our consultants will take it forward for you. Right from applying for trademark registration to renewing it, we cover it all. Our consultants have 14+ years of experience in this field and can make the process completely hassle-free for you.
Get in touch with us today - we’d be happy to assist you!