In today's world, everyone wants to outplay and excel, business owners henceforth cannot lag behind. Just running a business is not sufficient as even having a successful business has got certain inimical effects. For surviving in such a competition, it is required to have a clear understanding of every legal aspect of the company. Such legal aspects can be anything ranging from notarizing memorandum to maintaining accounts and other records.
One such essential legal aspect in setting up a company in the UAE, or anywhere is registering a trademark. An individual who has worked really hard to build a brand image would be affected adversely when another person imitates his brand and tries claiming it. So, what to do in such a situation? In such a situation Intellectual property laws come into action and protect such businesses and individuals from adverse imitations. It is essential for the owners of all types of businesses to know the importance of a trademark for their business. Trademark is an important asset allows businesses to create more revenue in terms of their brand recognition. “Trademark is another way of referring to a Business reputation”.
Trademarks in UAE
The government of the UAE has taken exemplary steps for trademark growth. The current mechanism through which the trademark is carried in Dubai is very much similar to that of other countries specifically in the west. In Dubai, most specifically in UAE trademarks are protected by the Federal Trademark Law No. 37 of 1992 (amended by Federal Law No. 8 of 2002)(Trademark Law). The said law contains detailed provisions that provide for the procedure for registering a trademark, the penalties for the breach of such trademark and regulations governing the same. Being one of the most credible trademark registration providers, Commitbiz is here to help you, the detailed process for registration of trademark has been provided under the 6 steps for register for a trademark in the UAE 2019 under our company’s blog.
Registration of trademark has mostly been taken with a misconception that trademark rights in Dubai are acquired by registration and, not ‘use’. Such misconception may be because of other intellectual property rights (like patents or copyrights) wherein registration is necessary for ownership. However, in the case of Trademark, ownership is not always based on registration.
Trademark laws in Dubai, clearly provides the usage as an important element of Trademark ownership. For example, wherein a company or a person registers a trademark and uses it continuously for a period of 5 years from the date of such registration shall be subject to absolute ownership in the eyes of law. Therefore, in any dispute regarding the rights of the parties, the usage of such a trademark is considered as an important factor in determining the ownership rights. There was a case wherein, an international organization filed a suit against a local company in Dubai claiming the ownership rights of the trademark. The court in its judgment stated that ‘’registering a trademark is a presumption for the priority of using the said trademark and a third party has the right to prove his priority of using it’’. Hence, herein the burden of proof lies with the international company to prove their usefulness.
Federal Law No. 37 of 1992 dealing with trademarks provides suitable penalties for trademark infringement:
(1) for forging or imitating a trademark so as to deceive; and
(2) selling, offering for sale or possessing for the purposes of sale, goods bearing a forged or imitated trademark.
The penalties also include imprisonment and/or Fine. There are legal provisions for the seizure of counterfeit goods against a deposit /guarantee prior to initiating any civil or criminal proceedings. A repeat offender shall be ordered to close down his shop/business for a period ranging from 15 days to 6 months. Also, the emirate of Dubai and Sharjah have a topmost track record in clamping down on imitators.
Thus, with the diversification in the UAE business sector, and with the growing competition in the market, the chances of cheating, imitating and false claims have risen. Such a situation demands the business individuals not to leave a room for doubt and hence to focus on every aspect of Intellectual Property law favourable for their business. The process may seem easy but there is always a possibility of omission, hence it would be beneficial to hire a reputed firm that would ensure that your Trademark registration has been duly complied with. If you are looking for such a firm, then look no further as our advisors at Commitbiz can help you in this matter. We will take care of all the problems you face by providing customized solutions for your business. In case of any queries on the various services we provide do contact us – we’d be happy to help.