Trademark has a major value for any business, and one of the primary concerns of any well established or successful business man. Therefore at the beginning we must clarify what a Trademark is, its importance, and how the law protects its owner, and the legal procedures to register a trademark.
UAE Trademarks law and Courts’ judgments defines Trademark as any recognizable mark that identifies products or services supplied through its producers or owner. Such a mark can be a drawing, sign, shape or words…etc. Also, in some cases a voice or sound can be recognized as a trademark for the product or service.
Trademark is important because it helps businesses build and retain demand for their products and services while enabling consumers to quickly identify and make a purchase based on a recognized trademark.
Therefore, UAE has laws and regulations to regulate registration of a trademark and protect it. Registration of a trademark must be stipulated by law in order to gain protection; otherwise it will not be recognized .Trademark registration request has to be submitted before UAE Ministry of Economy. As stipulated through UAE law such requests can be submitted by an UAE citizen, or a foreigner, who is practicing commercial, industrial, profession acts inside UAE, in addition to UAE public bodies.
However, a trademark shall not be registered if it is identical or similar to another trademark used for similar of product or service. Nevertheless, as provided through UAE law and courts, in case a trademark was removed from the Ministry’s records a third party may have a right to use it for its business or services. The Third Party must file a request at the Ministry to use the trademark after three years from the date of deletion.
If a registration request was rejected, it can be challenged within thirty days from the date of rejection by the person or entity who submitted the request. Thereafter if that grievance was rejected, the requesting party has the right to challenge that decision before court within sixty days from the date he was notified with it.
On the other hand if the Ministry of Economy accepted the request, according to the law, they must publish the trademark in two daily newspapers before registering it. The reason for publishing is giving the opportunity to any party who may wishes to contest the registration of trademark. Third party must file a challenge within thirty days from the date of publication in the newspaper. Also, the party who submitted the original request has the right to challenge third party’s objections within thirty days from the date of notification.