Essential Trademark Maintenance Checklist For Business Owners
Many small businesses operate in the UAE without fully realising the importance of brand protection. A good number of small businesses still don’t believe in protecting brands and hence ignore trademark registration in the UAE. Many other SMEs fail to implement the steps required to maintain their registered trademarks in the UAE. Losing rights over your valued trademarks will only help your competitors to beat you in the market.
To avoid such risks, you can use this article as a guide that contains a handy checklist to ensure that your trademarks are in perfect order. If not, now might be a good time to do a bit of introspection. The good news is that most of these points may be done at a relatively low cost. Read ahead.
Display the Trademark Symbol
A good number of trademark owners show a lackadaisical attitude when it comes to displaying their trademark symbols. If you have completed the trademark registration in the UAE and the Trademark Office has granted a trademark certificate, there is no qualm in displaying the trademark symbol. A trademark symbol announces to the world that your trademark is registered in the UAE.
It also reminds potential infringers that your trademark is protected and no one else has the right to use it without a trademark license. Without a trademark symbol, no one will understand your brand is protected in the UAE ( unless they check the official trademark register). Also, a reminder: don’t display the symbol if your UAE trademark registration process is incomplete.
Check if your address for a trademark is Valid
Once a trademark is registered with the UAE Trademark Office, many brand owners forget about updating about any potential change that may occur later. One such common mistake is forgetting to keep up with company address changes. It’s great a problem as any correspondence regarding the trademark should go to the owner of the mark unless you have a representative.
If the address for your trademark is an expired one, any correspondence from the Trademark Office will go to your old address. You will miss important information from the Office such as a notification about a new trademark application that you wish to oppose. If you want to update your address with the Trademark Office, talk to trademark agents in Dubai immediately.
Check if the trademark is under the right ownership
If your business is acquired by someone else or you are winding up the company, the ownership of the trademark will change. Another scenario is that the trademark may be registered under your personal name and now you want to assign it to your company name. This means you need to update the changes in ownership in the trademark register without delay. Delay in assigning a trademark to the new owner will delay your attempts to enforce your trademark against an infringer.
Enlist a trademark watching/alert service
If you are serious about maintaining your trademarks, availing trademark watching services in the UAE is essential. Your registered trademark is always under threat from potential infringers. Merely conducting trademark registration in the UAE won’t guarantee a safety net for your trademarks. By availing of a trademark watch service, trademark agents in Dubai will monitor the trademark database regularly and send alerts to brand owners whenever a conflicting trademark is filed at the Trademark Office.
Trademarks should fully cover your business
Your small business won’t always remain small. As the business grows, you will add new products and services that are not listed under the original trademark. Sometimes, you will rebrand, and the old logo trademark registration won’t suffice to convey your new brand’s message to the consumers.
This will become an issue if any infringement comes up and relying on trademarks that aren’t up to date will not help you issue. If you have rebranded or added new products or services, apply for fresh trademark registration in the UAE to enhance brand protection.
Renew the trademark registration before the expiry
Trademark owners often fail to renew their trademark registration in the UAE before its expiry. Trademark registration in the UAE is valid for ten years. This means you ought to renew it in the last year of expiry. You will get a grace period of 3 months after the trademark’s protection expires.
The protection will lapse if you forget to renew it within the grace period. The trademark will be removed from the register if you fail to renew it. However, you can register a fresh application for the same trademark within three years of removal from the register. In case you fail to file a new application, other parties can file for the same trademark after three years.
Enlist Services of the Best Trademark Agents in Dubai, UAE
Maintaining the trademark registration in the UAE warrants extra effort from the trademark owners. With the help of trademark agents in Dubai, the brand owners need to check whether their trademarks are safe from infringement or other issues after the registration. Failing to maintain the registered trademarks effectively provides your competitors with an opportunity to infringe upon your IP rights.
Instead of losing your trademark rights over such lapses, enlist the services of Jitendra Intellectual Property (JIP), who can provide you with robust advice on maintaining trademarks effectively. JIP is one of the most experienced IP firms in the UAE that can help you in maintaining the trademarks without losing the rights. JIP’s trademark agents in Dubai will come in handy in tackling claims of cancellation and acts of infringement. By availing of JIP’s trademark services in Dubai, your brand remains protected from all kinds of infringement.